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China firms 'don't communicate enough'

By  Hu Yuanyuan (China Daily)

09:11, December 13, 2012

Poor information flow and difficulties contacting Chinese companies after the closing of bond deals is suppressing the investment appetite of international investors, Fitch Ratings said in a report on Wednesday.

Other concerns include Chinese companies' financial disclosure and corporate governance. These were among the key points of discussion during recent meetings with international investors based in New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong and Singapore, it said.

Fitch believes that while investment interest will remain strong in 2013, these shortcomings may dampen global investors' interest in Chinese corporate debt, even as Chinese corporate appetite for international debt issuance persists throughout 2013.

Investors expressed frustration that the level of communication from many Chinese corporate treasury teams was extremely poor compared with other multinational corporations issuing bonds.

Specifically investors highlighted investments they had made in first-time or non-frequent issuers where, after the bond deal closed, information flow became sparse and their calls to the company for updates were not returned.

Investors were at a loss to determine whether this was due to a lack of understanding of international bond investor requirements versus those of private wealth investors, whether it was force of habit from having had readily available bank funding historically, or something else which they had not yet been able to determine, the report showed.

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