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Sizing up China's new markets chief

Wednesday, February 24, 2016 - 01:34

Liu Shiyi is in his first week as head of Chinese securities, an area he has no direct experience in. There's a weight of expectation on his shoulders as the country looks to Beijing after months of market turmoil. Graham Mackay reports.

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This is the man tasked with restoring faith in China's stock market. Liu Shiyu -starting his new role as Beijing's securities regulator this week... Inheriting the fallout from a crisis. Reuters Pete Sweeney says winning over investors won't be his only big challenge. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS CHIEF CHINA MARKETS CORRESPONDENT, PETE SWEENEY, SAYING: "The trick for Liu is gonna be - like for any political appointee taking over a gigantic sprawling bureaucracy - is how to push through change - how and when to do it - against a bureaucracy that has a lot of career people who really aren't interested in the kind of reforms that the market needs." Top of Liu's to-do list is to kick-start changes like loosening up the rules for Chinese IPOs. But pushing back against the old guard won't be easy. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS CHIEF CHINA MARKETS CORRESPONDENT, PETE SWEENEY, SAYING: "The CSRC officials control who gets to list, when they get to list, and even how they get to price the IPO in many ways. This gives the officials in charge of those sections an enormous amount of influence and power that can be an incentive for corruption as well. For Liu or anyone, to come into that system, and start implementing reforms that weaken the influence of these guys, you know, is going to be quite tough." Liu definitely does have his supporters though - And China's social media army is feverishly posting about his appointment. (SOUNDBITE) (English) REUTERS CHIEF CHINA MARKETS CORRESPONDENT, PETE SWEENEY, SAYING: "One guy just asked Liu Shiyi to push up the markets so he could make a bunch of money and find a good wife. Another guy said a bull market was certain to come." Liu is not be a tried and tested regulator -- in fact, he doesn't even have a background in securities but at least his appointment hasn't got people panicking. Many say for now, that's the best that Beijing can hope for.

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Sizing up China's new markets chief

Wednesday, February 24, 2016 - 01:34