LOCAL bankers are optimistic about the future of China's financial market after reviewing the series of targets for financial reform set out by the mainland authorities. Financial disorder in China has lessened appreciably after three months of regulating through administrative measures, according to Fan Jia-yan, executive director of the Hongkong Chinese Bank. At an earlier meeting with members of the Hong Kong and China Investment Tour, Mr Fan and John Lee, managing director of Lippo Limited, spoke on the current status and development of the Chinese banking industry and Asian investment in China respectively. Mr Fan suggested that the Chinese Government should speed up the transition to a market economy and gave first priority to the reform of the financial system and ownership. He pointed out that the targets of the financial reform included speeding up the establishment of a sound central bank as well as the commercialisation of the country's specialised banks. Currently, there are four specialised banks: the Agricultural Bank of China, the Industrial Commercial Bank of China, People's Construction Bank of China and the Bank of China. ''The goal of reforming the specialised banks was to require them to gradually renovate themselves to commercial banks in two-three years,'' Mr Fan said. The central bank is preparing to establish of state banks that will specialise in making ''policy loans'', to businesses and individuals. An ''Export and Import Credit Bank'', for in export credit finance, is also to be set up before the end of the year. In addition, the ''Long-Term Credit Bank'', will be set up in the first half of next year to deal with financing capital investment. Mr Fan said the Chinese authorities had planned to internationalise and standardise its domestic banking industry, eventually creating an efficient regulatory system. China's Ministry of Finance has already enforced a new set of accounting principles to Chinese enterprises. More foreign accounting firms, auditing firms and law firms are to be allowed to establish themselves in China. The central bank has also accelerated the process of unifying the renminbi, China's local currency, and intends to unify the swap centre rates throughout the country to narrow the gap between the two exchange rates - the official rate and the market rate. A single exchange rate is to be introduced. Mr Fan added that the central bank would allow the establishment of an additional limited number of regional commercial banks. The authorities would loosen control over the setting-up of branches and banking joint ventures by foreign financial institutions, as well as the business scope of these entities having foreign investment. Mr Fan was confident that a reborn Chinese financial market would be strong in the Asian Continent and the Hongkong Chinese Bank would expand its mainland role. He said that the most eye-catching achievement of China's banking industry was the breaking-down of the monopoly by the establishment of a number of commercial banks in the last seven years. On the situation of Asian countries' investments in China, John Lee, managing director of Lippo Limited pointed out that the Guangdong province was in a leading position to attract foreign investments because of its proximity to Hong Kong and Macau. Hong Kong investment topped the largest foreign investors in China, followed by Taiwanese investment, which exceeded US$10 billion in the first quarter of this year, according to Mr Lee.