The Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor （QFII）program (Chinese:合格的境外机构投资者) is a Chinese program that was launched in 2002 to allow licensed foreign investors to buy and sell yuan-denominated "A" shares in China's mainland stock exchanges (in Shanghai and Shenzhen).
Chinese mainland stock exchanges were previously closed off to foreign investors due to China's exercise of tight capital controls which restrict the movement of assets in-and-out of the country. As of February 2009, a total of 79 foreign institutional investors have been approved under the QFII program. Foreign access to China's yuan-denominated "A" stocks are still limited, with quotas placed under the QFII program amounting to $30 billion.
Regulations of the QFII program are based on "Temporary Regulation on Domestic Securities Investment by Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor", which is publicized on November 5, 2002 and ceased to be in effect on September 1, 2006, and "Regulation on Domestic Securities Investment by Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor", which is publicized on August 24, 2006, and came into effect on September 1, 2006.
Pursuant to "Regulation on Domestic Securities Investment by Qualified Foreign Institutional Investor"，to qualify as a QFII, the candidate must:
has stable finance, good credibility, meet the minimum asset scale set by China Securities Regulatory Commission（CSRC),
the number of staffs meet the requirement set by the authority in its own country or area,
has healthy governing structure and complete internal control system, received no significant punishment in the last 3 year,
candidate's home country has complete legal and supervision system, and its home country or home area has signed Memorandum of Understanding（MOU） with CSRC, and maintains effective supervision cooperation,
other requirements set by CSRC based on prudence.