THE rumour that Hutchison Whampoa is selling off its British telecommunications business spread through the market again yesterday, with the potential buyer thought to be Cable & Wireless. Sources in the securities industry say the British telecommunications business is the only negative factor affecting Hutchison's share price as there is no need for further loss write-offs in Husky Oil and the pressure of capital-raising has disappeared. If the business is sold off, it is expected that Hutchison's profits could grow by as much as 50 per cent. When announcing the company's results last month, chairman Li Ka-shing said the British telecommunications business would still record a loss this year, offsetting almost all the profits expected from the mobile telephone and paging businesses in Hongkong. He also said that Hutchison would inject an additional GBP200 million (about HK$2.4 billion) into Britain, bringing total investment there to GBP500 million. - EXPRESS NEWS CHEVALIER Development's $950 million loan has been completed with 11 banks participating. The money raised will be used for the Chai Wan home ownership programme. The loan is for 27 months and has an interest rate of 87.5 basis points above interbank rates. The loan was arranged by Mitsubishi Bank and Credit Lyonnais. - SING TAO IT is said that the Lippo Group is now undergoing restructuring and the technical takeover of Asia Securities by EIE Development is to pave the way for this plan. According to information received, Asia Securities will sell its development in Redhill, shopping space in the Regent Centre and an industrial building to EIE. The cash raised will be used to take over Lippo Securities from the Lippo Group. - TIN TIN DAILY NEWS FOLLOWING the sale of Kader Investment, Kader Holdings is planning to diversify. One of its core businesses will be retail sales in China. Managing director Kenneth Ting says the group will set up retail outlets in various shopping centres in China, with stores initially set up in Guangzhou and Shenzhen to test the market. - TIN TIN DAILY NEWS THE share price of Shaw Brothers surged yesterday on the back of positive sentiment about TVB. Shaw Brothers has a 34 per cent stake in TVB. A spokesman for Shaw Brothers says he can not explain the reason for the rapid rise in the company's share price. There was speculation yesterday that Shaw Brothers was selling TVB shares in the market to take profits, but this was denied by the company. - TIN TIN DAILY NEWS SHAW Brothers is said to be talking to the Government about the use of some of its land in Clearwater Bay to develop low-rise homes. - TIN TIN DAILY NEWS ACCORDING to the stock exchange, Evergo International's interest in Chinese Estates has risen from 55.5 per cent to 64.8 per cent. Furthermore, the Lau brothers, Joseph and Thomas, have increased their holding in Evergo from 64.78 per cent to 69.35 per cent. - EXPRESS NEWS A SENIOR manager of the Bank of East Asia, Mr Lo Nim-Chi, says the bank will be introducing a yuan exchange service from May 24. The bank is the second to set up such a service after Po Sang Bank. Mr Lo attributes the move to the increasing business and tourist trade between Hongkong and China, with the daily amount of yuan traded reaching between 10 million and 20 million. - ORIENTAL DAILY NEWS HONGKONG Telecommunications has been a favourite of US investors but its share price has risen only 10 per cent in the last six months, while the Hang Seng Index has gained 30 per cent. With the company announcing its results next week and a satisfactory performance expected, it is anticipated that US trust funds will take the opportunity to push up the price of the share, with the target set at $15. Hongkong Telecom shares were yesterday selling for $11.30. - SING PAO MR Joseph Lau, chairman of Evergo International and Chinese Estates, has been confirmed as the buyer of a luxury house at Black's Link. The house was sold for a record $96 million. A source in the property industry says Mr Lau bought the property through a shell company, but it is thought to be for his own personal use. Meanwhile, Mr Anthony Nicolle, general manager of the Standard Chartered Bank, has sold his home on the Peak for $51.5 million. A source says the buyer could be Mr Peter Woo, chairman of Wharf (Holdings). The property at Severn Road has a site area of 18,000 sq ft. The total floor area is 8,400 sq ft, and the average price per sq ft is $6,130. - MING PAO ACCORDING to the Land Office, POP Sales Co has bought 143 shops in King's Road for $100 million. The total floor space is 19,654 sq ft, and the average price per sq ft is $5,088. In another deal, Fire Point Properties bought some property in Old Bailey Street, Central, for $26 million. - MING PAO GREAT Wall Electronics has bought back 176,000 shares at $1.54 a share, while C.P. Popkhand has bought back 6.19 million shares at prices between $2.25 and $2.325 a share. - HK ECONOMIC TIMES Chinese Press Digest is produced by Corporate Information Services. For pre-publication service and other services, telephone 865 5006 or fax 865 5835.