Shares in Hainan-related companies climbed on Monday after an official announcement over the weekend that international agencies have now been invited to bid for the planning and design of the tropical island’s pilot free-trade zone. The zone will have an exhibition centre at its core, in its capital Haikou’s Jiangdong New District, covering about 298 square kilometres, Haikou’s mayor Ding Hui said. Ten bidders are scheduled to be selected by June 27, with their preliminary proposals expected to be submitted for evaluation by a committee of experts in September. Beijing plans to transform the southernmost Chinese island into a hub for gambling and foreign investment. As well as the pilot international free-trade zone, a horse racing track and sports lotteries are on the planners’ schedule. “Hainan’s free-trade zone is expected to be more open, innovation-focused and obtain stronger policy support than others in the country. These stocks are outperforming as the plan materialises,” said Wu Kan, a fund manager at Shanshan Finance. Sundiro Holding, which is engaged in a range of businesses from logistics to the sale of electric bicycles to property, rose by its daily limit of 10 per cent to 5.36 yuan (US 83.5 cents). Haima Automobile Group jumped 8.27 per cent to 4.06 yuan. Xinlong Holding (Group) added 0.38 per cent to 5.35 yuan, Hainan RuiZe New Building Material climbed 2.67 per cent to 11.92 yuan, Hainan Strait Shipping was 2.59 per cent higher at 26.17 yuan, HNA Innovation was up 0.98 per cent at 5.15 yuan and Hainan Expressway advanced 3.99 per cent to 6 yuan. Mainland stocks also rose on Monday, with the Shanghai Composite Index gaining 0.52 per cent or 16.05 points to 3,091.19 while the CSI 300 – which tracks large caps listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen – increased 0.98 per cent or 36.99 points to 3,807.58. The Shenzhen Composite Index tacked on 0.09 per cent or 1.63 points to 1,747.96 although the Nasdaq style ChiNext dropped 0.39 per cent or 1.62 points to 1,827.85. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 1.67 per cent to 30,997.98 on Monday.