Following one of the guiding principles of Asian investment banking head, Malcolm Brown, ING is to turn an industry expert into an investment banker rather than the other way round.

Australian Clive Turton joined ING this week to head the bank's utilities group, taking over from Alexander Alting, who re-located to London at the end of last year to head the European utilities group. Turton comes from Mirant, where he has spent three years based in Hong Kong overseeing the US operator's divestment of its Asian assets.

These included the $300 million sale of a 33% stake in the Shajiao C power plant in Guangdong province to China Resources at the end of 2002 and sale this month of a greenfield site in Korea to Meiya Power.

Prior to Mirant, Turton was a Paris based lawyer for Gide Loyrette Nouel and before that for Clayton Utz in Australia.

ING currently has a five strong utilities team and is forecasting a strong year for the sector as the Chinese government reforms the Mainland power industry.