The China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) has allowed Manulife Investment Management to take complete control of its mainland Chinese joint venture, a move that signals Beijing's willingness to open up its financial markets to foreign investors. The approval was for the Canadian asset manager to pay USD237.22m to acquire the 51% of the shares in Manulife TEDA Fund Management owned by its JV partner Tianjin TEDA International Holding. Manulife claims to be the first foreign asset manager to receive government approval to convert its JV into a fully-owned fund management firm. Michael Dommermuth, head of wealth and asset management in Asia at Manulife Investment Management, said the approval is an important milestone for the company as it means it will have direct access to China's large and fast-growing retail fund market.
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