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Seeking right time for new QDII product
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The China Insurance Regulatory Commission has finished preparations for the launch of the insurer-invested Qualified Domestic Institutional Investor scheme, said Yuan Li, the CIRC spokesperson, yesterday.

"Detailed rules and investment policies for insurer-invested QDII scheme have been basically ready and we will pick the right time to release them," said Yuan at a press conference.

The CIRC had earlier signed a memorandum of understanding with the China Securities Regulatory Commission for cross-industry supervision over the insurer-invested QDII scheme.

Last month, China's mainland and Hong Kong signed an agreement to allow the mainland regulator overseeing the use of insurance funds to work in Hong Kong, paving the way for the launch of insurer-invested QDII products.

China Life Insurance Co, the nation's biggest insurer, set up a fund management firm in Hong Kong with Franklin Templeton Investments in June last year. Ping An Insurance (Group) Co, the second-biggest, also has asset management operations in Hong Kong.

China unveiled the QDII scheme in 2006 to allow mainland investors access to overseas capital markets to tap more investment channels and digest the excess liquidity on the home market.

However, most QDII products lost money due to a battered world economy reeling from the United States mortgage crisis.

In late March, China Minsheng Banking Corp liquidated a QDII fund, as required if the fund's assets fell below 50 percent of their initial value.

In February, a QDII fund managed by ICBC Credit Suisse Asset Management Co raised only about one-tenth of the average amount previous products netted as investors turned cautious on a broad downturn in global markets.

(Shanghai Daily April 24, 2008)

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