HSBC granted approval for $7.4bn Ping An sale

4 February 2013

HSBC has been granted regulatory approval to complete the sale of its shares in Ping An Insurance, it has emerged.

Towards the end of last year, the major British bank announced it had come to an agreement to sell its 15.57 per cent stake in the Chinese financial firm to indirect wholly-owned subsidiaries of Charoen Pokphand Group, with an instalment of around one-fifth of these shares being transferred immediately.

HSBC and Charoen Pokphand then agreed that the remaining stocks would be handed over when the deal has been ratified by the China Insurance Regulatory Commission and, in an official statement, the lender has revealed this approval has now been granted.

The second tranche of shares - which are worth more than $7.4 billion - will now be paid for in cash and HSBC expects the transfer to be completed on Wednesday (6 February).

Li Wenbing, analyst at Bocom International Holdings, told Bloomberg: "Given all the twists and turns, this outcome is quite a surprise and the best for all."

By Asim Shah

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