THE stock exchange has defended Tsingtao Brewery's decision not to produce interim results, adding it will consider changing the rules so more information is given to shareholders in future. Herbert Hui Ho-ming, head of the listing division, said yesterday Alco Holdings, City Chiu Chow (Holdings), Le Saunda Holdings, Manhattan Card Co, Wanon International Holdings and at least five others in recent years had also not released interims if theaccounting period ended before the listing date. ''We don't think Tsingtao is isolated. There are quite a few companies which in the past have skipped announcing their results,'' he said. He denied the exchange was being soft on Tsingtao, the first mainland-incorporated business to list H shares. The shares which started trading on July 15 are in very strong demand from local investors. Interim results would have been for the six months ended June 30. Mr Hui said he might discuss the matter further with company representatives over the next few days. Kenneth Koo, his deputy, is travelling to Beijing soon and will give feedback on existing H shares. Mr Koo said he would recommend that future H-share listings should raise US$100 million each. Mr Hui said his division was happy with the current system allowing interims to be skipped, although it was considering whether companies which took advantage of it should be required in future to reassure shareholders that the financial position had notchanged significantly. This would not amount to a full set of interim figures, he said. ''I think the key point is whether there are any adverse financial developments which should be brought to shareholders' attention,'' he said. The decision to skip the interims has been criticised by merchant bankers, who generally want companies to make as much data public as possible.