China's CIC set to buy stake in UK utility - report

LONDON Fri Jan 20, 2012 3:31am GMT

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LONDON (Reuters) - China Investment Corporation (CIC) is poised to buy a stake in the holding company that owns Thames Water, the water network that serves London, the Financial Times reported on Friday.

The newspaper cited one person familiar with the situation as saying China's $410 billion (265 billion pound) sovereign wealth fund is close to agreeing the acquisition of up to 10 percent of the UK utility with its holding company Kemble Water.

The deal would be the fund's first acquisition in the UK and follows investment talks in Beijing this week with British finance minister George Osborne.

The deal would mark the second recent acquisition of a stake in the utility by a foreign investor after Abu Dhabi Investment Authority acquired 9.9 percent of Thames Water in December from a consortium led by Macquarie Group.

The parties involved could not be reached for immediate comment.

(Reporting by Stephen Mangan; Editing by Gary Hill)

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