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MOVES-BlackRock appoints veteran Tang Xiaodong to head China operations

SINGAPORE, April 17 (Reuters) - BlackRock Inc, the world's largest asset manager, said on Wednesday it has appointed investment and regulatory veteran Tang Xiaodong to head China operations, seeking to capitalise on Beijing's opening-up of financial sector to foreign investors.

BlackRock, which managed $6.52 trillion in assets globally as of end-March, said Tang will oversee development and execution of the firm's long-term business strategy in China, effective from July, and report directly to Geraldine Buckingham, head of Asia Pacific.

"China is a strategic priority for us and we remain very engaged in pursuing our long-term strategy in this key market," said BlackRock's Chief Executive Larry Fink, commenting on the appointment of Tang.

Tang, also known as Tony, most recently was chief executive of the Hong Kong unit of GF Securities Co. Before joining GF Holdings (Hong Kong), he was chief executive of Beijing-based China Asset Management Company, which managed more than 1 trillion yuan ($149.11 billion) in assets, as of end-March.

Prior to that, Tang worked for the Chinese Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) from 2009 to 2014. He held various positions including deputy director-general at the Department of International Affairs and deputy inspector at the Department of Fund Supervision at the CSRC.

($1 = 6.7065 Chinese yuan) (Reporting By Shu Zhang, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)