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ICBC Aims for $10 billion IPO in HK
2006-02-16 15:43:21      Agence France-Presse
ICBC plans to raise over $9.95b from an IPO in Hong Kong in September.

BEIJING- Industrial and Commercial Bank of China plans to raise over 80 billion yuan (9.95 billion dollars) from an initial public offering in Hong Kong in September, state press reports.

But the timetable of ICBC's share sale could change depending on the plans of Bank of China, another 'big four' state-owned bank, to also list this year, the China Securities Journal said, citing an unnamed official source.

The newspaper said the State Council was reviewing Bank of China's listing plan, which is aiming for the issue of stock in Hong Kong at the end of May and on domestic markets at the end of July, the newspaper said.

The Beijing-based bank plans to raise some eight billion dollars, reports have said.

Both banks are still shopping for strategic investors. Goldman Sachs, American Express and Allianz had already agreed in late January to pay 3.78 billion dollars for a 10 percent stake ICBC.

A consortium led by Royal Bank of Scotland including US investment bank Merrill Lynch and Hong Kong-based business tycoon Li Ka-Shing last year agreed to buy a 10 percent stake in Bank of China for 3.1 billion dollars.

China is racing to clean up its trouble banking sector ahead of liberalisation at the end of this year that will allow foreigners to offer loans and tap the nation's more than 1.4 trillion dollars in savings.

(Photo: AFP)

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