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WEALTH MANAGEMENT | Tony Chua, Taiwan
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Regulator rejects China Strategic's Nan Shan bid

Lack of details and inconsistencies in data caused regulator's disapproval.

Taiwan's Investment Commission said it turned down an application by the China Strategic Holdings Ltd.-led consortium to acquire Nan Shan Life Insurance Co. because it didn't provide specifics on the consortium's funding sources or investors.

American International Group Inc. (AIG) agreed last month to sell its Taiwan insurance unit, Nan Shan Life, to the consortium, comprising Hong Kong-based China Strategic Holdings and Primus Financial Holdings Ltd., for $2.15 billion, as stated in a report in the Wall Street Journal.

But the commission turned down the consortium's application on 13 November, a day after it was submitted, and asked for more information, including a statement from AIG about its intention to sell Nan Shan Life, the commission said in a report to lawmakers.

It also said China Strategic must explain its agreement with Chinatrust Financial Holding Co. to sell a 30 percent stake in Nan Shan Life to the consumer-banking giant in exchange for a 9.95 percent stake in Chinatrust. China Strategic announced that deal only last month, weeks after winning the bid for Nan Shan Life.

"I do think they need to be more consistent," Financial Supervisory Commission Chairman Sean Chen told lawmakers in reference to the China Strategic-Chinatrust agreement, which critics say runs contrary to the consortium's long-term commitment to Nan Shan Life's interests.
 

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