May 8, 2020 / 11:49 AM / 19 days ago

China to launch IPO reform on Shenzhen's ChiNext in Aug: sources

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China plans to officially implement initial public offering (IPO) reforms on Shenzhen’s start-up board ChiNext in August, three sources told Reuters on Friday.

China last week announced plans to launch a U.S.-style, registration-based IPO system on ChiNext as Beijing accelerates capital market restructuring to reinvigorate an economy ravaged by the coronavirus.

The official launch of the reform will be timed to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, which pioneered China’s economic reform and opening, said the sources with knowledge of the plan.

The Shenzhen Stock Exchange and the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) were not immediately available for comment.

Under the registration-based IPO system, which was first introduced on Shanghai’s Nasdaq-style STAR Market, companies seeking listings no longer need approval from CSRC, the stock market watchdog, greatly shortening the waiting period.

Instead, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange will vet ChiNext IPO applications based on disclosure rules, while the market will decide on the pricing and timing of new share sales.

Regulators have told underwriters to tighten up their due diligence on companies preparing to go public, according to the sources.

Reporting by Xiaochong Zhang and Brenda Goh; writing by Samuel Shen; editing by Jason Neely and Carmel Crimmins

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