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FWD completes insurer acquisition; Suncorp to sell general insurance business

GREATER CHINA

* China Investment Corp., a sovereign wealth fund, BNP Paribas SA and Eurazeo are set to establish an investment fund to raise €1 billion to €1.5 billion to support continental European companies seeking expansion into China, the Financial Times reported.

* The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission is conducting a comprehensive survey on life insurers in the country, with plans to establish a supervisory dossier on the insurers, Beijing Business Today reported. Life insurers are required to submit reports on their governance, business operations, strategies, risk management and compliance, among others.

* Taiwan's Cathay United Bank Co. Ltd. said the lender's board of directors approved a proposal to cooperate with China's Alipay and introduce the latter's "transport code" on the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport Mass Rapid Transit line, Taipei Times reported. Cathay United Bank customers will be able to pay fares by scanning the code beginning in the fourth quarter.

* King's Town Commercial Bank Co. Ltd. said its board of directors approved a plan to merge two wholly-owned subsidiaries to expand customer services, Taipei Times reported. The bank said the integration of Tainan Life Insurance Agent Co. Ltd. and Fu Chen Property Insurance Agent Co. Ltd., effective June 3, is expected to cut operational costs and have a positive impact on net value and earnings per share.

JAPAN AND KOREA

* Viva Republica Co Ltd., which operates the Toss mobile peer-to-peer payment platform, has finalized a consortium to open Toss Bank, the third internet-only bank in South Korea, The Korea Herald reported.

* Norinchukin Bank has signed partnership agreements with JSCB for Investment and Development of Vietnam and BDO Unibank Inc. to increase its agricultural banking presence in Southeast Asia, Tokyo's The Nikkei reported.

* KakaoBank of Korea Corp. granted 5,200,000 common shares as stock options to 144 employees at 5,000 won per share. The stock options can be exercised from March 25, 2021.

ASEAN

* Customers of Krung Thai Bank PCL can receive their credit bureau report from the National Credit Bureau within three business days via email for requests made through online Krung Thai NEXT services, Manager Online reported.

* Hong Kong insurer FWD Group bought a 49% stake in HSBC Amanah Takaful (Malaysia) Bhd. that HSBC Holdings PLC holds through its indirect wholly-owned unit, HSBC Insurance (Asia-Pacific) Holdings Ltd., Asia Asset Management reported. FWD Group named Salim Majid Zain CEO of the Malaysian firm, which was renamed FWD Takaful.

* PT Bank Pembangunan Daerah Jawa Barat dan Banten Tbk recorded a net loss of 100.13 billion rupiah for the 2018 financial year, Bisnis Indonesia reported.

* The central bank of Vietnam is issuing new guidelines to monitor credit institutions' trading and handling of nonperforming loans and push them to increase their focus on bad debt settlement, Viet Nam News reported.

SOUTH ASIA

* Housing Development Finance Corp. Ltd. plans to raise up to 30 billion rupees through the issuance of secured redeemable nonconvertible debentures on a private placement basis to augment its long-term capital resources, Press Trust of India reported, citing a regulatory filing. The coupon rate of the bonds is fixed at 8.55% with a redemption date of March 27, 2029.

* Indian nonbanking financial company Finova Capital Pvt Ltd raised US$15 million from Faering Capital and Sequoia Capital India to expand its presence, The Hindu Business Line reported.

* Bangladesh-based Southeast Bank Ltd. is set to auction off the assets of two companies after they failed to repay loans worth 2.97 billion rupees, The Daily Star reported. The loans were taken from the bank in 2012 and 2013 by mortgaging 6.06 acres of land.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* National Australia Bank Ltd. will end the practice of giving out referral bonuses to businesses such as sports clubs and accountants for recommending customers to the bank after an inquiry found widespread wrongdoing across the financial sector, Reuters reported.

* Suncorp Group Ltd. is selling its Australian general insurance distribution business Resilium by the end of the financial year. The sale will be facilitated through a management buyout led by Adrian Kitchin, who will continue as managing director.

* The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority proposed to modify its prudential standard on credit risk management requirements for authorized deposit-taking institutions, requiring them to control credit risk by adopting prudent policies and procedures. The proposed reforms are due to be implemented from July 2020.

* The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority is also seeking feedback on its proposed updated guidance for managing information security risks, including cybercrime, which would replace existing guidelines for managing security risks.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

Middle East & Africa: UAE's ADFG, Shuaa in merger talks; Angola recoups assets; Tunisia holds key rate

Europe: Deutsche CEO 'skeptical' of Commerz deal; Deutsche exec pay; Brexit turmoil

Latin America: Mexican banks to scrap digital account fees; US levies sanctions against Bandes

North America: Turkish regulators probe JPMorgan; Citi fires 8 bankers in Hong Kong

Global Insurance: US annuity sales up; FEMA data breach; regulators target Lindberg loophole

R Sio, Sally Wang, Jonathan Cheah, Jaekwon Lim and Santibhap Ussavasodhi contributed to this report.

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