(Yicai Global) May 8 -- Hong Kong’s chief executive has issued a written approval of the appointment of Laura Cha Shih May-lung as the new chairwoman Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd. after Sir Chung-kong Chow stepped down following six years' of service at the annual general meeting last month, the bourse announced yesterday.
The appointment, which took effect May 4, will remain in force until the bourse's annual general meeting in 2020. Cha was appointed by the Financial Secretary as a director of the HKEX Board in February for a two-year term under the Securities and Futures Ordinance (SFO). Her chairmanship will coincide with her term of appointment as a director of the HKEX Board, which will expire at the end of the 2020 Annual General Meeting, per a government press release.
Growing competition and challenges in the global market mean Hong Kong must improve itself and hone its core competitiveness, Cha has previously said. Following the introduction of a new listing system, the HKEX will do its best as an international stock exchange to attract new companies, players in the new economy or traditional economy alike, she pledged.
Cha, 68 years old, is chair of the Financial Services Development Council. She formerly served as vice chairwoman of China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC). She is the first woman to chair the Hong Kong exchange.
She was appointed CSRC’s vice chairwoman in February 2001, making her one of the few people from Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan to hold a vice-ministerial level position in the mainland.
Cha saw the appointment as an opportunity for her to get involved in the mainland’s financial market reform, she noted in an interview with China Central Television at that time. Her installation thus seems likely to impart a more mainland-centric focus to the HKEX.
Editor: Ben Armour