(Economic Observation) Chongqing's construction of an inland international financial center and ASEAN cooperation will broaden and deepen

  BEIJING, January 24, Chongqing electric

question: Chongqing to build inland international financial centers will broaden and deepen ASEAN cooperation

  China News Service reporter Liu Xian

  At the two meetings in Chongqing that are being held here, Chongqing Mayor Tang Liangzhi made a government work report, proposing to "promote the joint construction of a financial center in the western region, and accelerate the construction of an inland international financial center based in the west and facing ASEAN."

The reporter's recent interview found that this may write a new chapter in the "face-to-face" financial interconnection between China's western region and ASEAN countries.

  Chongqing is the operation center of the third intergovernmental cooperation project between China and Singapore, the China-Singapore (Chongqing) Strategic Connectivity Demonstration Project (Sino-Singapore Connectivity Project for short).

As of the end of 2020, under the framework of this project, there have been 193 contracted projects in the financial sector with an amount equivalent to US$25.5 billion.

  Yang Yi, deputy director of Chongqing China-Singapore Demonstration Project Management Bureau in charge of financial cooperation, introduced in an exclusive interview with a reporter from Chinanews.com that China-Singapore financial cooperation continues to expand in coverage and radiation, which will effectively help the construction of the western financial center and the inland international financial center , And gradually promote the "face-to-face" financial interconnection between Western China and ASEAN countries.

  In December 2020, Chongqing Liangjiang Zhongxin Jialiang Financial Technology RMB Equity Investment Fund was registered and established. It will take full advantage of Singapore's GLP Group in overseas markets to serve both international and domestic markets and invest in high-quality projects in China and Southeast Asian countries.

  The new land-sea channel connects western China and the ASEAN region.

The reporter learned from the Bank of Communications Chongqing Branch that the bank is exploring the establishment of a new western land-sea channel (international) investment fund of funds, supporting the establishment of Sino-foreign equity investment funds and venture capital funds in the China (Chongqing) Pilot Free Trade Zone, giving full play to the Bank of Communications Group License advantages and characteristic business structure provide diversified financial services for the upgrading and investment promotion of enterprises in the park.

  At present, China-Singapore cross-border financing channels have basically been completed, and Western China enterprises can facilitate the use of various cross-border financing tools such as international commercial loans, cross-border bond issuance, direct listing, and real estate investment trusts.

As of December 2020, under the framework of the China-Singapore interconnection project, a total of 150 cross-border financing projects including international commercial loans, cross-border bond issuance, and real estate investment trusts have been implemented, with a financing amount equivalent to USD 13.1 billion.

  The reporter also learned from the Chongqing Business Management Department of the People's Bank of China that the Chongqing Foreign Exchange Management Department of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange is based on Chongqing's characteristics. Since 2020, it has intensively introduced three types of 10 capital projects featuring "extended quotas, facilitated convenience, and simplified processes". Facilitation measures for foreign exchange management have effectively expanded cross-border financing.

For example, since the implementation of the policy of raising the macro-prudential coefficient of full-scale cross-border financing from 1 to 1.25 in March 2020, the Chongqing Foreign Exchange Administration Department of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange has expanded the scale of cross-border financing by USD 5.17 billion for 45 companies in its jurisdiction.

  It is worth looking forward to in the future that the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) will bring benefits to the "face-to-face" financial interconnection between China's western region and ASEAN countries.

Yang Yi said that the China-Singapore interconnection project will vigorously promote cooperation in various aspects of the financial sector.

  Regarding RCEP trade in services, 7 countries including Singapore have adopted negative list commitments, and 8 countries including China have adopted positive list commitments, which will be converted into a negative list 6 years after the agreement takes effect.

During the six-year transition period, the China-Singapore interconnection project can explore open policies in the financial sector and provide reproducible and popularized experience.

  Regarding RCEP goods trade, more than 90% of goods trade in the region will eventually achieve zero tariffs after the agreement takes effect.

Yang Yi believes that the cross-border financial blockchain application scenario business pilot based on the new land-sea channel can be fully utilized to strengthen cross-border supply chain financial services and promote the integrated development of finance, logistics, trade and industry.

  Regarding the RCEP financial sector, the financial sector annex represents the highest level of commitment to the opening up of China’s financial sector, introducing new financial services, self-regulatory organizations, and financial information transfer and processing rules for the first time.

Yang Yi analyzed that under the framework of the China-Singapore interconnection project, this will help financial institutions in the central and western regions to better expand the ASEAN market and attract more financial institutions in the ASEAN region to develop in western China.