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BNP Paribas Partners with Changjiang to Develop China's Domestic Securities Market

BNP Paribas S. A. ("BNP Paribas") and Changjiang Securities Co. Ltd. ("Changjiang Securities") have entered into a Framework Agreement for the establishment of the Sino-Foreign Joint Venture Securities Company in China, (the "Framework Agreement") and a Cooperation Agreement in the spirit of long-term business cooperation. As a wholly owned subsidiary of BNP Paribas and its equity investment banking arm in the Asia Pacific region (ex-Japan), BNP Paribas Peregrine is designated and prepared to implement the joint venture with full momentum and commitment.

At this stage of China's entry into the WTO, BNP Paribas and Changjiang Securities are entering into one of the earliest partnerships to go into the domestic market in China. The partnership aims to serve the Mainland-based Chinese companies and overseas companies with business establishments in China.

The signing ceremony has received a high level of attention and support. Representative from the French Embassy in China, government leader of Hubei Provincial Government, officials in Beijing and Shanghai, and over 100 representatives from the financial community and media attended the ceremony at the Beijing Hotel, Beijing.

The Framework Agreement sets out the principal terms, which prepare for the proposed establishment of the joint venture securities company as permitted under the PRC laws and regulations. The proposed joint venture, upon its establishment, will provide a wide range of financial services as permitted under the PRC laws and regulations and as agreed by both partners, like covering distribution, offering, underwriting of securities in the primary market; financial advisory; mergers and acquisitions and other financial services.

Mr. Ming Yun Cheng, Chairman of Changjiang Securities, commented, "Being one of the earliest securities companies in the China market, Changjiang Securities has established a client network supported by extensive marketing resources, and has built up an experienced team well-versed in the market rules and regulations. BNP Paribas, as the Number One bank in France and a leading financial institution in Europe, is able to provide valuable international investment banking expertise. We are committed to devoting our full resources in developing the proposed joint venture into a successful franchise." He also said, "China has become a huge economic force in the global market and is progressing with very positive market and regulatory developments in the securities market. The proposed joint venture is fully committed in helping the Mainland China companies or overseas companies to fully capitalise the China growth opportunities."

Representative of BNP Paribas and Deputy Group CEO of BNP Paribas Peregrine Mr. Guillaume Dry said, "BNP Paribas has a deep rooted and long-term presence in China since 1860. The signing ceremony marks another important milestone and demonstrates the long-term commitment of the BNP Paribas Group in continuing to develop its business in the Asia Pacific region and in particular, China. We are very delighted to be able to share the local knowledge and nation-wide extensive connections of Changjiang Securities in going forward."

The partners have designated a full team that is well prepared to proceed with the establishment of the joint venture. Formal application will be submitted to the China Securities Regulatory Commission as and when the rules and regulations are released.

The Partner - Changjiang Securities Co. Ltd.

Changjiang Securities is a well-established, nation-wide securities house with a network of 25 branches in major cities in China, and employs nearly 1000 people. The company has been granted a full licence to conduct securities activities in China. Despite the difficult year of 2001, Changjiang was ranked 8th on a nation-wide basis in terms of profitability. It has led over 100 companies in fund raising and has reached over RMB 800 billion in terms of securities trading volume (110 billion euros).

The Partner - BNP Paribas Group

BNP Paribas is a powerful financial services group created through a successful merger, with solid roots in Europe, leading positions in Asia and an active presence in the United States. BNP Paribas is the Number One bank in the Euro Zone in terms of market capitalisation ( as at March 1, 2002 ) and in terms of profitability. BNP Paribas has operations in over 85 countries with over 85,000 staff worldwide.

BNP Paribas Peregrine is the equity investment banking arm of BNP Paribas Group in the Asia Pacific region ( Ex-Japan ). Operating within the global equity business line of BNP Paribas Group, BNP Paribas Peregrine has presence in major cities in Asia Pacific and has been in Beijing and Shanghai since its inception.