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November 18, 2015

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RQFII quota for Singapore doubled

CHINA doubled the yuan investment quota for Singapore under an institutional investor program as part of accelerated moves to develop the offshore market because the yuan may be included in the International Monetary Fund basket of reserve currencies.

The quota for Singapore under the Renminbi Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor scheme has been raised to 100 billion yuan (US$15.7 billion), the People’s Bank of China said in a statement yesterday.

The increase will open the domestic capital market further and facilitate bilateral trade and investment between China and Singapore, the PBOC said.

The move occurred after China this month lifted RQFII quota for South Korea from 80 billion yuan to 120 billion yuan, increased a currency swap with Turkey, and allowed foreign investments made by central banks and similar organizations in the interbank market.

Z-Ben Advisors said the RQFII quota increases for Singapore and South Korea occurred within a short timeframe as China intends to further develop the role of the two countries in cross-border investment.

The RQFII mechanism, which was launched in December 2011 to widen investment channels for overseas yuan funds on the Chinese mainland, allows qualified investors to invest yuan-based funds in the mainland securities market within a permitted quota.

The RQFII quota now stands at US$166 billion, compared with US$150 billion for QFII, the US dollar-denominated counterpart, Z-Ben said, adding that yuan-denominated access is now the new norm for investment into mainland markets.

Experts have been expecting a wider opening-up of China’s domestic capital market after the IMF said last week that its staff had recommended the yuan be included in the Special Drawing Rights, the body’s official basket of currencies. The SDR includes the US dollar, the Japanese yen, the British pound and euro.


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