China Business Digest: India Bans 118 More Chinese Apps; New Rules to Ease Foreign Access to Chinese Bond Market
A new set of 118 Chinese apps were hit with a ban in India as border tensions mount. China works on new rules to make it easier for foreign investors to trade on the domestic bond market. The U.S. extended tariff exclusions for some Chinese goods while President Donald Trump is saying the federal government must get compensated as part of any sale of TikTok’s U.S. operations. Meanwhile China slapped a ban on Australia’s biggest grain exporter. And some international travelers will soon be able to find direct flights to Beijing.
— By Tang Ziyi (email@example.com) and Han Wei (firstname.lastname@example.org)
** TOP STORIES OF THE DAY
India bans 118 more Chinese apps amid rising border tensions
India banned 118 additional China-owned mobile applications in a further step to curb Chinese tech companies amid escalating tensions between the two countries. Some of China’s most popular apps are on a new restricted list released Wednesday, including e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding’s Taobao, Ant Group’s widely used payment service Alipay, Tencent Holding’s popular game PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, or PUBG, and Baidu Inc.’s search service.
China drafts new rules to expedite foreign investment in domestic bond market
China’s top financial regulators are working on new rules to make it easier for foreign investors to access the country’s $15.4 trillion bond market. The new rules will simplify application procedures for foreign bond investors and unify rules governing various investment channels, while allowing foreign investors qualified to participate in the interbank bond market to access the exchange–traded bond market.
Beijing reopens to direct international flights
Beijing will allow some international flights to land at its airport starting Thursday, five months after the capital city turned away all direct international flights over Covid-19 concerns. The first batch of flights to be allowed to enter Beijing includes those from Thailand, Cambodia, Pakistan, Greece, Denmark, Austria, Sweden and Canada. Travelers will be required to complete a 14-day quarantine and return two negative nucleic acid tests for Covid-19. The number of passengers will be capped at around 500 a day during trial operations.
U.S. extends tariff exclusions for some Chinese products
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said Tuesday it has extended tariff exclusions for some goods imported from China, including certain medical masks and wearable devices, by four months to year-end. The move would likely ease the burden for China to fulfill its phase one trade agreement with the U.S.
Trump insists on government compensation in any U.S. TikTok sale
Trump on Tuesday said he had told people involved in the sale of the U.S. assets of Chinese internet giant ByteDance Ltd.’s short-video platform TikTok that the deal must be made by Sept. 15 and the federal government must be “well compensated.” (Related in-depth story.)
China slaps ban on Australia’s biggest grain exporter
China has slapped a ban on Australia’s biggest grain exporter — a cooperative with about 4,000 farmer members — after claims customs authorities found pests in a shipment of barley. (AFR)
Geely moves closer to potential $2.9 billion China listing
Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd., the Chinese carmaker controlled by Volvo Cars owner Li Shufu, may raise as much as 20 billion yuan ($2.9 billion) through a listing on Shanghai’s STAR Market, according to a sales document filed Tuesday. (Bloomberg)
Alibaba invests more in logistics partner YTO
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has agreed to pump 6.6 billion yuan into Shanghai-listed courier YTO Express Group Co. Ltd. through stake purchases. This will increase Alibaba’s stake in YTO to 22.5% from 10.5%.
China to tighten real estate financing restrictions
China’s property developers may soon be subject to more fundraising restrictions as regulators will pilot new financing rules to curb real estate firms’ debt risks.
The pilot specifies three “redlines” — a property firm’s liability-to-asset ratio (excluding presales) should not exceed 70%; its net debt-to-equity ratio should be no more than 100%; and it must hold cash at least equal to short-term liabilities, sources told Caixin.
China Post Life seeks $2.2 billion in stake sale
The life insurance arm of China Post Group Co. Ltd. is seeking to raise about 15 billion yuan from investors to broaden the state-backed firm’s ownership, people with knowledge of the matter said. (Bloomberg)
Ovintiv, PetroChina end joint venture partnership
North American oil and gas producer Ovintiv Inc. said Tuesday it would end an eight-year joint venture with Chinese state-owned energy conglomerate PetroChina Co. Ltd. in the Duvernay shale region in west-central Alberta in Canada.
** OTHER STORIES MAKING THE HEADLINES
• Hong Kong-listed brokerage China International Capital Corp. Ltd. aims to sell as much as 458.6 million shares, or no more than 9.5% of its enlarged total shares in its upcoming secondary listing in Shanghai, according to a company prospectus (link in Chinese).
• China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank has named Swedish economist Erik Berglof as its first chief economist.
• Former Chinese central bank Governor Zhou Xiaochuan warned Tuesday that it is urgent to study the exit strategy for monetary policy tools taken by central banks across the world amid the pandemic and seek effective deleveraging measures.
• A subsidiary of U.S. banking giant Citibank NA located in China has received a fund custody license from Chinese regulators. The license allows the unit to hold fund assets for safekeeping.
• Realme, a budget sub-brand of Chinese smartphone maker Oppo, on Tuesday launched the first 5G-enabled smartphones priced under 1,000 yuan (link in Chinese).
• Cheerwin Group Ltd., a subsidiary of cleaning product giant Liby Group, has filed for a Hong Kong IPO.
** ON THE CORONAVIRUS
• On Tuesday, the Chinese mainland reported eight new Covid-19 cases with symptoms (link in Chinese), all of which were imported, according to China’s top health body.
• Northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region will begin to fully restore normal daily activities and economic production now that the region had reported zero new symptomatic Covid-19 cases for 16 consecutive days, local authorities said Tuesday.
Caixin’s coverage of the new coronavirus
• As of Wednesday afternoon Beijing time, the number of coronavirus infections globally exceeded 25.7 million, with the death toll surpassing 857,000, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
** AND FINALLY
TV drama lovers in the U.S. will soon be able to experience the fantastic world depicted in a renowned Chinese trilogy by celebrity science fiction writer Liu Cixin.
On Tuesday, U.S. streaming giant Netflix announced plans to adapt the award-winning “The Three-Body Problem” and its two sequels, “The Dark Forest” and “Death’s End,” into an original English-language science fiction series. The three books tell the story of humanity’s encounter with a mysterious alien civilization.
** LOOKING AHEAD
Sept. 3: Release of Caixin China services PMI
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