China's foreign exchange regulator toughened the rules on overseas cash withdrawals from personal bank cards to curb money laundering, terrorist financing and tax evasion.
The State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said in a circular that the total amount of overseas cash withdrawals from all domestic bank cards owned by one person will be capped at 100,000 yuan (about 15,300 U.S. dollars) per person each year.
If an individual exceeds the annual cap in a year, his or her overseas withdrawals will be suspended in that year and the following year.
Since 2003, the quota for overseas withdrawals has been 100,000 yuan per card each year. The new rules can "prevent law breakers from withdrawing a large amount of cash with different cards from different banks," the authority said.
In 2016, 81 percent of domestic cards saw overseas cash withdrawals less than 30,000 yuan. Thus, the new rules can meet normal cash needs and curb illegal activities.
The rules will become effective on Jan. 1, 2018.