Calling the connect's launch "imminent," Li told CNBC that he was upbeat about the link despite revenue from the existing Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect program falling 38 percent on-year to 71 million Hong Kong dollars ($9.2 million) in the six months to June 30.
Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission and the China Securities Regulatory Commission launched the Shanghai-Hong Kong Connect in 2014. The link, hailed as a major step in China's efforts to open up its capital market, allows foreign investors to place buy or sell orders for Shanghai's A-share market through brokers in Hong Kong. Chinese investors, meanwhile, are be able to use mainland brokers to invest in Hong Kong's H-share market.
The Shenzhen-Hong Kong connect would open up mainland China's second-largest stock exchange in the same way.