In flip-flop, NYSE to delist three Chinese companies after all

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is going ahead with plans to delist shares of three Chinese state-owned phone carriers under an executive order from United States (US) President Donald Trump, reversing course just days after saying they would not be delisted.

The exchange said trading in the three companies, China Telecom Corp Ltd, China Mobile Ltd and China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd, will be suspended on January 11.

The decision marks the latest about-face for the NYSE on whether to delist the companies in accordance with Trump’s executive order from November barring Americans from investing in securities issued by companies deemed to be linked to the Chinese military.

The NYSE initially said on January 1 it would delist the companies, only to withdraw that decision on Monday, cited some “ambiguity” about whether the three companies were in fact covered by Trump’s order.

The exchange said in a statement on Wednesday it decided to proceed with the delisting “following new specific guidance” from the Treasury Department, which oversees the enforcement of the executive order. The statement also said the companies can appeal the decision.

The Trump administration imposed export controls and other sanctions on some Chinese companies, visa curbs on members of the ruling party and other restrictions. The Chinese government accused Washington of misusing national security as an excuse to hamper competition and warned that Trump’s order would hurt US and other investors worldwide.

File photo shows staff members using their smartphones at a display from Chinese telecommunications firm China Mobile at the PT Expo in Beijing. PHOTO: AP