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Press Release for June 7, 2018 Media Briefing by the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government

June 08, 2018

         Press Release for June 7, 2018 Media Briefing by the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government

The Information Office of Shanghai Municipality held a media briefing on June 7 and deputy director of the Shanghai Financial Service Office Xie Dong introduced the basic information about the Lujiazui Forum 2018 to be held next week.

Deputy director of People’s Bank of China’s Shanghai headquarters Sun Hui, Shanghai Banking Regulatory Bureau deputy director Zhou Wenjie, China Securities Regulatory Bureau Spokesperson Gao Li, and Vice chairman of China Insurance Regulatory Commission Shanghai Bureau Wang Xiaodong, attended the press conference and answered questions from the media. 

Lujiazui Forum was created as a high-level global platform for influential government officials by Shanghai Municipal People’s Government and national level financial regulatory authorities since 2008, and the annual event has been successfully held in the past nine years.

This year the Lujiazui Forum 2018 will be held on June 14-15 in Shanghai. The past decade has witnessed the transformation and progress of Shanghai as it grows into an international financial center. Lujiazui Forum has evolved into a well-known international high-end dialogue platform with extensive global influence.

I The theme and topics of the Lujiazui Forum 2018

As China enters a new era, it has also opened up new windows and started a new period that strengthens the development of China's integration and development with the world. Under the backdrop of continuously opening up and strengthen cooperation, Shanghai is also accelerating the construction of an international economic, financial, trade, shipping, and science and technology innovation center.

Financial center is at the core of Shanghai’s transformation into an international center for economic, financial, trade, shipping, and science and technology innovation. It is also pivotal for Shanghai to build up strategic advantage and establish well-known brands for Shanghai manufacturing, Shanghai shopping, Shanghai services and Shanghai culture.

This year, the theme of the Lujiazui Forum is “Shanghai's Development towards an International Financial Center in the New Era” and it is aimed at climbing towards a higher level for Shanghai’s transformation as an international financial center and make a further step into the forefront of the global financial center through brainstorming and drawing on the views of the general public to further identify the points of strength for the development of Shanghai's financial reforms and stability.

At present, the world economy is expected to continue to recover, while there are also lots of uncertainties. For instance, major economies' policy adjustments and their spillover effects are all up in the air, protectionism is tenser and more sharpened, and geopolitical risks are rising. In the context of profound changes in the international economic and financial environment, last year's central economic work conference put forward Xi's socialist economic ideas with Chinese characteristics of new era which take "promoting developments of high quality" as the basic requirement. To achieve the high quality development, an efficient financial system is crucial. At the moment, China is going through the financial deepening processes. What are the key tasks for the future financial revolutions? How to make finance better serve the real economy and boost innovative growth? The first general assembly will focus on the new era's socialist economic ideas with Chinese characteristics and the development of Chinese finance, and have deep discussions.

It has been ten years since the international financial crisis broke out, and the world economy is stepping back to recovery. However, risks and uncertainties still exist. In the face of various profound changes such as growth momentum, the development patterns, the globalization process and the economic management system, how can the world economy achieve new sustainable growth? How should the global financial governance system be further improved? The second general assembly will focus on the world economic growth and construction of financial governance system under economic globalization, and gather wisdom from both home and abroad to respond positively to these major issues of concern.

Among all kinds of risks China's economy has been faced with, financial risks are particularly prominent, for example, the Black Swan, the Gray Rhino and the Minsky Moment. "Preventing and resolving major risks" is one of China's three major combats in the next three years. To solve the difficulties and problems in this battle, the key is to deepen the reforms in an all-round way. This year marks the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening up and also the tenth anniversary of the international community's response to the global financial crisis. Looking back on the past, what international experience in the prevention and control of financial risks is worth learning from? Looking ahead, where is the next step for China's financial reform and opening up? The third plenary session will focus on deepening financial reform and opening up and also preventing and controlling financial risks and will have deep discussions.

Thanks to science and technology development of the world and the economic growth needs of China, the financial system of China is currently facing three new development opportunities: fintech which is developing alongside the fourth industrial revolution centered on the Internet, inclusive finance which helps more people from different background to share the benefits of development, and green finance which promotes industrial restructuring and follows the principle that “lucid water and lush mountains are invaluable assets”. In the face of opportunities and challenges, how should financial institutions timely adjust their development strategy and business priorities? How should financial regulators put in place better mechanisms and effectively guard against risks?  Plenary session IV will focus on proactively discussing related issues such as the opportunities and challenges in Fintech, Inclusive Finance and Green Finance. 

China’s “Belt and Road” initiative has become a bright spot as economic globalization faces headwinds. Promoting infrastructure development and connectivity is a core aspect of the initiative, whereas financing turns out to be a major challenge for achieving connectivity. Meanwhile, pushing forward the “Belt and Road” initiative calls for more robust comprehensive service capacity of financial markets and institutions. What are the gaps in financial services for the initiative? How should financial institutions get involved? What kind of financial risks should be watched and controlled?    Plenary session V will focus on building comprehensive capacity of finance for the “Belt and Road” Initiative and conduct in-depth discussions.

The world-class city-clusters with megacities such as New York, Chicago, Tokyo and Frankfurt at the core are the most vibrant and efficient regions in the global economy. China is now building Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the Pearl River Delta and the Yangtze River Delta into world-class city-clusters. What role does finance play in the development of internationally recognized world-class city-clusters? How to build an efficient financial system that is conducive to the development of city-clusters? How to promote financial innovation in this regard? What kind of international experience is useful for China?  Plenary session VI will focus on financial cooperation in the development of world-class city-clusters.

In addition, in order to further enrich the connotation of the forum, Shanghai also host two parallel sessions this year. Parallel session I is New Era, New Finance, Commercial Banks Driving Shanghai’s Financial Center. In this new era, new finance powered by technology is thriving and the financial sector is opening wider to the outside. Amidst an ever-changing environment, how can commercial banks balance financial innovation and risk prevention and mitigation, while serving the high-quality economic growth? Shanghai, at the forefront of China’s financial opening, is now in the critical stage of building itself an international financial center. How can commercial banks help to realize the goal?  Parallel session II is retrospectives and prospects of Shanghai’s International Financial Center Initiative. Since 40 years ago, especially since the goal of building Shanghai into an international financial center, remarkable achievements have been made in Shanghai’s financial reform and opening. At this critical juncture, what lessons and inspirations can we draw from the past experience of Shanghai’s financial reform and opening? Looking ahead and benchmarking international norms and best practices, what are the weak links that should be immediately addressed? What are the focus areas that we should seek breakthroughs?

II Preparation work and progress of the forum

The 10th Lujiazui Forum 2018 is co-hosted by Shanghai Municipal People's Government, The People’s Bank of China, China Banking & Insurance Regulatory Commission and China Securities Regulatory Commission. The People’s Bank of China governor Yi Gang and Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong will co-chair the forum. As one of the hosts and organizers of the forum, Shanghai attaches great importance to the preparation work of the forum. The city leaders held special meetings to study and deploy the preparation work of the forum. With joint efforts of different departments, the preparation work for the forum has made good progress and will be held as scheduled. In the publication made for the forum, the co-chair of the forum jointly issued a joint speech. Pan Gongsheng, deputy governor of the People's Bank of China and head of State Administration of Foreign Exchange and Wu Qing, the city’s vice mayor wrote articles for the forum.

About 400 people will participate this year’s forum. Up to now, some 50 guest speakers have confirmed their attendance. Speakers from the government and finance supervision departments include senior ranking officials from the People’s Bank of China, China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, China Securities Regulatory Commission, Shanghai Municipal Government, Financial Conduct Authority of UK, Policy & Resources Committee, City of London, Astana International Finance Center, Abu Dhabi Global Market, Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau of Hong Kong, etc, have all confirmed their attendance and speech deliveries. Guests from international financial organizations such as governors of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and the New Development Bank have confirmed their attendance and speech deliveries. Experts and scholars including the 2011 and 2013 Nobel laureates in economics have confirmed to attend the forum and deliver speeches. Officials from the Shanghai Stock Exchange, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd, Luxembourg Stock Exchange have confirmed to attend the forum and deliver speeches. Senior officials from major financial organizations including the China Development Bank, Export-Import Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China, Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of Communications, People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China, China Life Insurance (Group) Company, China UnionPay, China Investment Corporation, HSBC, Mizuho Financial Group, Standard Chartered Bank, JPMorgan Chase & Co, DBS, etc, have confirmed to attend the forum.

Professionals from both Chinese and overseas financial organizations, experts and scholars from universities and research institutes, senior officials from finance brokerage institutes and government officials from finance-related departments and leaders from large-sized enterprises will be the main audience at the forum. 

III Some new initiatives at this year’s forum

Based on the forum experience gained over the past nine years, this year’s Lujiazui Forum has made some new explorations in a couple of areas mainly covering agenda arrangement, guest invitation and communication channels.

Innovative arrangement of agenda. To be more focused on its theme, six plenary sessions on six topics will be held at the forum while two parallel sessions will also be hosted.

Heavy-weight guests gathering at the forum. At this year’s forum, many high-ranking officials and heads from government departments, financial organizations, as well as renowned experts and scholars from both home and abroad have confirmed their participation at the forum to share their insights and wisdom. 

Various channels adopted for better communication. During the forum, mainstream media outlets from both China and abroad will provide prompt and in-depth reports via TV, Internet, newspapers and magazines on views and perspectives shared by key guest speakers. Among them, Dragon TV, ICS and CBN will do live broadcast for some sessions of the forum while Eastday.com, coupled with some other famous portals in the country, will do live webcast for the entire forum. Shanghai Municipal Government will live-stream the forum on its official social media account and the official website of Lujiazui Forum will offer comprehensive reports about the forum. The official website of Shanghai Finance has provided a direct link connecting the website of Lujiazui Forum and the official social media account of Shanghai Finance will offer frequent updates for forum-related information.

The city’s aim to build itself into an international finance center has encountered new demand in a new era. Shanghai should seize the historical opportunities of further opening-up as a national strategy to deepen its financial reforms so as to realize its target to generally build itself into an international finance center by 2020 that well reflects its economic strength and yuan’s international status. More efforts should be made to boost the synergy between the finance, innovation centers and the FTZ development and the finance industry should better serve the country’s Belt and Road Initiative as well as the construction of the Yangtze River Economic Belt.