March 15, 2017 11:45 pm JST

China, Hong Kong to link bond markets this year

Program aims to expand overseas investors' access to mainland debt

ISSAKU HARADA, Nikkei staff writer

BEIJING -- Hong Kong and mainland China will link their bond markets later this year on a trial basis, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang told reporters Wednesday.

This arrangement, similar to existing schemes connecting Hong Kong and mainland stock markets, is expected to let Hong Kong investors trade mainland bonds on exchanges while offering mainland investors reciprocal access. Individuals may be permitted to participate in the program alongside institutional investors.

The bond market link will help Hong Kong maintain its position as an international financial hub and offer Hong Kong residents more investment options, Li said at a news conference after the end of the annual session of the National People's Congress. The program likely also aims to further Beijing's goal of having mainland bonds added to international indexes.

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