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Hong Kong Amends 'Material Interest' Disclosure Rules

by Mery Swire, Tax-News.com, Hong Kong

06 November 2008


The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has amended a set of guidelines to exempt open-ended collective investment schemes offered to the public and listed locally as corporations from disclosure of 'material interest' requirements.

The exemption follows a month-long public consultation and came into effect on October 31 with the gazetting of the revised Guidelines for the Exemption of Listed Corporations from Part XV of the Securities and Futures Ordinance (SFO). It takes into account frequent changes in the shareholding structure of open-ended CIS or funds organised as corporations, which are subject to subscription and redemption on a continual basis.

“The rationale behind this amendment is the open-ended nature of these listed corporate funds,” said Alexa Lam, the SFC’s Executive Director of Policy, China and Investment Products and Deputy Chief Executive Officer.

“Most of the exchange-traded funds (ETFs) currently listed in Hong Kong are in trust form, which are not subject to the disclosure requirements under Part XV of the SFO. Like these trust-form ETFs, corporate-form ETFs are open-ended in nature. Both should enjoy the same disclosure treatment.”

The SFC’s consultation was launched on May 5 and concluded on June 6. Responses submitted in writing from an industry participant, a law firm and an individual respectively were generally supportive of the exemption.


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