【英语中国】李小加呼吁改革香港上市规则 HKEx chief seeks rules change after Alibaba float goes to US

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所属分类:双语中国

2014-4-12 14:57

小艾摘要: The head of Hong Kong’s stock market operator has questioned the city’s commitment to the “one share, one vote” principle, in his clearest comments to date following Alibaba’s decision to take it ...
HKEx chief seeks rules change after Alibaba float goes to US
The head of Hong Kong’s stock market operator has questioned the city’s commitment to the “one share, one vote” principle, in his clearest comments to date following Alibaba’s decision to take its blockbuster listing to the US.

Charles Li, chief executive of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing, wrote on his blog yesterday that inaction on regulatory reform “appears to have helped nobody”, yet had “hurt Hong Kong’s competitiveness in attracting new economy companies”.

“?‘One share, one vote’ is a rule that ensures those who have more of a firm’s share capital have more influence over the company; that is: money is king,” wrote Mr Li.

“But investor protection is a much bigger concept; it is an overarching series of rules and regulations aimed at ensuring investors, particularly public investors, are as protected as possible from wrongdoing by those in power. In other words, investor protection is the end, and ‘one share, one vote’ is only one of the many means.”

Debate has been raging in Hong Kong in the past six months over whether the city needs to overhaul its current listing rules to allow either dual-class share ownership, or partnership structures that allow company founders to control board nominations without a majority shareholding. Many Chinese internet and technology companies have chosen to list in the US due to the more relaxed rules on voting rights and on profitability. Many now worry that Hong Kong is missing out as Chinese tech companies look to go global.

The discussion was sparked by the prospect of attracting Alibaba, China’s biggest ecommerce site, to Hong Kong for its initial public offering – which may yet be the largest in history. After months of negotiations, Alibaba said last month it would list in the US, where rules allow for the kind of partnership structure it is seeking.

Mr Li is among those eager to see a formal consultation over whether Hong Kong needs new rules to make sure it remains a global centre for capital raising, especially as more privately owned Chinese companies seek stock market listings.

In his blog post, Mr Li says he supports those in favour of change, as the issue of weighted share structures was of “limited relevance” to investors.

“It is difficult to conclude that US regulators chose to allow the dual-class share regimes because they do not care about investor protection. The success to date by firms like Google and Facebook makes it difficult for us to conclude that US investors have lost out as a result of such structures,” wrote Mr Li.

香港股市运营商主管李小加(Charles Li)就阿里巴巴(Alibaba)赴美上市的决定发表了一份态度最为明确的评论。在该评论中,他对香港承诺的“同股同权”原则表示质疑。

李小加是是香港交易及结算所有限公司(Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing)的首席执行官。昨天,他在博客上表示,监管改革上的不作为“似乎并无益于目前香港市场中的任何一方,但它却实实在在影响香港市场吸引新经济公司的核心竞争力”。

李小加写道:“‘同股同权’只是一条规则,其潜台词是:‘资本为王’,掌握资本者掌握公司命运。”

“而投资者保护则是涵盖一系列法律法规、保护投资者尤其是公共投资者不受侵害的综合保障制度。也就是说,保护投资者是目的,‘同股同权’是众多手段之一。”

过去6个月,一场辩论在香港激烈展开,其焦点是香港是否有必要彻底修改其上市规则,以允许多重股权所有制或合伙人制度之类的股权制度,让公司创始人不必占有多数股权就能控制董事会提名。许多中国互联网和高科技企业选择在美国上市,就是因为美国在选举权和盈利能力上的规定更为宽松。如今,许多人担心香港在中国科技企业走向全球之际错失良机。

引发这场辩论的是,香港本来有望吸引中国最大的电子商务网站阿里巴巴赴港首次公开发行(IPO),这有可能成为史上最大规模的上市。在长达数月的谈判之后,阿里巴巴上月宣布将在美国上市,因为那里的规定能够让该公司采用合伙人制度。

和许多人一样,李小加十分迫切地希望香港就是否需要新的规则来保障其全球募资中心地位举行一场正式意见咨询,尤其是在越来越多中国私有企业寻求上市之际。

他在博客文章中表示,他支持那些赞同改革的人,因为对投资者来说,加权股票结构的问题“并不重要”。

他写道:“我们很难下结论说美国监管者允许多重股权架构源于它对投资者保护的漠视,而如此多Google、Facebook之类的名企均坚持并成功以多重股权架构上市与发展,也很难证明美国投资者反对或受害于这种架构。”

译者/简易

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