China REITs: New guidelines for acquisitions and equity fundraising by PRC infrastructure REITs, and expanded coverage for affordable rental housing

In brief

The Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE) and Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) published new trial guidelines on 31 May 2022 for follow-on acquisitions and equity fundraising by PRC infrastructure REITs ("C-REITs").

The New Acquisition Guidelines set out detailed requirements for post-listing acquisitions by C-REITs, including which targets and transaction parties may qualify, as well as the applicable disclosure and shareholders' approval requirements. The New Acquisition Guidelines also provide parameters for post-listing equity offerings by C-REITs to finance these acquisitions or asset enhancement initiatives.

These guidelines represent another important development in the C-REIT regime as they effectively pave the way for C-REITs to grow organically through acquiring new assets, as well as raising new funds and expanding investor base by equity offerings, which distinguish them from their quasi-REITs predecessors.


In another important C-REIT development, the SZSE and SSE also published the Affordable Rental Housing Guidelines on 15 July 2022, setting out certain criteria for establishing an affordable rental housing C-REIT. These guidelines also follow the SZSE's approval of Hotland Innovation Shenzhen Talent Affordable Rental Housing C-REIT on 11 July 2022, and the SSE's approval of CICC Xiamen Affordable Rental Housing C-REIT on 14 July 2022.

The recent promotion of C-REITs to cover affordable rental housing, along with other strategic assets such as clean energy, signifies the PRC authorities' determination to, by enhancing the regime for new financial products such as C-REITs, address social issues and further broader national policies and objectives.

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