The Southbound Trading under China's Bond Connect program was officially launched on Friday, another major measure taken by the country to support development of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
According to a joint announcement issued by the People's Bank of China (PBOC) and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), the southbound channel will enable mainland institutional investors to invest in the Hong Kong bond market through connection between the mainland and Hong Kong financial infrastructure services institutions.
At present, the annual total quota of Southbound Bond Connect is 500 billion yuan (about 77.38 billion U.S. dollars) equivalent, and the daily quota is 20 billion yuan (about 3.1 billion dollars) equivalent.
Bank of China (Hong Kong) (BOCHK) said on Friday that it has started conducting bond trades with onshore institutional investors under the connect program.
The bank successfully commenced the southbound business on the first day of its launch, offering a full range of products and services, Sun Yu, vice chairman and chief executive of the bank, said. "BOCHK will continuously enhance its market making, custody and settlement functions, with a view to further contributing to the development of southbound Bond Connect."
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has unveiled a list of 13 financial institutions as market makers for the program, including BOCHK, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (Asia), Bank of Communications' Hong Kong Branch, HSBC, and Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong).
In July 2017, the PBOC and HKMA jointly rolled out the northbound channel of the program. The accumulated turnover of the northbound channel over the past four years reached 12.3 trillion yuan (about 1.9 trillion dollars).