China Telecom, China Mobile and Unicom apply to New York Stock Exchange to reverse delistings ordered by Donald Trump
- Request to review deslistings came as Joe Biden inaugurated as next US President
- NYSE delisted three of China’s biggest telecoms in response to executive order by former US President Donald Trump
Joe Biden becomes 46th US president in scaled-down, socially-distanced inauguration
Shares of the three telecoms companies fell amid a declining market in Hong Kong after their filing. China Telecom retraced 1.7 per cent to HK$2.29 after rising by as much as 1.7 per cent. China Mobile slipped by 0.1 per cent to HK$48.95, retuning its earlier 1.5 per cent intraday gain, while the shares of Unicom lost 1.8 per cent to HK$4.88.
American investors, including pension funds and university endowments, have until November 11 this year to divest their holdings in any designated Chinese military companies following the executive order last November.
The NYSE did not immediately respond to a request for comment outside of US business hours.
There is likely to be a “softer tone” between Washington and Beijing following Biden’s inauguration, said Stephen Schwarzman, the chief executive of private equity giant Blackstone Group and a Trump supporter.
“To not have these two countries working in a cooperative fashion seems exceptionally odd and unproductive for the citizens of both of their countries,” Schwarzman said in a discussion at the Asian Financial Forum on Tuesday.
“It will take some time. In areas like climate, health, terrorism, as well as some economic issues, there’s substantial overlap in the interests of these countries and the interests of the world,” he added. “I expect to see much less tension. It would be hard to imagine escalating tension from here, frankly.”
The three Chinese telecoms companies listed their ADSs in New York following their initial public offerings in Hong Kong, giving US-based and European investors access to trade their equities during US market hours.
China Mobile was among the first so-called red-chip companies to list in New York in 1997, joined by China Unicom in 2000 and China Telecom in 2002.
Their stocks were lightly traded in New York before their delisting and their US investors only accounted for between 5 per cent and no more than 12 per cent of their outstanding shares.
The ADSs also were fungible with their H-shares in Hong Kong, which means they could be exchanged for their counterparts, providing an exit option for investors ahead of the delisting.