Jump to content

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

Guest

Members
  • Content count

    20
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

0 Neutral

About Guest

  • Rank
    Member
  1. Like a whisper it started, as most things do in this city of rumors and beautiful women, "Did you hear? They're closing Huating Lu." Impossible, Huating Road, a.k.a. The Black Market, is a Shanghainese institution for Chinese and foreigners alike. Sometimes referred to as a cultural landmark, it is Shanghai in all it's glory; after all, it must do pretty good business. Huating Road, a narrow lane which goes for about two blocks off Huahai at the Changshu Lu subway stop, has been supplying anyone who dares to brave its stalls with flashy fake goods for well on 20 years. Emerging with the rest of Shanghai under the slogan of economic reform, it has become a staple of many expert shoppers. For the fashion conscious Shanghainese, it is an opportunity to dress in Gucci, Prada and Fendi. For the occasional tourist, it is a place to stock up on North Face jackets. It's where you go for J. Crew and Hello Kitty, cool shoes, hip party clothes and T-shirts emblazoned with things like "Strange that South country." It's where foreigners learn to bargain like locals and come away looking like them too. On a good day, Huating Road is fun. It's colorful and loud. You can get good deals and feel Chinese. On bad days, it's hot and crowded and you get cheated. In effect, it sums up life in China. One of the motherland's beautiful idiosyncrasies, Huating is a legal black market, regulated by the government and being relocated, rather than shut down. It is a playful slap in the face to all the bad-boy multinationals, with their products selling for a tenth (or less) of retail. When the ugly rumors started this summer, no one believed it could be true. The proverbial "they" said there were too many people and too much noise, or maybe the city just decided it would simply make more money if the vendors moved to a location on Huaihai Lu between Shanxi Lu and Xiangyang Lu, where rent would be higher. In any case, a move was foreseeable. But several months passed and on a Sunday in early September, business was still bustling. According to most vendors, the move must be completed by October 31st. But some saw this date as flexible. They seemed hopeful that it could be pushed back indefinitely. When I told a woman selling dinner sets, I would be back before they moved, she told me not to worry. They would be there for a while yet. But another was using the move as a bargaining technique. "We have to move," she shouted, "Come get cheap watches!" Her family had sold clothes in the market for years, she explained, and now they had to milk this last bit of time for all it's worth. With the date set in two months, the sale seemed a little premature but whatever sells does the trick and her stall was full. When I asked if they had to move, the vendors answered invariably with a sigh. Mei banfa, most of them shrugged. A young woman selling nonsensical Japanese shirts explained, "Our rent will go up, which will make the prices go up. When the prices go up, there will be fewer customers." People were a little less skeptical after they found out I was a reporter. A woman making beaded bracelets noted they would have a little more space, but it seemed small recompense. No one cared that they would benefit from modern amenities such as air-conditioning, and that's saying a lot considering the current heat. A man selling Tibetan jewelry commented, "I'm dying of heat, but business is good." A little discomfort apparently can be handled, if it means more gold in the bank. A regular Huating shopper, Helen Hu, likes the market for its "atmosphere of casualness." She agrees that it's "another scene in Shanghai with wide choices and lots of people around you." Not only the vendors are disappointed with the move, but also the market's many fans. Like one of my friends, who claims she goes three times a week. The final word came from a woman selling bath scrubbies. With a sweep of her hand and a Shanghainese sigh, she said, "Look at all this, of course we don't want to move." Following her gaze, I saw all the Chinese yuan, the Japanese yen, the American dollars and the Deutsche marks milling through the alley. In Shanghai, what more could you ask for?
  2. We are here to make sure your internship in Shanghai runs smoothly allowing you to gain the most from you Internship experience and future career. There are some amazing opportunities for individuals wanting to work and Study in Shanghai, We offer a guaranteed tailor-made internship programs in a extensive selection of industries. Our team of staff and strategic partners have many years of experience in international travel, business and working abroad. Collectively lived on 5 continents and traveled to over 70 countries, Our team truly has been ‘around the world and back again’. Shanghai is one of fastest growing cities in the world, an international hub for business and commerce. Home to many Multinational banks, media, local and global politics, international business, Shanghai is the ultimate destination for those seeking enriching opportunities an international work experiences. The road to success is full of trials. If you want a bright future, then a good education is what you need. Shanghai Interns is one institution that is dedicated in helping you fulfil your dreams. Shanghai Interns is located in the heart of China, the city of Shanghai. Shanghai is the largest city in all of china and is populated by at least 20 million people. Shanghai Interns offers you a chance to be in the center of finance and trade in all of mainland China. Opportunities are opening up all over china and to be in the forefront, you need a good company to back you up. By joining Shanghai Interns, you are taking your first step into a financially secure future. Shanghai Interns focuses on your dreams and your future. Internship plays a big part in ones education. Shanghai Interns bridges the gap between the school and the real world. In school you are taught the basics. In Shanghai Interns, you are taught on how to work in real life situations in real life offices. You will be immersed in an environment that is filled with knowledge, and no school can match this kind of experience. Having a job is a big responsibility. You can either perform well of fail. With shanghai Interns, internship becomes easy. The process of applying is as easy as 123. Not like other companies where you have to process your papers for long time, Shanghai Interns wants you to start internship early. By shortening the process of application, Shanghai Interns gives you the most out of the money that you pay. The earlier you start your internship, the better for you. Learning is important and it cannot be delayed. Having fun and learning is easy. Join Shanghai Interns and see that you will learn and have fun at the same time. Very few people are given this kind of opportunity in their lives. To be able to go to the center of finance is one opportunity that you shouldn’t miss. You never know if this opportunity will come again. Join now and experience how a prestigious company takes care of your education. Make your decision now! If you are serious about learning what makes successful men and women, sign up with Shanghai Interns. In everything in life, there is a right time. Now is the time for you to learn the ways of the real world. Join Shanghai Interns and feel secure about your future. With Shanghai interns you get more than just a professional internship placement. Throughout your journey, we offer premium level support and service you’ll need to feel prepared living and working abroad. Our package includes: Accommodations in comfortable group housing located in close proximity to public transportation. Student health and accident insurance. Assistance with visa application documents and process. Pre-departure and in-country orientations. Airport Meet & Greet. Global Skills Training Program. Ongoing coaching and supervision. Mandarin Lessons. Weekend excursions. 24 hour emergency service. Additional items not covered include: International airfare & daily commute. Optional activities. Personal expenses. Meals.
  3. In a city famed for high-living, glamour and indulgence, it's reassuring to find a top-quality restaurant focused foremost on its honest, straightforward cooking and great wines rather than the superfluous pretensions that can sometimes be associated with haute cuisine. Although Mesa offers the same exceptionally high standard of food as Shanghai's most elite dining experiences (Australian chef Steve Baker made his name at T8 restaurant), the menu has a simple and down-to-earth approach that makes it a regular favourite with both expats and visitors, as well as with locals. Formerly an electronics factory, Mesa retains a striking industrial feel with an unusual, eye-catching glass frontage and recycled metal and timber interior. A glassed-in kitchen, stark spiral staircase and split-levels break up the large open space while lush red velvet upholstery glows richly as natural light floods across the restaurant. Upstairs a stunning, south facing terrace looks out onto the greenery and slower¬paced living of the former French Concession area where you can relax, soak up the sun and observe the neighbouring activity around the fruit sellers and local shops below. At the weekend, Mesa offers undoubtedly one of Shanghai's best home¬style brunches with fresh breads and pastries, full fry-ups, eggs benedict, gourmet salads and sandwiches. The friendly service and casual atmosphere make it a popular venue to enjoy a slow morning, reading the papers and watching the city's day progress outside. If you're after a refreshing, al fresco lunch or warming, winter dinner, there's a tasty variety on the menu including fresh, crisp salads, sandwich fillings, locally produced organic vegetables and a variety of seafood and meats. Signature dishes include Carpaccio of Beef with Goat Cheese Gratin, Baked Salmon with Tea Soba Noodles and Harissa Lamb Pie. Adjoining the restaurant is Manifesto, a stylish, intimate bar lit by candles and low hanging lanterns. Inviting daybeds align one side creating a luxurious and private hideaway while the dominant three-sided bar inspires a more social setting. The warm and informal atmosphere is ideal for sampling the innovative, delicious cocktails and tasty Western appetizers-including the Baby Burger with Dill, Pickle, Cheddar, Tomato and Mustard and Grilled Chorizo with Sherry-created by Mesa's executive chef Steve Baker. Ideal for an early evening drink and a serene location to linger late into the night Manifesto is the perfect companion to the ever-popular Mesa next door.
  4. A welcoming and tranquil refuge located off Ruijin Road, a street famed in the French Colonial days as 'avenue joffre', Face couldn't be further from its counterparts. Set in the beautiful gardens of the Ruijin Guest House, surrounded by extensive lawns and trees, sits the beautifully restored villa Can Ying Lou. Built in Shanghai's heady prewar days for a Japanese trader, the building combines the warmth of an old country home with the opulence and wealth of its past. Either a summer playground or a winter retreat, Face has the rare ability to indulge every mood. As the sun sets in Shanghai's heat, guests can re-live those colonial days with a gin and tonic (a refreshing green tea, a tropical Summer Breeze or even a chocolate mint martini) on the large terrace in front of the house and enjoy the view across the lawn. If the sun is too much then the cool veranda, draped with floating white curtains and bright Asian fabrics provides a more secluded and shaded spot. As the colder weather arrives, head inside and soak up the vibrant decor, relax on the lustrous red sofas or even recline on the luxurious opium bed. The ambience continues inside with a choice of two superb restaurants. Hazara, named after a tribe and region in Afghanistan, offers a tasty selection of Northern Indian cuisine combining healthy rustic with stylishly refined cooking. Its signature dish, Raan e Huzara (Tandoor Shredded Leg of Lamb) is one of many dishes on the menu to come highly recommended across Shanghai. Brimming with exotic antiques and furniture, the restaurant's sensual atmosphere creates a unique dining experience making it a deservedly popular venue for residents and visitors alike. Equally steeped in character, is Lan Na Thai. Its name 'many rice fields' is an area in northern Thailand and both the food and serene surroundings reflect this. Reputed to be one of the few authentic Thai restaurants in Shanghai, the menu-complete with chef's recommendations-offers all the favorites along with some enticing alternatives. The Green Curry (Gaeng Kiew Wan) and Thai Omelette (Kai Yat Sai) are particularly good. Looking out onto Face's terrace below and the beautiful lawns of Ruijin make Lan Na Thai a perfect setting for both a relaxing lunch and an intimate dinner. After your meal, return to Face Bar to make the most of the extensive drinks menu. Absorb the peaceful surroundings or even play pool (the pool table blends perfectly into this serene setting. It's made, of course, out of red felt and dark wood to match the rest of the furnishings) before stepping back out onto the bustling streets of Shanghai.
  5. Shanghai is a great city for married couples. Dinner dates together can be fun and cheap and there is always the possibility of an inexpensive massage together to rub away the daily stresses. With all the household help available, it’s easy to avoid the mundane disputes that arise elsewhere over who left whose dirty dishes on the counter and who always gets stuck doing the laundry. An ayi, who is practically part of the family, makes it easy to slip away from the kids for quality couple-time. There may even be the luxury of a car and driver to schlep the kids around town. Your time together in Shanghai may be the time of your life. But it may not be all wine and roses, and like marital partners everywhere, spouses in Shanghai may experience any or all of the sticking points that couples commonly wrestle with such as money issues, sex and intimacy problems, differing views about parenting, and frustrated expectations arising from cultural differences. Shanghai is a great city for married couples. Dinner dates together can be fun and cheap and there is always the possibility of an inexpensive massage together to rub away the daily stresses. With all the household help available, it’s easy to avoid the mundane disputes that arise elsewhere over who left whose dirty dishes on the counter and who always gets stuck doing the laundry. An ayi, who is practically part of the family, makes it easy to slip away from the kids for quality couple-time. There may even be the luxury of a car and driver to schlep the kids around town. Your time together in Shanghai may be the time of your life. But it may not be all wine and roses, and like marital partners everywhere, spouses in Shanghai may experience any or all of the sticking points that couples commonly wrestle with such as money issues, sex and intimacy problems, differing views about parenting, and frustrated expectations arising from cultural differences. Getting married in China. If you are a foreigner considering getting married in China, you will need to register your marriage in accordance with the laws of China. Generally speaking, at least one member of the couple must be a resident of China and at least age 22 for men and 20 for women. Chinese citizens who are diplomats or hold other significant government positions are not free to marry foreigners. The US Consulate also reports that Chinese students who marry foreigners should expect to be expelled from school as soon as they do so. To find out how to register their marriage, the couple should contact the Shanghai Marriage Registration Office and, in the case of the foreigner, the home country consulate for necessary documentation. Western-style pre-marital counseling is also available in Shanghai from a number of mental-health practitioners. (See Resources, below, for specifics.) Moving your marriage to Shanghai Experts say that moving, along with death and divorce, is considered to be one of life’s most significant stresses, so it’s safe to say that moving a marriage internationally to Shanghai will bring to the surface any hidden flaws in the marriage. Robin Pascoe, a veteran expat who has written and lectured extensively on expat family issues, says: “Ask accompanying expatriate spouses anywhere in the world to identify the most overwhelming loss they feel after moving abroad and ‘identity’ will likely be the near-unanimous reply.” In a fairly typical situation, he has an exciting new job, an office, staff who speak his language, and dinners out at glamorous restaurants. She, on the other hand, may be on her own trying to cope with day-to-day home life, unable to communicate well with Chinese helpers, and possibly trying to deal with unhappy children. Maybe his job is more daunting than exciting, and maybe he’s exhausted, too, by much longer hours than he is used to and a lot of travel. Perhaps she has given up a job in her home country and is financially dependent for the first time. They may have left behind aging parents, whose care is a concern. The stage is set for strong feelings of isolation, loss of identity, and guilt. Unless the marriage can cope with these, it’s easy to slide into a communication breakdown accompanied by simmering resentment and a loss of intimacy, which may in turn lead to escape into workaholism or infidelity. And here in Shanghai, where there is still enormous economic inequality between expats and most locals, and lots of opportunity to stray, the reports of male infidelity are legion. Ms Pascoe addresses these move-related issues and gives advice on how to restore balance in her book entitled A Moveable Marriage: Relocate Your Relationship Without Breaking It. A wealth of resources and information pertaining to expat family issues appears on her website, as well. A particularly helpful feature on her site is a discussion forum in which trailing spouses from all over the world share experiences and offer advice on coping with the marital problems that accompany expat life. Those spouses have seen it all. The factors that will help someone to re-gain a sense of identity are specific to each invidual. But there are lots of opportunities in Shanghai, a city where people seem constantly to re-invent themselves. For some, it’s as simple as making friends by joining some of the many international organizations and attending social events or programs to introduce aspects of Chinese culture. Some of these, such as the American Women’s Club, have special small-group get-acquainted programs. Most of these same organizations do significant charity work in China and it’s easy to get involved in the community through them. Many people find that learning Chinese bolsters their independence; the available programs range from immersion at local universities to more moderately-paced but excellent courses at language institutes, to taking a class at the Community Center Shanghai, to hiring a private tutor. Professionals may find networking opportunities through such organizations as the Expatriate Professional Women’s Society or the Foreign Correspondents’ Club, whose members include journalists and non-journalists alike. When self-help help isn’t enough. If just getting settled and getting life up and running isn’t sufficient, or if a couple is troubled by stubborn issues, there are other resources. Websites such as www.marriagebuilders.com offer the opportunity to go online and get help anywhere in the world. Marital counseling is also widely available in Shanghai at present through the Community Center, health-care providers such as Shanghai Family United Hospital and Parkway Health, as well as several private practitioners. When marriage ends. Ultimately, of course, some marriages fail here. Divorce and child custody issues may be quite complicated as a result of the international aspect of the marriage. Jeremy Morley, a British lawyer who specializes in international divorce and works in New York, advises spouses to hope for the best but plan for the possible worst. He further advises that “First steps are critical. The important early decisions include whether to stay overseas or return home, whether to give up the overseas home, or whether to take the children out of school and bring them back to… the home country. A [spouse] should never make these decisions without being fully informed of their possible repercussions on her legal situation.” To that end, he urges consulting with local attorneys as well as attorneys in the home country. Claudia Zhao, a Chinese attorney specializing in family law, advises that “If a foreigner marries a Chinese in Shanghai, their divorce as well as their jointly owned properties in China gained during the marriage can be settled here. The same is true for two foreigners who married in Shanghai; however, usually the overseas property will not be divided by the court in China unless they can reach agreement on property division. If two foreigners married in any other country, and they can reach agreement on divorce, the divorce can also be settled here.” For referrals to local attorneys, or help with local police in emergencies, for example if there is domestic abuse, expats should contact the consulate of their home country. Resources Books and Websites: Bryson, Debra R. and Hoge, Charise M., A Portable Identity: A Woman’s Guide to Maintaining A Sense of Self While Moving Overseas www. international-divorce.com. This site is maintained by Jeremy Morley, a British lawyer working in New York. See especially his Top Ten Tips for Expats, www.international-divorce.com/family_law_tips_for_expats.htm and the Marriage Law of the People’s Republic of China, which governs both marriage and divorce, at www.international-divorce.com/d-china.htm. For online marital counseling, see www.marriagebuilders.com. Pascoe, Robin, A Moveable Marriage: Relocate Your Relationship Without Breaking It, published by Expat Press. Her website, www.expatexpert.com, has a wealth of useful information and links. See especially groups.yahoo.com/group/moveablemarriages for an online discussion forum on the issues concerning expat marriage. The US Consulate website summarizes the requirements for marriage between a Chinese national and a U.S. citizen at shanghai.usembassy-china.org.cn/marriage_in_china.html and provides a list of attorneys, including family law experts (only one of whom currently practices family law, see below) at shanghai.usembassy-china.org.cn/law_firms.html.
  6. Americas National Association of Realtors recently reported that investors from China are the most likely overseas buyers for US homes valued at $1 million and more. For instance, Joyce Rey, executive director of US agents Coldwell Banker Previews International, says US upmarket homes are "growing in prominence as the destination of choice" for Chinese real estate investment, following close on the heels of other popular markets such as Singapore, London, and Vancouver. "Low interest rates and good price values after the financial crisis are offering Chinese investors with an attractive return, Rey says. Colliers International is seeing the same phenomenon in Canada's Vancouver-West and Richmond region. "Due to China's continuous tightening real estate policies, we are expecting many more mainland investors to buy properties overseas in the future. The growth potential for property prices in Vancouver is expected to hit 20% to 40% in the following 10 to 30 years. Similarly, figures from Savills show that buyers from Southeast Asia - mainly from Mainland China and Hong Kong now account for 30% of all new development sales in London, making Chinese the most active in the overseas buyers in the UK's capital. According to Randall Hall, CEO of Savills China, the "recent tightening of government policy towards Chinese domestic property investments has led to an increased appetite for overseas real estate purchases. And the strengthening of the yuan against major currencies in the past two years has also meant Chinese buyers could acquire foreign real estate assets at a bargain." Australia is popular too with Chinese overseas property buyers splashing out approximately Aus $71.5 million during the 2009/10 financial year, a rise of 72% on the previous 12 months of Chinese inward investment. According to Colliers International "Chinese buyers spent Aus $30.8 million across 61 transactions in Brisbane last year, followed closely by Aus $29.3 million across 63 transactions on the Gold Coast. Colliers international Gold Coast research manager Lynda Campbell, who has been monitoring the transactions annually since 1990/91, says this is "the largest spend recorded by China over the 20 years Colliers had been researching" Brinton Keath, Colliers International Gold Coast director of project marketing, also believes that Asian-based buyers are attracted by the affordability of tertiary education on offer. "Parents are buying apartments that their student children can live in whilst studying at an Australian University. And, closer to home, Chinese buyers in the Singapore property market have grown significantly in number from last year, according to agents DTZ. "In the second half of last year, mainland Chinese buyers represented a record breaking 20% of non-Singaporean buyers in the market," says DTZ. This puts them on par with the Indonesians as the second largest group of non-singaporean buyers in the city after the Malaysians, who top the polls with 21%.
  7. Xu Kuangdi, mayor of Shanghai Municipality, said that Shanghai would focus its efforts on Tax Incentives when opening up to the outside world. Firstly it will improve the investment policy, with the focus on attracting funds from multi-nationals under the precondition that it would treat foreign businesses equally without discrimination, in order to build Shanghai not only into an R&D centre, management centre and operation centre in the Yangtze River Delta, but also within the whole of China and Asia-Pacific region as well. Secondly, link the opening up closely with industrial structure improvement. After WTO membership, Shanghai can now concentrate on construction of an IC and micro-electronic industry base, the Shanghai Chemical Industry Zone, the Shanghai International Auto Town and the BaoSteel Quality Steel Production Base, for the purpose of raising the industry's technological level. Thirdly, expand the opening of the service industry, especially the financial sector according to the commitments made by the Chinese Government. It will make efforts in opening up new sectors including funds, securities, foreign exchange, insurance and gold. It will also develop modern logistics, this new type of industry attracting world famous logistics companies entering Shanghai. Other new sectors that need to become less closed are e-commerce, as well as telecommunications, tourism, intermediary sectors, and transportation. Fourthly, it will step up reform of the investment and financing system to attract foreign funds with Tax Incentives and into the construction of urban infrastructure facilities and other projects. Shanghai will introduce funds into construction of (a) deep-water port(s), small towns in the suburbs, and facilities of rail transportation, city water supply and drainage, whilst allowing and encouraging foreign capital to take part in strategic restructuring of the public economy. At the same time, it will seek multi-form methods with the use of foreign funds in the fields of scientific research and education.
  8. Essential Finance is your offshore investment partner – available online, 24/7, from anywhere in the world. We provide a range of professional services, best-in-class products and tailored solutions for individuals and businesses. We are independently owned by the Essential Group. The Group is managed by seasoned financial professionals from leading institutions who foresaw the need for a new type of service: independent, rigorously selective, transparent - and comprehensive. We combine this with new technologies that allow our clients to be as hands-on with their finances as they wish. Of course, clients may also delegate management to us. Flexibility is central to the Essential service. Managed by expats for expats, we have thousands of clients and members located throughout Asia Pacific and the rest of the world. Many are investment and banking professionals attracted by our unique online offerings, and the skilled guidance and support provided by our multinational teams. The Essential Group has registered offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Bangkok, Mauritius and Singapore Our corporate growth is driven by strong performance. The offshore investment portal was launched in 2004, immediately establishing itself as one of the world’s leading online platforms for offshore investing.
  9. The esteemed and preferential treatment recently afforded to David Li Kwok-po, president and CEO of Hong Kong’s Bank of East Asia – significantly the first overseas bank that opened shop in the west of China – can be seen as reflecting the breaking of a new banking dawn within the Middle Kingdom. With the onset of entry into the World Trade Organisation (WTO) once more casting its omnipresent shadow, overseas-funded banks are set to be handed unique opportunities within China’s mainland. The actual process of establishing branches in the mainland by overseas-funded banks started about 10 years ago and experienced an upsurge in the mid-1990s amid a wide-spread shortage of funds caused by the “hunger for investments,” typical of countries with a planned economy. As the country’s reforms repeatedly reached new heights, businessmen from overseas-funded banks flocked to China to tackle the big indirect investment market brought by the financial industry, overwhelming the officials receiving them. By the end of June 2001, China had 191 overseas-funded banks with assets totaling US$40bn, an increase of US$5bn from the previous year. In recent months, overseas-funded banks, especially those headquartered in Hong Kong, have expressed strong interest in the mainland market. The current accelerated trend of opening bank branches has run in tandem with China’s journey towards joining the WTO. For example, Standard Chartered Bank, which has already opened seven branches on the mainland, is considering upgrading six of its representative offices to branches. The Hang Seng Bank, for its part, has announced a 2.2% increase in its lending business value on the mainland in the first half of the year to US$10.5bn over that of last year, accounting for 4.7% of its total lending value. It has also filed applications to upgrade its representative offices in Shanghai and Nanjing to branches, besides expressing a willingness to buy stakes in mainland banks. Aligned to this, HSBC of Hong Kong plans to relocate around 1,000 of its logistics employees to the mainland in the next three years. As its general manager, Ke Qinghui, stated, “HSBC plans to found the second logistics centre on mainland when the first one is set up in Guangzhou. HSBC compounded this intention by announcing in March plans to move its central processing and credit card centres to Guangzhou. Structurally, there are 3 policy-related banks, 4 stated-owned commercial banks, 10 joint stock banks and over 90 local banks currently within China. Despite the proliferation and increasingly diverse nature of China’s banks the industry has not fared well in terms of business profits. Of the 10 joint stock banks, only the Bank of Communications, Huaxia Bank, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and Minsheng Banking Corporation posted growths in 1999; all others saw negative growth in the year, and were also dogged by mounting bad debts. To prevent a spreading of debts, China has tactically introduced overseas-funded banks to boost the strength of the banking sector and to minimize financial risks. Along similarly deflated lines, overseas-funded banks have not performed as well as expected in their business activities – around 200 financial institutions have seen their profits drop – mainly owing to various policy-related restrictions. The fundamental headache for overseas-funded banks is in fact a weaker reserve of capital in comparison with their Chinese-funded counterparts. Logically, quite a few have therefore indicated their willingness to raise funds through depository receipts on the mainland stock market. The Bank of East Asia (BEA) is one of the most enthusiastic among the overseas-funded banks to expand its market reach on the mainland but the lack of capital there has prevented it from expanding as rapidly as it wishes. The BEA hopes that it can become a listed company through issuing A-stock or depository receipts. Given that redefining the BEA’s business operations on the mainland into a listed company goes against their overall operation, so the Bank of East Asia is inclined to go public in the form of depository receipts, an intention outlined by Chen Qichang, the bank’s managing director and deputy executive president. Theoretically, separating its business operations on the mainland would face few difficulties, but to fuse these business operations into a company registered on the mainland would mean that the company would become a subsidiary of the Bank of East Asia. As the company’s ranking could be lower than that of the BEA, it would affect the capital costs of its mainland branches. Another hurdle for overseas-funded banks to negotiate is the strict requirements imposed by the Chinese central bank on the establishment of branches. Effectively, only those overseas-funded banks with assets of US$20bn or more can open branches on China’s mainland; one bank can open only one branch each year and RMB loans extended by branches of overseas-funded banks cannot exceed 50% of their total loans. Although the Chinese government raised the percentage from 35% to 50% in 1999 when it revised its policies on RMB lending business by branches of foreign-funded banks, the restriction continued to prompt many complaints from the banks. The overseas-funded banks hope that there will be a revision in Chinese central bank policies to lower the threshold. They are currently trying to break through the “one branch a year” policy and the 50% restriction on RMB loans. On a practical level this would see the Bank of East Asia, which successfully opened its branch in Xi’an, elevate its representative offices in Beijing and Wuhan to branches within the coming months. In accordance with this it does appear that the Chinese central bank is about to relax its policy restrictions. To adapt to China’s entry into the WTO, the central bank reportedly plans to loosen up the provision that requires overseas-funded banks to have assets of US$20bn or more to open branches on the mainland. In addition, the central bank is setting up an expert group together with the Legal Affairs Department of the State Council to review and revise the financial policies and laws promulgated by the central bank in recent years. There is no doubt that overseas-funded banks have started to feel the relaxation of the restrictive environment on the mainland market. Yu Xueqiang, the BEA’s general manager and head of its China operations, stated that the mainland banks’ retail lending business mainly consists of mortgage loans, but the interest on mainland mortgage loans is about 1.5-2% higher than that of Hong Kong, therefore the BEA is fully confident of defeating mainland competitors. And if overseas-funded banks can engage in all RMB business operations, the Bank of East Asia business volume on the mainland could conceivably exceed even that of Hong Kong within 10 years. Another factor that greatly interests foreign-funded banks is that the Chinese central bank will allow them to buy stakes in the mainland’s joint stock banks and local banks, a step taken to further economically liberalise the banking industry. China’s Bank of Communications’ plan on attracting overseas funds was approved recently by the supervisory authorities, and overseas-funded banks can control as much as 15% of the mainland bank’s worth. This is obviously welcome news for overseas-funded banks that have been dogged by various restrictions on business operations on the mainland. As a matter of fact, a joint stock relationship between mainland and overseas banks has long been a dream of Chinese-funded banks, and the Chinese government has never objected to such an arrangement. Through equity participation, overseas-funded banks can skip many of the restrictions to enter China’s mainland market. In accordance
  10. Increasingly, US multinationals doing business in China are tapping into the talents of Chinese returnees -- émigrés who left the country to pursue educational or employment opportunities in North America or Europe who now want to return home. "Qualified managers are in short supply in China today," explains Raji Antoun, a principal and international human resources expert at William M. Mercer, Inc. "As a result, returnees have begun to play a wider role in the Chinese operations of multinational corporations. Many have considerable professional talents, language skills and multicultural experience, all of which makes them highly desirable as managerial and professional employees." Antoun predicts that opportunities for emigrant Chinese managers and professionals should grow substantially in the years immediately ahead as multinational concerns expand their operations in China. He cautions, however, that some companies may encounter problems integrating returnees into their workforces. "Skilled returnees command comparatively high compensation levels, a fact likely to raise pay equity issues." To get a better perspective on policies and practices involving Chinese returnees, Mercer recently surveyed 12 large US and Canadian multinationals with operations in China -- typically, Beijing, Shanghai and Guagnzhou. Among its findings, the survey showed that: eleven of the 12 companies currently employ, or plan soon to employ, Chinese returnees; the remaining company intends to do so within the next year or so; ten of the surveyed companies provide returnees with short-term incentive bonuses; three, however, offer longer-term, stock-related incentives, but only to returnees in management positions; currently, the surveyed companies employ a total of 36 Chinese returnees among them, of whom more than half have obtained US or Canadian citizenship; the top three perquisites provided to returnees are a company car or car allowance, paid vacation, and home leave. Other perks include provision for emergency evacuation, tax return preparation and dependent education allowance; relocation assistance of some type -- typically payment for shipment of household goods -- is provided by the companies that currently employ, or expect soon to employ, Chinese returnees; the cash compensation (salary plus annual bonus) of returnees who hold general manager positions ranges between $90,000 and $163,000; the average is $121,338 of which $99,400 is base salary and $21,938 is annual bonus. "Possession of a US passport and 'green card' can help determine the returnee's compensation level," says Antoun. He explains that a job candidate who has the ability to legally reside and work outside China is likely to expect -- and bargain for -- pay comparable to Western standards. Such compensation, notes Antoun, is typically many multiples of pay for a local. "Others lacking a US passport and other documentation are likely to be in a weak bargaining position," he says. "They may need to settle for pay that is comparatively low by Western -- although high by local -- standards." Nevertheless, Antoun says that "beyond an immediate compensation gain, the idea of returning to China can have intrinsic appeal to many."
  11. Gladstone Morgan provides a bespoke service to all of its clients, individual and corporate. Relationship brokering, knowing about each client's particular circumstances and aspirations, ensures that each piece of advice given matches the specific needs and objectives of each individual. Our aim is to ensure that all of our clients enjoy security and prosperity whatever the changes in the local or global political and economic environment. We offer investment services with a truly international perspective and our brief is to source the best global solutions for our clients. Our activities are co-ordinated from Hong Kong, the financial hub of Asia. Gladstone Morgan is free to choose global solutions for our clients incorporating the very best in investment expertise with no emphasis on any one fund management group. This gives us complete freedom in our search for the most appropriate solution for you. We value our independence as much as you value your own. Independent financial advice is the essence of our philosophy, with no geographical, political or economic boundaries. Gladstone Morgan, through our personal approach, is committed to providing you with the continuity of service that is so important for the efficient management of your financial affairs. Our interest in our clients is long term. We want to develop a lasting relationship of mutual benefit whereby you can use and recommend us with total confidence.
  12. Austen Morris Associates is an international financial planning and wealth management company. Our international operations were founded in 1994 on the principles of trust, professionalism and partnership. We have built our business by implementing these principles to benefit expatriates around the world. As independent financial consultants, Austen Morris Associates provides unbiased advice and access to the world’s top investment management groups. Our advisors offer a wealth of experience, from offshore investment structures for your long term financial security, portfolio management, and wealth protection, to private equity and venture capital funds, providing the full spectrum of financial advice. Commitment to client confidentiality guarantees security and peace of mind while utilizing tax efficient jurisdictions around the world. What does this mean for you? By focusing on your needs as an individual, we tailor plans to reach your specific financial goals and maximize the benefits of living overseas. Austen Morris Associates is a fully licensed Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprise (WFOE) maintaining full legal recognition in all areas of the world we operate in. To provide a continuous, customised and premier service, Austen Morris Associates realizes the value of innovation. To achieve this we must constantly deliver new technologies and systematically survey clients and employees for ideas to evolve the most fundamental part of our company’s business model: SERVICE. We use the latest technology to deliver the best solution in the most effective and efficient way possible while never losing sight of the human side of client servicing.
  13. The deVere Group is the world’s largest independent financial consultancy group. We work with international investors and expatriates to find financial services products that best suit their medium to long-term requirements for investments, savings and pensions. With in excess of US$8 billion of funds under administration and management, deVere has more than sixty thousand clients in over a hundred countries. Our independence and ability to offer financial products that are tailor-made to fit an individual’s needs, are behind our success. As a result we now have offices in over fifty countries. You can find us in Abu Dhabi, Tokyo, Geneva, Hong Kong, Johannesburg, Dubai, London, Mexico, Shanghai, Brussels, Zurich, and Moscow amongst others.
  14. Landlord and Tenants living in older Shanghai apartments in compounds such as the Jing'an Villas - a development popular with expatriates in the city are set for a increase in property management fees. The local shanghai housing authority has announced the increase in property management fees for maintenance services at over 5000 housing compounds built before the 1990's many being previously state owned developments. One of the problems with housing compounds in Shanghai is that they need regular maintenance to ensure they stay clean, safe and pleasant places for the residents. The older buildings and compounds compared with other residential projects that were built some time after the 1990s, were charging a much lower property management fees. The increase in fees will assist the property managers ease the continuous losses for servicing such aged buildings and motivate them to provide a better service. More than 1.8 million tenant households living in such apartments will see the increase in fees made to future property management bills. Local Property management companies in Shanghai have watched labor costs increase by multiple times over the last decade but the increase in service charges has always been difficult to implement. The lowest property management bill for such an apartment was 10.5 RMB (US$1.66) per month, the new rules will allow property management companies to charge up-to 24 RMB / month. The local Shanghai housing authority is expected to make use of the new price levy to solve a long-term dilemma in such neighborhoods where residents regularly complain of inadequate services provided by the the property managers and where property managers are reluctant to improve services due to the costs involved.
  15. A common misconception among expats new to Shanghai is that a local Chinese agent or agency will be cheaper, or have the ability to get a better price on a property in opposed to a English speaking or Expat agency. Now if your budget is less than 4000 RMB, then your only option might be to use a local Chinese agency (street shop), as the work involved with sourcing and negotiating for a property of this price is generally too much trouble for many agents to want to get involved with. The reason behind why local Chinese agencies they are not cheaper is that you personally do not pay any cash to the agent, they are paid by the landlord usually the amount one months rental fee. Here is where it gets confusing: Because the agents get 1 months commission from the landlord, if they negotiate a better rental fee on your behalf with the landlord, then they are also reducing their commission amount. so.... what motivates an agent to negotiate for a better price on a property ? A few reasons why you Should use a reputable expat orientated agency is that they usually provide a myriad of additional services and aftercare support for no additional fee, such as City Orientation, Domestic Help, Cross Cultural Training, Visa and Legal Support. The expat agencies are familiar with the problems expats have when relocating to Shanghai and have the solutions ready. Their Business is built on referrals and relationships, to get those referrals a good expat focused agency will support you though your stay in Shanghai and assist with your departure and getting your deposit back when its time to leave.
×