12 October 2017Insurance

China’s regulator bans funding for HNA insurance

China’s regulator has banned China’s Bohai Life Insurance from providing financial aid “in any form” to HNA Group in the next six months while it improves its corporate governance, Reuters reported on Oct. 12.

Bohai Life has also been barred from conducting any fund-related connected transactions with HNA during the period, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) reportedly said.

A spot review of Bohai Life from March 24 to April 15 had found problems in managing shareholders, internal controls and connected party transactions, it added.

Bohai Life said in a statement on Thursday it had a plan to rectify the problems.

The ban adds fresh pressure on HNA Group’s financing situation after the Chinese government in June told major banks to review their credit exposure to the highly-leveraged company.

Privately-owned HNA has announced deals over the last two years of more than $50 billion, Reuters said. Some funding for HNA’s acquisitions has come from the sales of short-term universal life insurance products through insurance companies and banks it controls.

HNA, which owns airlines, hotels, real estate and a near 10 percent stake in Germany’s Deutsche Bank, controls Bohai Life through its Shenzhen-listed Bohai Capital Holding.

In four separate notices, the CIRC has also banned Pearl River Life Insurance, Shanghai Life Insurance, Sunshine Life Insurance and Junkang Life Insurance from conducting some financial transactions with related parties in the next six months.

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