July 3, 2020 / 4:51 AM / a month ago

China to slash fees, add platforms for HK-based bond trading link - c.bank

HONG KONG, July 3 (Reuters) - The People’s Bank of China will cut fees, extend operating hours and introduce more trading platforms to the ‘Bond Connect’ scheme that allows global investors a way into its vast market via Hong Kong, Deputy Governor Pan Gongsheng said on Friday.

The programme widened access to international investors and aided the inclusion of Chinese bonds in global benchmarks, which analysts say will eventually generate billions of dollars in inflows. It launched exactly three years ago.

But the scheme is only available on two global trading platforms - Bloomberg and Tradeweb. Only ‘northbound’ trading is open, leaving mainland investors unable to tap bonds in Hong Kong via the link, unlike a similar stock market programme.

Mainland China has strict capital controls while Hong Kong, an offshore financial hub, has not. Policymakers have said ‘southbound’ trading will come later, but without saying when.

The mainland bond market is the world’s second largest at 108 trillion yuan ($15.29 trillion), the PBOC says. ($1=7.0650 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Noah Sin; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

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