AustCham Shanghai was delighted to have the Hon Scott Morrison MP in Shanghai to launch the Australian Financial Services Business in China White Paper in February 2016.
Danny Armstrong, Chairman of the Financial Services Industry Committee, shared an overview of China’s progress and reform in the financial service sector.
Highlighting the recent establishments of free trade zones around Shanghai and the positive implications this has for financial service providers and investors, the outlook for the financial services industry is positive but there is much room for improvement and enhancement in the regulatory environment.
We have seen a period of significant change and development in China’s financial markets and in the related regulatory environment since the 2012 paper.
China is continuing on the path of financial sector reform and an opening up of its economy as part of a broader macroeconomic agenda around a shift away from investment and export-led growth to more sustainable domestic consumption-led growth, with an enhanced role for service sectors.
These changes will have a profound impact on the Chinese economy and significant implications for Australia, the Asian region and indeed the world. The reforms are some of the most significant in modern Chinese history:
- Liberalisation of interest rates on the China mainland
- Liberalisation of China’s capital account, including a variety of cross-border investment schemes and linkage of the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges
- Liberalisation of China’s currency in the context of China’s push for its currency to play a more significant role in global investment and trade flows.
With the continued investment in the China market and desire to participate in a well regulated, transparent, open and efficient financial services sector, the pace and scale of recent changes have been quite extraordinary. There have been many new market entrants with significant technical and digital innovation delivering new payment platforms and an expanding array of services.
Innovation and Fintech
In addition to launching the White Paper, Mr Morrison shared a few exciting developments which further highlight the terrific pace of change and pace in the financial sector and economy as a whole.
As part of Australia’s continued push for entrepreneurship and innovation, Mr Morrison announced that the Australian Government will provide $150,000 to Stone & Chalk Shanghai-based FinTech Asia program. This program seeks to attract and develop the best FinTech start-ups and attract high-quality corporate partners, venture capitalists and investors.
Mr Morrison also announced Shanghai is the Turnbull’s government’s choice for 1 of 5 landing pads to help Australian innovators access entrepreneurial talent and global opportunities as part of the Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda. These landing pads will help Australian entrepreneurs take their ideas to market and build high-growth, high-return enterprises.