A SHADOW of doubt has been cast on overseas listings of Chinese state-owned enterprises by China's first national Company Law, which came into effect yesterday, says a Hong Kong lawyer. Uncertainties arise as there was a regulatory vacuum for mainland enterprises seeking to list abroad, because a new set of relevant rules had yet to be announced, while the existing legislation - the Standard Opinion on Joint Stock Limited Companies - became obsolete on July 1, according to Leung Cheuk-yan of law firm Baker & McKenzie. The long-awaited rules on overseas listings is one of the eight complementary regulations to the Company Law. ''Problems are caused by uncertainties from the transition when China switches to the Company Law from the Standard Opinion,'' said Mr Leung. He pointed to discrepancies between the Company Law and the Standard Opinion. For instance, the Standard Opinion required a quorum of 50 per cent of the voting rights to convene a shareholders' meeting, but there was no mention of this in the Company Law. Chen Dagang, director of the law department at the China Securities and Regulatory Commission, expected the State Council to announce the new rules for overseas listings in two or three weeks. The nine enterprises in the first batch listed in Hong Kong, or H shares, and Luoyang Glass, the first of a second batch of Chinese listing candidates, were incorporated under the Standard Opinion. Mr Leung estimated about three to five Chinese candidates would be affected by the present situation as they had been conducting restructuring work for the flotation in accordance with the Standard Opinion. He said the case would be worse for those floating shares in the United States, or N shares, because they would not be regulated by mandatory provisions as required by Hong Kong securities authorities. Meanwhile, Mr Leung noted several shortcomings with existing Chinese securities legislation. For example, it was a rush for Hong Kong practitioners to finish an annual report within the required 120 days after the end of a fiscal year, against six months as required by Hong Kong rules.