Money manager Global Asset Management is making a concerted push to expand in Taiwan in anticipation of an easing of rules that would allow local investors to buy hedge funds. David Lam, managing director for clients in Asia, said the company, owned by Zurich-based UBS, was considering introducing hedge funds and fund of hedge funds into the Taiwan market. Taiwan is enacting regulation to control the inflows of hedge funds, possibly with the aim of allowing institutional investors to buy this type of alternate investment, according to media reports. However, hedge funds will still be banned from investing in Taiwan's stock market. Many foreign investment firms, hoping to jump in early to seize market share on the island, are reportedly closely monitoring developments in relation to hedge funds. Mr Lam said: 'We are looking to market more aggressively into the Taiwan market due to ... the anticipation that the Taiwan government will continue to relax local regulations governing the ability of institutional clients investing in hedge funds and fund of hedge funds.' Global Asset Management is also hoping to tap more wealthy individuals to manage their investment portfolios, expand the reach of its institutional business and distribute funds through third parties in Taiwan. This is expected to help the company maintain its aggressive expansion in Asia in recent years. Its assets under management in the region have grown 30 per cent a year since 2001. Mr Lam said the number of Asian clients also increased 50 per cent over the same period. Hedge funds became notorious in Asia during the financial crisis, when offshore funds, with war chests often amounting to billions of dollars, were blamed for exacerbating the collapse of the region's currencies and stock markets.