GUANGZHOU, China, Nov. 26, 2018 /Xinhua-AsiaNet/– The 15th Annual Global Conference of International Finance Forum (IFF) was held in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou, from November 24 to 25. As a platform for China to contribute to the reform of the global financial system and international cooperation, the event drew more than 200 leaders of finance and economics across the world. Open dialogues on the fundamentals of finance, were carried out to help sustain a global economic and financial system.
Where in a new era of globalization are we heading? The world is facing the backlash against trade liberalization and multiplying trade disputes and financial risks. Given that, the financial community is discussing ways toward a stronger global economy and men of vision focus on China, which thrives due to its reform and opening-up policy. As one of the largest and most financially-dynamic and international economies in China, Guangzhou inspires the world with the long-time experience in development.
In a new era of globalization, finance is playing a more prominent role. “Cooperation in finance will help us unlock greater potential for development as global financial markets are interconnected,” said Shaukat Aziz, former Pakistani Prime Minister, at the event. International financial cooperation is an integral part of shaping a community with a shared future for mankind, as shown in the keynote report unveiled by IFF at the conference. “Financial Cooperation Along the Maritime Silk Road: Jointly Building the Greater Bay Area into an International Financial Hub” and other topics focused on the specifics and offered a glimpse of how China works with the world to promote financial cooperation for a stronger global economy. As a new Belt and Road center for international innovative financial services, Guangzhou’s Nansha District is surely a highlight.
“The conference centers on the future of economic globalization, international trading system and mechanism, innovation and the increasing globalization, and reform and opening-up. On that basis, participants are exchanging views and brainstorming, trying to find solutions to the challenges facing us,” said Zhou Xiaochuan, IFF’s president and former governor of the People’s Bank of China. China’s commitments to promote the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) it proposed and globalization are widely recognized. Chinese wisdom became a much-debated topic at the conference and in tune of international consensus.
These Chinese solutions are a result of its successful practices. By implementing the BRI and constructing the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, Guangzhou, IFF’s permanent venue, has gained more opportunities for growth. James J. Shea, senior vice president of United Bank of Switzerland said, “China continues to improve its business environment and open up its financial market, and the Greater Bay Area, in which Guangzhou is situated, has a promising prospect.”
Fundamentally, financial connectivity is a driving force powering economy. “As finance is a new driver for global economic growth, it is hoped that international financial cooperation will lead to shared development,” said Zhou. With China’s modern finance originating here, Guangzhou is one of the most vibrant Chinese cities, economically and financially. It presents the world with a fine example where economy and finance can reinforce each other.
Guangzhou ranks 19th in the twenty-fourth report on Global Financial Center Index (GFCI 24), which attributes to its commitments to emerge as an international exchange center and a pilot free trade area (or port). Beyond that, it has actively promoted cooperation with the Belt and Road countries, advanced the building of the Greater Bay Area and pressed ahead with the financial reform and opening-up so as to become more international. Steven M. Levitt, founder of Park Sutton Advisors believes that the constructing Greater Bay Area will inject fresh impetus for Guangzhou to shape an international financial center.
As the world is seeing the emergence of new economies, the solutions China adopts to respond to an evolving globalization is for quality development and transformation. Given that, international finance particularly needs to be innovative. “Nansha, as the window demonstrating to the outside world its opening-up in finance, will deepen its financial cooperation with Hong Kong and Macao and enhance the ability serve the real economy. Companies here are able to go through formalities for business registration and tax invoice within a day,” said Cai Chaolin, secretary of Nansha’s party committee. Such an enabling environment, which can take on that of any other country on the planet, will accelerate the growth of the financial sector in Nansha and even Guangzhou.
As a matter of fact, the conference attendees are on a significant mission to spot new economic drivers amid a slowing global economy. Such themed sessions as “Created by China and Made in China: Innovative Attitudes and Environment” and “New Capital Leading New Era” triggered hot debates.
In recent years, Guangzhou has applied financial innovation to the real economy and combined new technology with finance in ways to build a sound financial ecosystem that is safe, streamlined and efficient, Rajesh Singh, general manager of the Model Development and Risk Management Department, Bank of America once said. These efforts, he added, would be a great opportunity to revolutionize the cutting-edge financial technology.
To demonstrate its resolve in the financial innovation, Guangzhou has, in recent years, deepened financial reforms, as in Nansha New Area (15 policies approved) and Nansha Free Trade Area and the green finance, making it the city with the largest number of pilot financial reform programs in China. And Nansha, with over 6,000 financial firms there, has gained more resources for innovation. Pilot programs like the green bond, China’s first cross-border leasing assets transactions in U.S. dollars, have been listed among the top 10 practices in free trade zones. Data shows that the adding value of Guangzhou’s financial sector has grown by 106% over the past five years, overtaking any other Chinese city. All these striking figures might be an inspiration for the world.
At the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up, China is committed to opening wider and enhancing international cooperation. At a parallel session themed “Jointly creating the future of the Greater Bay Area — the prospect of financial cooperation between Nansha and Hong Kong & Macao”, experts attending the meeting generally believed that Nansha, with a prime location for financial cooperation between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao, was a frontier for the province to connect with Hong Kong and Macao to go global and a window to attract international resources.
In the face of the new development of globalization, Nansha as an epitome of China has built channels and platforms for drawing talents, capital and enterprises, to enhance the potential of fin-tech development through international cooperation. It is a worldwide consensus to build a community with a shared future for mankind that draws collective wisdom and delivers benefits to all, as demonstrated by the dialogues and exchanges at the IFF.
Source: International Finance Forum