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China state fund eyes Facebook stake

business Updated: Jul 02, 2011 14:01 IST

A state-owned fund in China is reportedly interested in buying a stake in social network Facebook, said a media report.

A source told US business magazine Business Insider that China's sovereign wealth fund - the China Investment Corp - is hoping it could buy a stake in Facebook, large enough "to matter", the Shanghai Daily reported.

Financial firm Citibank is reportedly trying to acquire as much as $1.2 billion worth of Facebook stock on behalf of two sovereign wealth funds - one from China and another from the Middle East, the daily said.

The sovereign fund did not comment on the issue.

Facebook is not available on the Chinese mainland. Its founder Mark Zuckerberg is reportedly keen to invest in the Chinese market, which has more than 400 million internet users.

Facebook is currently one of the most popular social networking websites with over 500 million users.

Zuckerberg is expected to visit Shanghai in September for his second trip to the country. In 2010, the 27-year-old met leaders of top Chinese internet companies, including Baidu, Sina, Alibaba and Tencent.