GE Money, the consumer finance arm of General Electric, is close to launching a credit card in China in partnership with Wal-Mart, the world's biggest retailer, the Financial Times reported. The partnership could be announced as early as this week, marking GE Money's first significant foray into the Chinese consumer finance market, where less than 5% of the population have credit cards. GE Money is the sole provider of private label cards to Wal-Mart's US operation, but HSBC stole a march on it last month when it launched a separate credit card partnership with the retailer in collaboration with Bank of Communications, China's fifth-biggest lender, in which HSBC holds a 19.9% stake.
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