China In-Focus — Shares drop; Russian oil imports soar; Sequoia China raises $9bn

China In-Focus — Shares drop; Russian oil imports soar; Sequoia China raises $9bn
China In-Focus — Shares drop; Russian oil imports soar; Sequoia China raises $9bn

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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: Shanghai shares dropped the most for six weeks on Wednesday, as China continued to grapple with COVID-19 flare-ups, while energy stocks tracked a sell-off in the global oil market.

The Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.4 percent, the biggest one-day percentage fall since May 24. The blue-chip Index lost 1.5 percent, while Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng Index weakened 1.2 percent.

Russian crude oil imports soar

China’s crude oil imports from Russia soared 55 percent from a year earlier to a record level in May, displacing Saudi Arabia as the top supplier as refiners cashed in on discounted supplies amid sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.

Imports of Russian oil, including supplies pumped via the East Siberia Pacific Ocean pipeline and seaborne shipments from Russia’s European and Far Eastern ports, totalled nearly 8.42 million tons, according to data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs.

That’s equivalent to roughly 1.98 million barrels per day and up a quarter from 1.59 million bpd in April.

Saudi Arabia trailed as the second-largest supplier, with May volumes up 9 percent on-year at 7.82 million tons, or 1.84 million bpd. This was down from April’s 2.17 million bpd.

Customs data released on Monday also showed China imported 260,000 tons of Iranian crude oil last month, its third shipment of Iran oil since last December, confirming an earlier Reuters report.

Sequoia China raises $9 billion amid hopes crackdown is easing

Sequoia Capital China has raised a total of nearly $9 billion for four new funds amid investor hopes that the authorities are easing a regulatory crackdown on the tech sector, said a person with direct knowledge of the matter.

The latest fundraising by Sequoia China, which according to the person originally targeted at least $8 billion and was 50 percent oversubscribed, underscores how global investors are counting on leading investment managers to cut deals in China’s new economy industries following the unprecedented crackdown.

Sequoia China, widely viewed as a bellwether for Chinese tech investment, launched the fundraising early this year and has attracted commitments from investors in the US, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, including pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and university endowments.

Sequoia China declined to comment. The person with direct knowledge of the matter declined to be identified as the information is not public. News of the fundraising was first reported by news website The Information.

The four funds will primarily invest in Chinese start-ups at different stages of their life cycle, with a focus on the technology, health care and consumer sectors, said the person.

(With input from Reuters) 

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