Financial Cluster in the Bund: Historical Charms and Modern Vitality
The Bund, a symbol of Shanghai, used to be the essential cradle of China’s financial industry. The financial cluster of the Bund stretches from the southern bank of Suzhou Creek in the north to the intersection of Lujiabang and Waima roads in the south, and from the Huangpu River on the east to the area surrounded by South Henan, Renmin, Zhonghua and Sangyuan roads to the west. It covers around 2.6 square kilometers, flanking 4.8 kilometers of the Huangpu riverbank.
The financial cluster is a core of the Shanghai International Financial Centre. According to the regional development plan, the available area to be developed for the financial cluster is about 100 hectares, with about 3.35 million square meters of floor space. In the last five years, floor space has increased by about 1.8 million square meters and is projected to be 4.4 million square meters in 2020. Of that, the business area will comprise 2.8 million square meters and office area will be 1.6 million square meters.
In recent years, the goal of the financial cluster has been to support the construction of the Shanghai International Financial Centre. To achieve that, the cluster has drawn on the best of the Bund’s financial traditions and resources under a general strategy of “mutually supplementing and coordinating development.” It has undertaken the framework of construction and functional development, focused on new financial services, and it has promoted financial functions, expansion of scale and model innovation. The targets and main tasks shall be:
(1.) to foster three centers, namely (a) the Assets Management Center with the functions of providing nationwide assets management services and R&D of global assets management; (b) a Capital Operation Center helping enterprises with capital operations and supporting their global strategic expansion; and (c) Professional Financial Services Center supporting intermediary services, backstage services, and worldwide, high-end financial services outsourcing.
(2.) to focus on the following five trends for development: (a) new businesses mainly involving lease financing, quantitative trading, micro-and-small-sized financial services, trading and derivative investments; (b) independent operations and functions sectors splitting from existing financial institutions, which are generated after the financial institutions’ process of re-engineering and operational integration; (c) new areas derived from the combination of the financial industry with other industries, such as shipping finance, energy finance, and science and technology finance; (d) emerging forces of the financial sectors under non-financial central enterprises and private enterprises, which are transferring the industrial capital into financial capital; and (e) new technologies based on the Internet, cloud computing and big data, which promote the financial operation efficiency, lower the costs of credit and enhance the ability to manage financial risks.
With a vigorous growth in recent years, the financial cluster in the Bund continues to expand the scale of “new finance,” and the emergence of over 50 financial institutions of varying types each year assists industrial ecology. In 2013, the government of the Huangpu District steps to build the Bund Financial Innovation Experiment Zone, fostered relative supporting policies and measures, and focused on the development of Internet and private finance.