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Stock Connect deadline missed

Hong Kong and China shares declined today after the Hong Kong Exchange said there was no firm date to implement the Stock Connect programme, which was widely expected to go live in October.

On 10 April, Hong Kong’s Securities Finance Commission and China Securities Regulatory Commission had said it will take about six months for the formal launch of the Stock Connect. 

Accordingly, there were market expectations that the Stock Connect will commence operation in October. 

In a statement posted on its website, the Hong Kong exchange said, “To date, the parties are technically ready to implement Stock Connect.

“However, at the date of this announcement, HKEx has not received the relevant approval for the launch of Stock Connect, and there is no firm date for its implementation.”

At 1500 hours, Hong Kong’s Heng Seng Index declined by 0.8% while the Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index shed 0.9%.

The announcement on the delay follows recent media reports that said the Asia Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association had sought to delay the implementation of the programme due to uncertainty surrounding some technical issues and a lack of clarity over taxation. 

The trade body also asked for its members to be given a month’s notice before launch.

The so-called “through train” directly links the two stock exchanges and is a major step in China’s efforts to open up its capital market.

In September, Schroder Investment Management highlighted some of the unresolved issues which included tax treatment on capital gains on China investments, differing settlement cycles between Hong Kong and Shanghai, no option for overseas investors to participate in a rights issue in China, among others.

The delay comes amid the ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong in key districts.


A look at a broad range of Hong Kong and China indices show a steady fall towards the end of October:

Part of the Mark Allen Group.