MR. SHANGKONG | South China Morning Post
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  • Mar 5, 2015
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George Chen is Managing Editor for International Edition. He muses about the interplay between the two financial centres, Shanghai and Hong Kong, in his Mr. Shangkong columns online and in print. George, a 2014 Yale World Fellow, is the author of two books about China and Hong Kong. Follow George on Twitter: @george_chen

Xi Jinping's visit to Shanghai zone gives new hope to economic reform

Chinese President Xi Jinping talks with workers at Waigaoqiao comprehensive service hall of the Shanghai free-trade zone. Photo: Xinhua

The Shanghai free-trade zone, which has so far received mixed feedback from foreign investors since it was launched last October, finally won its biggest supporter last Friday - a surprise first-time visit by President Xi Jinping.

Saturday, 31 May, 2014, 6:17pm

Global business best done in person - or you may regret it

In Asian culture, some procedures for face-to-face meetings cannot be simply done through video conference calls.

I've been on the road for the past week - first in Washington and then in New York - for some business meetings with our US media counterparts.

19 May 2014 - 4:23am

Chinese banks in Hong Kong go quiet on last year's promised bonus

Barclays announced last week that it was cutting 14,000 jobs across the group globally.

Is it too late to get your bonus in May? I'm talking about last year's bonus, not this year's. It is something that some Hong Kong-based staff at several mainland investment banks have been waiting anxiously for.

12 May 2014 - 6:28am 5 comments

Big-name banks no guarantee for IPO success

WH Group was initially forced to cut the size of its share offering before it was eventually cancelled because of cool market response.

The failure of top mainland pork producer Shuanghui's US$6 billion initial public offering - once slated to be Asia's biggest this year - offers at least two lessons - never overestimate the power of investment banks and never just go for big names.

5 May 2014 - 6:54am 2 comments

Booming years for Singapore but a lost decade for Hong Kong?

The Marina Bay Sands resort: Singapore's new landmark.

When Deng Xiaoping decided in the early 1990s to completely transform the Pudong New Area in Shanghai and open it up to foreign investors, Singapore had the chance to partner with Shanghai to develop Pudong.

28 Apr 2014 - 7:50am 45 comments

Transparent hiring needed in equal opportunity Hong Kong

Song Lin. UBS was caught in the media spotlight last week over an alleged affair between its senior investment banker Helen Yang Lijuan and Song, top boss of China Resources. Photo: Jonathan Wong

In China, sometimes guanxi is more important than money. Actually, guanxi - relationships and connections - is equally important in the rest of the world too. Can you ignore connections when doing business in Washington or London? I doubt it.

In Hong Kong, especially in the city's financial industry, guanxi has made a difference for many banks and their clients in many cases.

21 Apr 2014 - 7:30am 1 comment

Is the market reform a true 'win-win' for Shanghai and Hong Kong?

The scheme may be more about the relationship between the yuan as the mainland's official currency and the Hong Kong dollar.

On the mainland, the term "win-win" has been popular for quite some time, replacing the term "zero-sum" game we often heard during the Cold War era.

14 Apr 2014 - 7:51am 1 comment

SCMP financial editor George Chen joins prestigious Yale fellowship

George Chen. Photo: SCMP Pictures

South China Morning Post financial editor George Shu Chen has been selected as a 2014 Yale World Fellow.

Chen, 34, will join 15 other candidates in August for an intensive leadership training and academic enrichment programme at the prestigious American university.

7 Apr 2014 - 6:18pm

Acquisitions no easy way for Singaporean banks to win in Hong Kong, mainland China

Questions have been raised over the price OCBC paid in taking over Wing Hang Bank. Photos: AFP, Bloomberg

Can Singaporean banks win more business in Hong Kong or even in the much bigger mainland market simply through high-cost acquisitions?

7 Apr 2014 - 8:37am

Forget 'Likonomics', it's all about economic stimulus in China again

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang

When Li Keqiang took over as premier early last year, he quickly became known for an economic plan called "Likonomics".

7 Apr 2014 - 7:56am 3 comments

Hong Kong lawmakers need Shanghai trip to face up to social issues

Shanghai is definitely not what it used to be in the eyes of its people.

Most of the time, Shanghai just means business, but the city has also played some significant political roles in contemporary Chinese history. The Sino-US Shanghai Communiqué was signed there in 1972, marking a new chapter in ties for the two big nations.

31 Mar 2014 - 8:13am 1 comment

Citic's mega takeover deal comes as win-win for Beijing and Hong Kong

Citic's mega takeover deal comes as win-win for Beijing and Hong Kong

Beijing's decision to let a Hong Kong-listed unit of Citic Group take over its parent company in a deal valued at about 225 billion yuan (HK$283.6 billion) surprised the financial community on Wednesday evening.

31 Mar 2014 - 5:52pm 2 comments

Overseas study offers young education on foreign policy

US First Lady Michelle Obama talks with students who practise table tennis while visiting the Second High School in Beijing. Photo: Xinhua

US first lady Michelle Obama is absolutely right about the importance of overseas education, and that is exactly what the sons and daughters of many former and current mainland leaders have already experienced or are eager to experience.

24 Mar 2014 - 7:49am 3 comments

Shanghai 'revolution' may be uphill battle for Premier Li

Li Keqiang

Premier Li Keqiang has a tough job. From the new war on air pollution to maintaining strong economic growth in a more realistic manner, nothing is easy for the country's No 2 leader after President Xi Jinping.

17 Mar 2014 - 8:59am 3 comments

Hong Kong should not be a dumping ground for middling IPOs

Yao Gang, vice-chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission

"As long as you can meet the listing requirements of the Hong Kong stock exchange, you should definitely go there." That was the clear message from one of the most senior stock market regulators on the mainland when asked about the funding needs of small-sized, capital-hungry private enterprises.

10 Mar 2014 - 10:18am 5 comments