Shanghai: Shanghai’s free trade zone (FTZ) was opened yesterday with commerce minister Gao Hucheng on hand for the ceremony. The 29 sq km area would help "implement a more active opening-up strategy", Gao said.
Among key initiatives at the FTZ are the easing of restrictions on foreign investment, getting interest rates set by the markers and allowing the renminbi to traded freely with other currencies. 18 sectors including shipping have been allowed to set up in the FTZ.
Jefferies in a note to investors yesterday reckoned that the FTZ may eventually improve the financial infrastructure for trading but volume of trading will be driven by end demand of the cargoes not infrastructure.
Foreign carriers hoping that the FTZ would allow them to tranship in China are in for a disappointment.
“Vessels will still have to be owned by Chinese interests to be allowed to operate same country transhipment,” Jeffries noted. [01/10/13]