August 21, 2017 / 8:21 AM / a year ago

China Unicom, energy firms boost Hong Kong shares

SHANGHAI, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Hong Kong shares finished higher on Monday, supported by strong performance in energy and telecoms firms after China Unicom’s ownership reform plan was given the green light by China’s securities regulator.

The Hang Seng index ended up 0.4 percent at 27,154.68 points, while the China Enterprises Index gained 0.5 percent to 10,751.54.

Shares of China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd gained as much as 10.9 percent before closing up 3.5 percent at HK$12.36, its highest close in more than two years.

Trading in China Unicom’s Hong Kong-listed shares was suspended last Wednesday as the company announced plans for a mixed-ownership reform.

Media worries that the plan would violate rules on private placements were alleviated when the China Securities Regulatory Commission said late on Sunday that it would treat the plan as “an exceptional case.”

Oil producer CNOOC Ltd gained 3.7 percent ahead of second-quarter earnings due Aug. 24. Analysts have pointed to strong corporate earnings as one of the key drivers behind a recent rally in Hong Kong shares. (Reporting by Andrew Galbraith; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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