LONDON (Reuters) – HSBC said on Thursday it had received regulatory approval in China to take full ownership of its life insurance joint venture in the country, as it continues to expand its non-core banking services.

HSBC has got clearance from the Shanghai office of the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission to buy the remaining 50% in its venture HSBC Life China, the bank said.

HSBC first agreed the deal in May 2020 in order to fully own the company to comply with China’s rules on foreign ownership of insurance companies.

The life insurance venture, launched in 2009, is headquartered in Shanghai and has a presence in ten cities across China, the bank said.

Under CEO Noel Quinn, HSBC is injecting $3.5 billion into its wealth and personal banking business in a bid to become Asia’s top wealth manager by 2025.

(Reporting by Iain Withers; Editing by Rachel Armstrong)