Some of China’s biggest state-owned companies, including
China Life Insurance
said Friday they will voluntarily delist from U.S. stock exchanges.
The statements from
China Petroleum & Chemical
(SNP), and China Life Insurance (LFC) came separately amid worsening relations between the U.S. and China. Two other companies—
Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical
(SHI)—also plan to delist.
In its statement, Sinopec said, “China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation has notified the New York Stock Exchange on 12 August 2022 that it willapply for the voluntary delisting of its American depositary shares.”
There has been a long-running dispute over the auditing of U.S.-listed Chinese companies, with China pushing back on external regulators examining audits of local firms. China has previously cited national security and confidentiality concerns.
Earlier this year, it looked as if progress had been made that would have kept U.S.-listed China stocks remain on U.S. exchanges. Chinese authorities’ gave assurances that the issue was being resolved, but the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board issued caution that such optimism was premature.
“These companies are listed on multiple markets, and only a small portion of their securities are traded in the U.S. markets,” the China Securities Regulatory Commission said in a statement Friday. “The delisting plan will not jeopardize these companies’ fund-raising ability through domestic and overseas capital markets.”
It said that that the companies’ “delisting decisions are made out of their business considerations.”
Concern about delisting worries hit the shares of
the Chinese e-commerce giant, which is listed in both Hong Kong and New York, where its American depositary shares are traded. Alibaba (BABA) stock was down 3.1% to $91.97 in premarket trading Friday.
Earlier this week, it said an application to convert an existing secondary listing in Hong Kong into a primary listing has been approved. That means it will become a dual-primary listed company in both Hong Kong and New York.
Write to Rupert Steiner at email@example.com