History::Bank of Taiwan


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Newly built Bank of Taiwan Head Office Building in 1939

The Bank of Taiwan was established as Taiwan's central bank in 1899 by Taiwan's Japanese government. The bank's creation was authorized in 1897 by the Bank Act of Taiwan which encouraged Japanese enterprises, such as the Mitsubishi and Mitsui Groups, to invest in Taiwan. Extensive cooperation ensued between the Nippon Kangyo Bank and the Bank of Taiwan. A financial crisis facing these banks in 1927 was relieved with assistance from the Bank of Japan. Bank branches were created in other parts of Asia as the empire expanded, including areas in China and Southeast Asia.

After the Japanese surrender in 1945, the ROC government took over the Bank of Taiwan and began issuing Taiwan dollars, also known as Taiwan Nationalist Yuan, through the Bank of Taiwan. This currency is now referred to as the "old Taiwan dollar." Severe inflation of this currency during the Chinese Civil War led the Bank of Taiwan to issue the New Taiwan Dollar in 1949. After the loss of mainland China in the Chinese Civil War by the Kuomintang and its subsequent retreat to Taiwan, the Bank of Taiwan took on a more central role as the central bank of the ROC until the Central Bank of China was reestablished in 1961. The Bank of Taiwan was governed under the Taiwan Provincial Government until 1998 when governance was transferred to the ROC Finance Ministry. In 2001 the Central Bank of China took over the task of issuing the New Taiwan Dollar.

The Bank of Taiwan currently operates a total of 169 domestic branches as well as branches in Tokyo, Singapore, Hong Kong and the People's Republic of China. Branches have also been established in New York City, Los Angeles, London, and South Africa.

In July 2007, the Bank of Taiwan merged with the Central Trust of China (中央信託局) as part of a government financial reform package. The bank continues to operate as an independent company taking over some aspects of the Trust's banking business. In January 2008, the Bank became part of the Taiwan Financial Holding Group (臺灣金融控股公司), which also contains BankTaiwan Securities and BankTaiwan Life Insurance.

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