Wednesday, June 27, 2012
China unveils new policies for Hong Kong ahead of anniversary
BEIJING (Reuters) - Beijing will promote the further development of the offshore yuan market in Hong Kong as part of a new package of policies for the territory ahead the fifteenth anniversary of its return to China, the official Xinhua agency said on Wednesday.
Since Britain handed back the colony on July 1, 1997, the city's economy has grown increasingly intertwined with that of China, and Beijing has been eager to use the global financial centre as a testbed for major reforms, such as its growing push to internationalise the yuan currency.
"On the occasion of the fifteenth anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland, the central government has formulated a series of policy measures to strengthen cooperation between the mainland and Hong Kong and further support Hong Kong's economic and social development," Xinhua said.
"On financial cooperation, the government will support the third-party to use Hong Kong as an venue to settle trade and investment and further enrich the offshore renminbi (yuan) products in Hong Kong," it said.
China will also promote the mutual listings of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on Hong Kong and mainland stock exchanges and allow Hong Kong-based financial firms to set up consumer financing companies in Guangdong, Xinhua said, citing government agencies.
China and Hong Kong will sign a supplement agreement to their existing bilateral economic pact, the Mainland and Hong Kong Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement, or Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA), to encourage the joint efforts among firms in boosting outbound investment, it said.
China will make it easier for Hong Kong's long-term funds to invest in the mainland's capital markets and allow stock exchanges in Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hong Kong to form joint-venture companies, it added.
China will deepen the investment and financial ties between Hong Kong and Shenzhen and make it easier to Cantanese films made in the territory to enter the Guangdong market, it said.
(Reporting by Kevin Yao and Xiaoyi Shao; Editing by Kim Coghill)
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