China securities regulator to focus on stability, reform

BEIJING: China will focus on stable development of its capital markets this year, but will press ahead to further open its markets to foreign companies, the top securities regulator said on Sunday.
“We will not waver from reforms (to make China’s capital markets) more market-based, law-based and international,” Liu Shiyu, chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), told a news conference in Beijing.
Chinese regulators have turned their sights on controlling risks in financial markets as speculative activity and leverage in the economy rise, with the securities regulator vowing to clear out “abnormal phenomena” from capital markets.
The CSRC recently pledged to target “barbaric” leveraged buyouts and to restrict excessive fundraising by some listed companies, with a focus on private share placements.
Liu said earlier this month that CSRC would take down law-breaking financial tycoons he called “giant crocodiles”, saying they will not be allowed to take advantage of retail investors.
China’s crackdown on illegal market activities has intensified since the mid-2015 stock market crash that wiped out almost $3 trillion of share value.
Liu, who was appointed CSRC chairman in early 2016, said that balancing the needs for stability and progress were crucial, especially in managing the primary market.
Limiting or halting initial share sales in order to stabilise the secondary market doesn’t “solve the problems of long-term healthy development of capital markets,” Liu said. — Reuters