Hong Kong has certainly advertised its advantages as an
international listing destination. But Japanese retailer Fast
Retailing's listing of Hong Kong Depositary Receipts (HDRs) has
highlighted the problems with the HDR regime, and more broadly,
its rules for overseas company listings.
Fast Retailing's HDR listing has been heralded as the return
of secondary listings in Hong Kong. It is the first since the
Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) and Hong Kong Exchange
(HKEx) released their Joint Policy Statement (JPS) on the
listing of overseas companies in September 2013.
Hong Kong has had a dearth of overseas listings since 2011.
The JPS has attempted to streamline the listing process by
listing the waivers that HKEx is prepared to grant for each
jurisdiction. But it has not articulated any differences in the
vetting process for secondary versus primary overseas listings
– which is a hurdle for HDR listings. Appendix V of