Shanghai is embracing the opportunity to establish itself as a leading international finance centre. The pace of reform and developments in the last 12 months – including the expansion of the Free Trade Zone and the launch of Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect – provide a clear indication of what is being achieved, what is possible and the strong commitment of the Shanghai authorities to make real progress.
This paper considers the experience of London and the UK more generally in the regulation of the financial and related professional services sector that has underpinned its historic and on-going success. While there are several key UK cities where financial and related professional services firms have a large presence, such as Edinburgh, Leeds and Norwich, this paper will focus on the City of London in response to the Pudong authority’s specific request. In summary, the London experience has shown that deep connections and engagement between regulators, self-regulatory organisations and trade and industry associations have been, and continue to be, vital to the success of the financial and related professional services sector.
As business has become more global, these organisations have also responded by building connections with organisations across the world, thereby supporting UK inbound and outbound investment. The UK’s historic strength in financial and related professional services has also been driven by the strong engagement and involvement of professionals in the development and implementation of the regulatory and policy environment for their sector.
This has supported the evolution of a regulatory framework that is workable and effective, and contributes to innovation and growth. The establishment of reputable, respected and representative trade and industry associations led by practitioners - such as TheCityUK, plays a key role by providing an effective channel for informed discussion and engagement between business, regulators and policy-makers.