China delays Fortis deal with Ping An

The Chinese authorities have delayed approval for a partnership between the Dutch-Belgian bank insurance group Fortis and Chinese insurer Ping An, reports Thursday’s Financieele Dagblad.

The delay means Fortis has not yet received much needed the €2.2bn that Ping An has agreed to pay for a stake in its asset management subsidiary Fortis Investments, the paper says.
It is unclear why the Chinese authorities have not yet approved the transaction. ‘It’s part of the administrative process. This is not unusual and on top of that the delay is also due to the Olympic Games,’ according to a Fortis spokesman quoted in the FD.
Fortis had inititally expected the green light in the second quarter.
Fortis needs the Ping An cash to repair its shrunken buffer capital. The company needs to close a shortfall of €3bn over the coming months and without the capital injection from Ping An this will rise to over €5bn, says the FD.

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