Jurisdiction - Hong Kong
Reports and Analysis
Hong Kong – Results Of The SFC Annual Review Of The Performance Of The HKEx.

16 December, 2014

 

 

The SFC, as the regulator overseeing the HKEx, recently issued its annual review of the
performance of the HKEx. The SFC found that the HKEx had exercised its functions well, with its principal recommendation being that the HKEx should adopt a higher degree of scrutiny of listings involving companies transferring from the Growth Enterprise Market (GEM) board to the Main Board. Market perception of the HKEx’s consistency in rule interpretation, impartiality and timeliness of responses all improved, with the HKEx generally receiving an average score of between 4.1 and 4.3 on a scale of 5 (with 5 being the best possible score) from respondents on such matters. We set out below some brief highlights of the report that may be of interest to companies looking to list on, or are already listed on, the HKEx:

 

For companies seeking a listing:

 

  • Vetting times had improved significantly. The median time between the filing of a listing application and the issue by the HKEx of the first comment letter had decreased from 21 days for the period October 2012 to April 2013 to 14 days for October 2013 to April 2014. The median time between the filing of a listing application and the Listing Committee hearing dropped from 117 days to 59 days over the same periods.
  • In 2013, 54 per cent of applications were reviewed by the Listing Committee of the HKEx within 120 days. (Based on our experience, we believe this has likely reduced further in 2014, as borne out by the October 2013 to April 2014 median time above.)

 

For companies that are already listed:

 

  • The enforcement department conducted 69 investigations in 2013, down from 91 in 2012.
  • There were eight disciplinary cases involving sanctions (such as a public censure), 16 companies were issued warning / caution letters and eight cases were closed by way of “no further action.” This was in part due to the responsibility for enforcement shifting to the SFC and the 2012 implementation of a statutory obligation to disclose inside information in a timely manner in the Securities and Futures Ordinance.

 

Skadden

For further information, please contact:

 

Christopher Betts, Partner, Skadden
christopher.betts@skadden.com


Edward Lam, Partner, Skadden
edward.lam@skadden.com


Alec Tracy, Partner, Skadden
alec.tracy@skadden.com


Will Cai, Partner, Skadden
will.cai@skadden.com

 

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