Thu, Aug 06, 2009 - Page 12 News List

Fubon aims to invest in China’s Fujian

By Janet Ong  /  BLOOMBERG

Fubon Financial Holding Co (富邦金控), the nation’s second-largest publicly traded financial-services company, plans to invest in China’s Fujian Province after Taiwan reaches a financial accord with China, a company official said.

The company is in “advanced discussions” with Chinese insurers and brokerages in Fujian’s Xiamen City and other parts of the province, Fubon Financial president Victor Kung (龔天行) said in an interview yesterday.

The Taipei-based company also expects to win China’s approval by the end of the year to set up a property and casualty insurer in Xiamen, Kung said.

“Xiamen is the forefront of Beijing’s Taiwan strategy vis-a-vis Taiwan,” Kung said.

Fubon doesn’t plan to expand in China’s bigger cities as it cannot compete with local firms, he said.

Fubon, the first Taiwanese financial company to buy a stake in a Chinese bank through its Hong Kong unit, plans to increase its almost 20 percent stake in closely held Xiamen City Commercial Bank (廈門市商銀) after the cross-strait accord on financial services is signed, Kung said.

Existing rules cap each foreign investor’s holding in a Chinese lender at 20 percent.

“For the next three years, we will continue to be investing” in China, Kung said.

Earnings from China will be negligible in the period, the executive said.

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