Hong Kong shares are set to start firmer after falling to a one-month low in the previous session, buoyed by a solid lead offsore on positive U.S. and euro zone economic data.
On Tuesday, the Hang Seng Index fell 2.3 percent to 23,148.5 points, its worst single-day loss since Nov. 8, weighed by a share placement by oil refiner Sinopec. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong slid 2.8 percent to its lowest in about a month.
China unveiled sweeping tax reforms late on Tuesday to make wealthy state-owned firms, property speculators and the rich pay more to narrow a yawning gap between an urban elite and hundreds of millions of rural poor.
Elsewhere in Asia, Japan's Nikkei was up 2.4 percent, while South Korea's KOSPI was up 0.3 percent at 0057 GMT.
FACTORS TO WATCH:
* SABMiller, the world's second-biggest brewer, is to expand further into high-growth regional markets in China after a local joint venture with China Resources Enterprise agreed to buy Kingway Brewery assets for 5.38 billion yuan ($863 million).
* Hong Kong property and investment company Great Eagle Holdings Ltd has mandated HSBC Plc and Deutsche Bank AG to lead a proposed $800 million initial public offering for its full-service hotel business, IFR reported on Tuesday, citing sources with knowledge of the plans.
* Container shipping companies, including industry leader Maersk Line, are seeking spot freight rate hikes of around 16 percent on Asia to North America routes, aiming to set a benchmark for upcoming negotiations on key annual price contracts. An industry group that includes the unit of A.P. Moeller Maersk and China COSCO's COSCO Container Lines has recommended general rate rises of $400 per 40-foot equivalent unit (FEU) to the U.S. West Coast, effective April 1.
* Silver Wheaton Corp said on Tuesday it had signed a $1.9 billion deal with Brazil's Vale SA to acquire a share of the gold produced at some of the company's mines in Brazil and Canada.
* Yantai North Andre Juice Co Ltd said it proposed to issue up to 100 million A shares in China and would seek regulatory approval for a listing of the shares in Shanghai or Shenzhen, raising proceeds to fund a 412 million yuan expansion of its is juice concentrate production lines in the mainland.
* Yuexiu Property Co Ltd said its contracted sales value for January amounted to about 2.88 billion yuan, up 1,789 percent from the same period a year ago.
* Coal and bulk commodity trader and property investor China Chengtong Development Group Ltd said it expected its 2012 net profit to rise significantly due to a significant increase in its volume of bulk commodity trade during the year and gains derived from negative goodwill.
* Zhongyu Gas Holdings Ltd said it expected to post a significant increase in profit for 2012 thanks to an improvement in sales of piped gas, gas pipeline construction and sales of natural gas during the year.
* KWG Property Holding Ltd said its pre-sales value for January amounted to about 1.34 billion yuan, representing a month-on-month increase of 32 percent and a year-on-year increase of 231 percent.