A senior Nomura banker has been banned from leaving mainland China, a move connected to a long-running investigation into the country’s top tech dealmaker Bao Fan, according to people familiar with the matter, reports the Financial Times. The restrictions on Charles Wang Zhonghe, chair of investment banking for China at the Hong Kong arm of Japanese bank Nomura International, only applied to travel outside mainland China and he was not in detention, one person familiar with the matter said.
But the exit ban on a veteran Hong Kong-based banker of Wang’s standing will send a chill through China’s overseas business community, where foreign chamber of commerce surveys indicate investor confidence is already low. The US state department has warned visitors to China to reconsider travel in the country “due to the arbitrary enforcement of local laws, including in relation to exit bans, and the risk of wrongful detentions”.
Wang’s travel freeze follows the months-long disappearance of tech sector dealmaker Bao, founder of investment group China Renaissance, and of Cong Lin, another of its former senior executives. Bao has not been seen since February, when the company said he was “co-operating in an investigation.”