JP Morgan predicts almost unchanged Asian equity issuance this year with firms, not including Japan, selling stock worth about US$50 billion. It expects the market for new equity issues to pick up next year. JP Morgan's new managing director and co-head of equity capital and derivative markets Nick Andrews said: 'The market is going to continue to be dominated by North Asia and so Greater China and South Korea are where all the action is.' Greater China accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the $15 billion in equity and equity linked proceeds raised in Asia, ex-Japan, in the first half. The mainland is expected to continue privatising large state-owned enterprises in the telecommunications, power, banking and possibly insurance industries. By the end of this month, Bank of China (Hong Kong) will raise up to HK$25 billion and Goldman Sachs will reportedly help Ping' An Insurance try to raise 10 billion yuan (about HK$9.37 billion) from a Hong Kong-listing before the year end. Morgan Stanley is managing Guangdong Guangdian Power Grid's US$1.5 billion Hong Kong initial public offering (IPO). Merrill Lynch is working to take China Telecommunications public in Hong Kong to raise between $3 billion and $5 billion. China Unicom is also planning to raise up to $5 billion in a Hong Kong offering once global telecoms stocks rebound. At the same time, Sinotrans Group plans to list its logistics division in Hong Kong with Credit Suisse First Boston's help. 'In addition, I think the big focus for us and our competitors is what we call the P-chips, the smaller privately run or privately managed IPOs in China as opposed to the big state-owned enterprise privatisation,' Mr Andrews said. JP Morgan has two mainland private enterprises in the technology sector preparing to list in Hong Kong. Hong Kong news media has reported the firm is helping Shenzhen-listed Zhongxing Telecom go public in Hong Kong and New York to raise between $300 million and $500 million. Mr Andrews also mentioned a 'number of transactions in Korea' and convertible bonds issues in Taiwan as well as a Singapore property company planning an IPO.