Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd made an unexpected US$36.6b bid for London Stock Exchange Group Plc, a bold move that could upend the United Kingdom bourse's combination with data provider Refinitiv.
But it wants the LSE to scrap its plans to buy data firm, Refinitiv.
Shares in LSE, which were trading more than 17 percent higher in reaction to the news at 0834 GMT, were trading 4.5 percent higher at 1010 GMT.
"A combined group will be strongly placed to benefit from the dynamic and evolving macroeconomic landscape, whilst enhancing the long-term resilience and relevance of London and Hong Kong as global financial centers", Li said.
Shares in London Stock Exchange Group surged 10 per cent after the approach was revealed but settled back at 5 per cent up by lunchtime.
The proposed transaction would only go ahead if the LSE's proposed takeover of Refinitiv does not proceed, it said.
The proposed transaction, HKEX said, is going to provide a clear path to open up Mainland China's capital markets, tap Asia's growing wealth, and "reinforce Hong Kong's position as the key connection between Mainland China, Asia and the rest of the world".
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Hong Kong lawmaker and HKEX shareholder Christopher Cheung said he was concerned most about the offer price, and what LSE could offer to HKEX.
In 2017, the European Union blocked an attempted merger between the LSE and Germany's Deutsche Boerse, saying a "de facto monopoly" would be created for some financial services.
HKEX said it has already begun discussions with certain regulators in Britain and Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong government threw its support behind the takeover bid.
HKEX said in a statement on September 11 that it has made an offer worth 8,361 pence a share to combine the two companies.
HKEX said it meant to apply for a secondary listing of its shares on the LSE once the deal has gone through.