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REGIONS ASIA-PACIFIC


IDOTHINK THE REST OF THEWORLD IS GOING TO CATCHUPWITH CHINA, PARTICULARLY THEEU


Chinatargets overseasIPOs C


CRACKDOWN ON CHINESE TECH FIRMS LISTING ABROAD TURNS DATA PROTECTION INTO STATE POLICY. SETH O’FARRELL REPORTS


hina has tightened up regula- tions for data-heavy tech com- panies planning to list over-


seas, in a bid to curb a mounting wave of cross-border Chinese initial public offerings (IPOs) and add a new screening mechanism for local firms willing to establish a footprint out- side the country. The Cyberspace Administration


of China (CAC), the country’s inter- net regulator, said on July 10 that


Chinese companies with data of more than one million users will need to undergo a secu- rity review before listing on foreign stock exchanges, following its probe into ride-hail- ing app Didi after its attempted IPO in New York in June. Winston Ma, former head of North America


at China Investment Corporation, tells fDi that if the final data review ruling from CAC only applies to “overseas listings” and not “offshore


listings”, itmay well lead tomore Chinese com- panies redirecting attention from the US to Hong Kong to launch IPOs. The announcement of tighter regulation


came in the wake of a bumper half-year for Chinese companies listing on US exchanges. Some 34 Chinese companies, from the retail, transport and technology sectors, raised a record $12.5bn on US exchanges over the first two quarters of 2021, according to Refintiv data, with $8.1bn raised in Q2 alone.


Vetopower Rory Green, China economist at TS Lombard, says that this gives the regulator a “veto” power over future non-China/non-Hong Kong IPOs. “I think this is a sort of catalyst [for] China to


look at [cross-border IPOs] like a screening mechanism,” Mr Green says. “It’s not outbound Chinese investment, but it is going out from China and they want to make sure it’s safe and there’s no undue leverage from foreign powers


CHINESE IPOSHAVE BEEN RIDINGHIGHONWALL STREET OVER THE PAST YEAR LISTINGS OF CHINESE FIRMSONUS STOCK EXCHANGES BYQUARTER ($BN)


Source: Refinitiv 68 www.fDiIntelligence.com August/September 2021


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