China approves HSBC's $11.7b Ping An stake sale
SHANGHAI (AFP) - China said Friday it had approved British bank HSBC's sale of its stake in insurance giant Ping An to a Thai conglomerate for US$9.4 billion (S$11.7 billion), ending speculation that the deal was on the verge of collapse.
Regulators in Beijing gave the green light just hours before a deadline for approval despite reports in Hong Kong media that they were ready to reject the bid over concerns about funding for the purchase.
HSBC also confirmed that it had received approval to sell the 15.57 per cent stake and said it would complete the transfer of its shares to subsidiaries of Charoen Pokphand Group, owned by Thai tycoon Dhanin Chearavanont, on Feb 6.
"We have been informed that CIRC (China Insurance Regulatory Commission) approval was granted today," HSBC said in a statement.