Shanghai: China may allow foreign investors a greater share of its skyrocketing stock markets, state media said on 23 May 2007, as high-level Sino-US economic talks continued in Washington.
The quota for foreign investors under a five-year-old foreign institutional investor scheme may be raised to $30 billion (Rs1.23 lakh crore) from $10 billion, the China Business News said. The proposal to bolster the programme, established in 2002, was one of the issues under discussion by senior representatives from the US and Chinese governments meeting in Washington for talks, according to the newspaper.
The high-level bilateral economic talks that opened on Tuesday, the second of its kind, is known as the “strategic economic dialogue”.
The newspaper said China was also likely to raise the ceiling on the size of stakes foreign investors can hold in Chinese financial institutions. China currently only allows a single foreign investor to take a stake of up to 20% in a domestic bank, with total foreign ownership in a single institution limited to 25%.
US treasury secretary Henry Paulson, who is leading the talks for the American side, said on Tuesday that the drive to pry open the Chinese market was a major focus of the discussions.
The two-day gathering has so far focused on China’s yuan, which US lawmakers and many businessmen say is grossly undervalued.