• Kyodo

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Hanshin Electric Railway Co. has said Eiji Tamai, who was among nine candidates recommended by the Murakami investment fund to join the Hanshin board of directors, had withdrawn his candidacy.

Tamai told reporters that Yoshiaki Murakami, the financier who leads the fund, has accepted his decision.

The fund is Hanshin’s biggest investor.

Murakami has agreed that Hanshin will select a candidate in lieu of Tamai, Tamai said.

A special adviser to Sumitomo Mitsui Card Co., Tamai has been an outside board member of the railway company since 1998 and plans to leave the post soon after a general meeting of Hanshin shareholders on June 29, Hanshin said.

The Murakami fund, which has acquired some 46 percent of Hanshin shares, had recommended Tamai and eight fund executives, including Murakami himself, as candidates for a board member election at the shareholders’ meeting. Nine out of the 16 board seats will be up for election at the meeting.

Tamai said he has sided with Hanshin in the contest and does not want to be seen as being on the side of the Murakami fund.

Moving to Singapore

MAC Asset Management Inc., an investment fund business led by former trade ministry bureaucrat Yoshiaki Murakami, has notified the government it is ending its business operations in Japan and moving its legal base to Singapore, sources said Saturday.

Murakami has already set up a new investment firm in Singapore under the same name, MAC Asset Management Pte.

Ending Japanese operations will release Murakami’s investment fund from obligations under the law governing investment advisory firms based here.

The obligations include submitting an annual business report.