* HSI +0.6 pct, H-shares +1.1 pct, CSI300 +1.1 pct
* China CNR and CSR Corp’s merge plan sparks hopes of SOE reforms
* China port shares up due to approval of Tianjin FTZ project
By Chen Yixin and Kazunori Takada
SHANGHAI, Oct 28 (Reuters) - China and Hong Kong shares rebounded on Tuesday, breaking a multi-day string of declines, on hopes of more reforms to state-owned enterprises (SOEs), analysts said.
The Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.2 percent to 2,317.6 points by the midday break after falling for five trading days, while the CSI300 of the leading Shanghai and Shenzhen A-share listings gained 1.1 percent.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index edged up 0.6 percent to 23,289.01 points. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong climbed 1.1 percent.
Hope of more reforms to SOEs were fuelled by reports in state media on Tuesday that China’s top train makers, China CNR and CSR Corp , were planning to merge to create a giant able to compete globally.
“An important investment justification behind the performance of the A-shares and the Hong Kong market is the news about SOE reform,” said Shi Wenbien, stock strategist at Yunta Securities in Shanghai.
Port-related shares were among the biggest gainers in mainland markets as investors expected the government to approve more free trade zone (FTZ) projects.
Media reported recently that China’s State Council has approved the Tianjin FTZ project, which could be more open to foreign investors than a similar project in Shanghai.
Tianjin Port Co gained 5.8 percent and Tianjin Marine Shipping Co jumped 6.3 percent.
China and Hong Kong stocks fell on Monday after a landmark plan to link the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges was delayed, raising questions about Beijing’s patchy record on delivering reforms.
Hong Kong regulators said on Sunday that the connector pilot programme would not launch this week as originally expected as it had not won regulatory approval, and an MSCI executive said that the delay could risk pushing back the consideration of including A shares in MSCI’s emerging markets index.
Investor sentiment recovered in Hong Kong on Tuesday on expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will likely reinforce its willingness to wait a long while before hiking interest rates at a meeting later this week, one analyst said.
The consumer goods sector also was lifted by China’s top footwear retailer, Belle International Holdings, which posted solid first-half earnings on Monday. Belle soared more than 10 percent by midday on Tuesday. (Additional reporting by Shanghai Newroom; Editing by Kim Coghill)