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Guernsey Fund Sector Making Inroads Into Asian Market

by Jason Gorringe, Lowtax.net, London
31 March, 2014

Guernsey fund managers can now apply for Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor status in China, the Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, Fiona Le Poidevin, has announced.

The QFII program, launched in 2002, allows licensed foreign investors to buy and sell renminbi-denominated A-shares in the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges. Strict capital controls imposed by the Chinese government previously prevented foreign investors from having access to mainland stock exchanges.

Le Poidevin said: "I have just spent a week in China continuing the dialogue with both regulatory and professional services contacts we have built up since we established our office in Shanghai at the end of 2007. It is the strength of these relationships which has ensured that Guernsey fund managers can now apply to receive QFII status and, as such, a quota for investing into China. This makes Guernsey an extremely attractive jurisdiction for fund managers who are seeking to invest into the Chinese market."

Le Poidevin visited Beijing and Shanghai where she met with lawyers, fund managers, and private banks to showcase the advantages of using the Guernsey funds and private wealth sectors to service their clients.

The Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) signed a Statement of Cooperation with the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) in 2011 and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) in November last year. It has now been confirmed that the MoU between the GFSC and the CSRC enables Guernsey fund managers to apply to be QFII licensed and therefore, receive a quota for investing into China.

In a separate development, Guernsey-headquartered fund administrator International Administration Group (IAG) has announced joint ventures with the Tricor Group in Hong Kong and Singapore. Tricor is a member of the Bank of East Asia Group.

The new joint ventures provide fund administration services to private equity, real estate, and alternative assets funds in Hong Kong and Singapore. IAG already has offices in both locations, and also a joint venture with the Exceedor Group in Shanghai.

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