2018 review: the environment for foreign investment in Shanghai

(en.sh-italent.com)Updated : 2019-01-03


The Bund Finance Center in Shanghai on July 24, 2018 [Photo/VCG]

Shanghai, China's economic hub, recently released a white paper on the environment for foreign investment as part of an annual publication by the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce examining the city's business climate. 

The paper includes a general overview and takes a detailed look at government policies, civil services, investment cooperation and supporting infrastructure. 

To highlight the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening-up policy, the paper shared new angles on Shanghai's efforts to introduce foreign capital and enhance the business environment, noting in particular the first China International Import Expo in November 2018 and the 100 measures to help the city open wider to the outside world. 

As of 2017, Shanghai has invited 91,000 foreign funded projects to the city and realized an accumulated actual foreign investment of $223.1 billion, accounting for 11 percent of the national total. The service industry stands as the most attractive for foreigners, with its actual investment taking up 95 percent of the city's total. 

The clustering of regional headquarters and research centers in Shanghai reflects the city's increasing economic appeal for foreign investors. 

By the end of 2017, 625 transnational companies had set up regional headquarters in Shanghai, covering areas such as automobiles, electronics, wholesale and retail, chemical engineering, and bio-pharmaceuticals. While their total tax revenue hit a new high, they have also displayed diversified capabilities in investment, management, research and development (R&D), trade, logistics and clearing. 

The total number of foreign-invested R&D centers also increased to 426, reflecting Shanghai's integration of innovative foundations, capital and talent reserve, making it possible for the city to advance towards a more cooperative, shared, open and synergetic environment. 

The paper was first launched by the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce in 2006. This year's edition was compiled by Deloitte China, a third-party consulting firm.