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January 14, 2010

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Scheme to list US$3.5b of SOEs' assets

SHANGHAI'S state-owned asset regulator plans to list 23.6 billion yuan (US$3.46 billion) of assets this year and boost mergers between local state-owned enterprises to speed up restructuring of underperforming companies.

"More than 30 percent of the operating state-owned assets will be listed on the stock market by the end of this year, compared with 25.4 percent a year earlier," said Yang Guoxiong, director of the Shanghai State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission.

Last year, 27 billion yuan, or 25.4 percent, of such assets were listed, and local SOEs reaped 78 billion yuan via new share sales and share placements.

"We urge qualified companies to conduct group listing or list core assets this year to build their listed arms as the platforms for their main business operations," Yang said on Tuesday.

The commission will set up a company in the first quarter of 2010 to manage state-owned assets to optimize their allocation.

"We will also encourage listed firms to gain finance via additional share sales and share placement, as well as speed up mergers to increase asset quality," he said.

Yang said the commission will cut the number of industries covered by local SOEs this year to 72 from 79 by adjusting seven of them, including leather, fur, wood processing and paper making. In three years, their number will be further cut to 54.

Local SOEs made an annual 53.3-percent rise in profit to 40.9 billion yuan last year.


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