Exchange aims to be No. 1

THE Shanghai Stock Exchange is predicted to be one of the leading stock exchanges in Asia by 2005 and the hub of the nation’s bank card industry. This ambitious assertion is based on the city government’s latest development blueprint on its financial sector. 

“To achieve the breakthroughs (in the financial sector), we should accelerate our steps and make concerted efforts,” said vice-mayor Jiang Yiren.  

His remarks were made earlier this week as plans for the development of the city’s finance industry were unveiled. 

He said the financial sector ought to play a “key role” in the city’s growth as it moves towards building itself into a world-class economic centre.  

Shanghai’s financial sector aims to account for 20% of the city’s gross domestic product by 2005, according to an earlier report by the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank.  

Official statistics showed, however, that Shanghai’s financial sector accounted for about 10% of the city’s GDP last year, a slight drop from 12.5% in 2001. But this is set against the dramatic increase in other areas, in particular the real estate business in Shanghai. 

Ji Xiaohui, director of the Shanghai Financial Works Commission, promised at the briefing that the city government would seek to open its financial sector wider to overseas business, in line with the country’s commitment to the World Trade Organisation. 

And service innovations by domestic and overseas financial institutions would also be further encouraged, he said.  

A recent report by the Development Research Centre under the state council also suggested that Shanghai needed to accelerate the development of its service sector and focus on encouraging financial institutions and multinationals to locate their regional headquarters in the city in the coming years. 

Shanghai would have the capability to build itself into an international financial, trade, logistics, shipping, exhibition and cultural centre within 10 to 20 years, said the report. – People's Daily  

  • Another perspective from The China Daily, a partner of Asia News Network. 

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