Caixin
Feb 02, 2018 05:11 PM
FINANCE

Regulator to Make It Easier for New Economy Firms to List

China’s securities regulator plans to make it easier for companies working in emerging sectors to list on the domestic A-share market, according to a statement from the authority.

The statement issued by the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) following an annual work conference Wednesday said it will “reform the listing mechanism, increase the mechanism’s tolerance and adaptability, and give more support to new technology, new industry, new industry forms and new business models.”

These policy goals were not mentioned in the statement that followed the 2017 conference.

A report from the state-run Xinhua News Agency said the CSRC is mulling changes to the listing process to grant easier access to firms in emerging sectors such as the internet, smart manufacturing, biopharmaceuticals and environmental protection.

According to Xinhua, a person close to the CSRC said this move is part of the regulator’s effort to encourage outstanding listed companies to stay in China, and to attract the next Baidu, Tencent or Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. to list on a domestic stock exchange rather than an overseas bourse.

According to a report published on the CSRC website (link in Chinese) on Jan. 8, Zhang Shenfeng, assistant to the CSRC chairman, spoke with companies at the Zhongguancun Technology Park. The park is home to the Beijing offices of several Chinese tech players, including e-commerce firm JD.com Inc. and shared-bike company Beijing Mobike Technology Co. Ltd.

One company representative told Zhang that under the current regulations it is very hard for companies in emerging industries to list in the A-share market, according to the CSRC website.

Because of laws that forbid foreign investment in internet companies, Chinese internet giants such as Netease Inc., Baidu Inc. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. chose to list in offshore exchanges via variable interest entities (VIE) arrangements. However if these companies wish to return to the domestic A-share market, they must first dismantle their VIE arrangements.

Contact reporter Zhang Qizhi (qizhizhang@caixin.com)

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