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BEIJING, April 22 (Reuters) - More firms, including Shanghai-based Guotai Junan Securities, announced plans to list in China's equity markets on Tuesday, sharply increasing the number of potential stock debutants amid a two-month lull in new listings.
Eighteen draft prospectuses for initial public offerings (IPOs) from companies including Orient Securities Co Ltd. and Dongxing Securities were posted on the website of China's securities regulator, China Securities Regulatory Commission.
This increases the total number of companies that announced their IPO plans in the past four days to 64, a trend that may worry those who fear a deluge of new listings may pressure Chinese share prices by reducing funds for existing stocks.
The growing line of companies waiting to make their stock debuts comes after a two-month drought of new listings, shutting out firms in need of new financing and raising fears that the government has suspended IPOs once more.
China halted new listings for 14 months from late 2012, in what some analysts said was a bid to shield sluggish domestic equity markets from further downward pressure.
The lack of regulatory approval for new listings in the past eight weeks have caused some companies to abandon their listing plans.
There are no indications in the draft prospectuses whether the IPOs have been approved or when they would take place. As of April 18, 606 firms in China were on the IPO waiting list, down from 675 the previous week.
Reporting by Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Ron Popeski