Message to Matthews Asia Science and Technology Fund Shareholders
April 30, 2010
We would like to inform you that effective April 30, 2010, the Matthews Asian Technology Fund (MATFX) has been renamed the Matthews Asia Science and Technology Fund to better reflect its investment strategy. The Fund’s objective and ticker remain unchanged.
As the Fund has always considered technology-related companies to include health sciences- related companies (biotechnology, medical device and pharmaceutical firms, and companies involved in the distribution and servicing of these products), we feel the addition of the word “science” to the Fund name better reflects our investment approach as well as the expanding role of these sectors in Asian economies.
Asia is already the world’s largest health care market in terms of number of patients. Yet Asia spends among the least per capita on health care globally. In 2009, U.S. health care spending per capita was approximately US$7,500. By comparison, per capita spending in Asia (excluding Japan) was about US$550. Average per capita health care spending in Japan was US$3,170 while China’s average was only US$147, and spending in India was a mere US$51 per person.
We believe that as income levels rise in Asia, health care expenditure per capita should grow accordingly, and that the majority of this new spending will be related to technology such as medical devices. We also expect demand for more affordable drugs and medical supplies to grow as the Asian market expands.
We are pleased to report that as of March 31, 2010, the Fund is the top-ranked fund out of 19 funds since inception (12/27/99), based on total return, in the Lipper Global Science and Technology category.
If you have any questions regarding the Fund’s name change please contact us at 800-789-ASIA (2742). Thank you for your continued investment in the Matthews Asia Funds. We appreciate the opportunity to serve you.
Robert J. Horrocks, PhD
Chief Investment Officer
J. Michael Oh