China’s Zhongrong Trust says unable to make some payments on time

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Troubled Chinese trust firm Zhongrong International Trust Co said it was unable to make payments on some trust products on time.

Zhongrong International Trust has already missed payments on dozens of investment products since the end of July, according to investor sources, triggering contagion fears in an economy that is already pressured by a deepening property crisis.

“Due to multiple internal and external factors, payments to some of the company’s trust products could not be made as scheduled,” the trust firm said in an online statement late on Friday.

It added that it has signed an agreement with Citic Trust and CCB Trust for so-called “entrusted management services”, allowing the two companies to “provide professional services for operations and managements”.

The agreement was meant to “improve the company’s operation and management efficiency,” Zhongrong said in the statement.

Zhongrong International Trust is controlled by asset manager Zhongzhi Enterprise Group, which has businesses ranging from mining to wealth management.

Zhongzhi is the latest major Chinese conglomerate to get into trouble, after the collapse of others including Anbang Insurance Group and HNA Group.

Zhongzhi told investors last month that it was facing a liquidity crisis and would undergo a debt restructuring, Reuters reported.

(Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Kim Coghill)