REFILE-China state investment fund Huijin eyes European banks investment

Thu Sep 4, 2014 12:55am EDT

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(Corrects surname in paragraph 2 to Li)

FRANKFURT, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Central Huijin Investment Ltd., the state-owned holding company for China's largest financial institutions, is seeking European bank investments to diversify its domestic holdings, vice-chairman Li Jiange said on Wednesday.

"When we invest in China, efficiency and investment return has gone down," Li said at a banking conference in Germany.

"If we can then expand abroad, then we are highly interested in looking into European banks," he said, speaking through a translator. "We would really be interested in profitable objects."

Huijin, a unit of China's $653 billion sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corporation (CIC), is a major shareholder in China's biggest banks.

Huijin has periodically purchased listed shares of Chinese commercial banks and other financial firms on the secondary market.

As of the end of 2013, Huijin had investments in 18 Chinese financial institutions, but none in other countries, according to its website. It manages the majority of CIC's roughly $450 billion investment in China.

CIC has other investments abroad via another subsidiary, China Investment Corp International. (Reporting by Thomas Atkins, additional reporting by Koh Gui Qing and Jason Subler; Editing by Susan Thomas)

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