January 9 - International media reports suggest that Qianhai Kaiyuan Fund has agreed to subscribe to half of Cosco Shipping's (Coscol) CNY2.5 billion (USD402 million) private placement.

Earlier reports stated that Coscol was planning to raise the USD402 million through a private placement, selling 455 million of its A-shares and using the money to finance ship orders, pay off debt and boost liquidity.

Another report claimed that the reason behind Coscol's issuance of shares was to fund two semi-submersible vessels, three multipurpose vessels and four new heavy lift vessels, as well as some money to repay loans and replenish working capital.

If a planning rights issue is completed, it is said that Qianhai Kaiyuan Fund would become Coscol's second-largest shareholder, with a 10.6 percent stake in the company.

According to news reports, Qianhai Kaiyuan Fund is 33.3 percent owned by the local government-run Shaanxi Coal and Chemical Industry Group, while Beijing based Ever Union Asset Management and Zhongsheng Jinqi Investment Management each hold a one-third stake in the company.