China bank says studying plans on hybrid ownership reform

BEIJING, July 28 Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:32am EDT

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BEIJING, July 28 (Reuters) - China's Bank of Communications Co Ltd (BoCom) is studying feasibility plans for the implementation of hybrid ownership reforms to help improve its competitiveness, it said on Monday.

The country's fifth-largest lender is "actively studying feasibility plans on deepening hybrid ownership reforms and improving internal corporate governance mechanism," it said in a statement.

The reforms would help strengthen the bank's risk controls and improve its competitiveness in the market, it said.

Sources told Reuters on Friday that the bank had applied to become the first state-controlled bank to pilot the so-called hybrid ownership reform, paving the way for selling stakes to private investors.

The application comes just over a week after the government named six state-owned enterprises that it wanted to see revamp operations to attract investment, part of reforms aimed at letting private capital play a bigger role in the economy.

BoCom is a joint-stock bank whose biggest shareholder is the Ministry of Finance with 27 percent, followed by HSBC Holdings PLC with 19 percent. (Reporting by Kevin Yao; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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