CBBC Members met with Madam ZONG Ming, Vice Mayor of Shanghai Municipal Government and senior representatives from related departments of Shanghai government, on 28 July 2021 for our latest policy dialogue. The meeting provided an opportunity for CBBC Members to put forward a range of questions and suggestions related to the Shanghai's business environment and future development plans.
The China-Britain Business Council (CBBC) co-hosted the dialogue in partnership with Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce. Seven CBBC Members were present at the dialogue together with six corresponding departments and districts of Shanghai Municipal Government.
Mr GU Jun, Chairman of Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce gave a brief overview of foreign direct investment in Shanghai noting that 'Shanghai witnessed strong growth of FDI in the first half of 2021. High-tech and business services sectors have become the main driver of FDI growth accounting for 65% of the total FDI in Shanghai. The number of regional headquarters of MNCs and foreign invested R&D centres in Shanghai reached 802 and 493 respectively. The UK is a key source of FDI for Shanghai with 1300 British companies investing USD 3.7 billion in the city.'
Tom Simpson, Managing Director, China Operations & China Chief Representative, CBBC, opened by noting that 'Shanghai is a key focal point for British business in the Yangtze River Delta region as well as across China with many companies basing their national headquarters here in addition to significant volumes of capital investment.'
He went on to say that 'British business in Shanghai as well as China covers a diverse range of activity, which is reflected by the companies joining the dialogue today. A key reason for diversity and scale of investment is the reception that British businesses receive when they invest here and events such as this dialogue all play an important role in achieving this.'
During the dialogue, senior representatives from member companies - GSK, bp, Swire Properties, Reckitt & Manon, Diageo, Smith + Nephew and RELX - had the opportunity to introduce their business and put forward their questions and suggestions. Responses to each question were provided by representatives from the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce, Shanghai Science and Technology Commission, Shanghai Securities Regulatory Commission, Shanghai Municipal Administration for Market Regulation, Pudong New District and Jing'an District.
The dialogue covered an extensive range of topics, with particular focus given to policy on introduction of global advanced bio science technology, obtaining futures trading licenses, policy on cross-border trade, tax policy for high level talents and headquarters in Pudong, the night time economy, policy on third-party think tanks as well as recommendations on better interpreting local investment policies and setting up pilot projects.
In her closing remarks, Vice Mayor ZONG Ming shared Shanghai's efforts in controlling the pandemic to ensure business can operate smoothly. She noted 'Shanghai will provide development opportunity for foreign companies including British companies. British business contributes significantly to Shanghai's development. Shanghai will strive to further improve its business environment and ensure predictability with local policy.' The Vice Mayor also urged the relevant departments present to follow up with companies directly on the questions and suggestions raised during the dialogue.
She went on to say that 'British business in Shanghai as well as China covers a diverse range of activity, which is reflected by the companies joining the dialogue today. A key reason for the diversity and scale of investment is the reception that British businesses receive when they invest here and events such as this dialogue all play an important role in achieving this.'
The dialogue was moderated by Mr GU Honghui, Deputy Secretary General of Shanghai Municipal Government.