(Yicai Global) Dec. 28 — The cost of borrowing by Chinese companies fell below an average rate of 5 percent this year, a historic low, according to China’s central bank governor.

The People’s Bank of China will steadily drive corporate financing costs lower and improve the formation and transmission mechanism of market-based interest rates, Yi Gang told Xinhua News Agency in an exclusive interview today.

The PBOC also will bring out targeted policies to guide financial institutions in boosting support for the real economy, especially micro and small businesses, tech innovation, and green and high-quality development, Yi said. Inclusive loans have helped more than 42 million micro and small firms this year, he said.

China’s financial risks are generally controllable, and the upward momentum of the macro leverage ratio has been contained, Yi said.

Regarding the real estate market, he said that individual developers were exposed to risks in the early stage due to their own poor management and blind diversification and expansion.

The authorities have since taken steps to resolve risks in a sound and orderly manner and meet the normal financing needs of residents and builders, and market expectations are gradually improving, he said. The property market’s structural adjustment will help form a new development pattern and achieve a virtuous cycle and the healthy development of the industry, Yi added.

The PBOC rolled out tools to support the reduction of carbon emissions and special refinancing for clean and efficient use of coal last month. Yi released that the bank will issue the first batch of funds to financial institutions by the end of this month.

He noted that these tools and refinancing policies must pay more attention to the role of the market, encourage social funds to invest in green and low-carbon fields, and help reach peak carbon dioxide emissions in a scientific and orderly manner.\China aims to hit peak emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, President Xi Jinping said in September last year.

Editor: Peter Thomas