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Fluency in Mandarin Becomes Key to Hong Kong Bankers' Success

Experienced expats lacking language skills for mainland Chinese clients shut out HONG KONG -- In a sign of changing fortunes in Asia's financial hub, it took almost a year for one experienced foreign private banker in Hong Kong to land a job after he was let go by his previous employer in early 2019.   The reason: most employers said they preferred -- and were easily hiring -- Mandarin speakers for such positions.   The banker, who is originally from the U.K. and has more than a decade of experience in wealth management in Hong Kong, was stunned when companies...
中文

Digital Dollar To Be ‘In Competition’ With Bitcoin

Digital dollars and central bank digital currencies are fast becoming a reality, with China this month reportedly expanding a pilot program for its digital yuan.   While the U.S. has barely even begun thinking about a digital dollar, its potential implications have generated extensive debate, with a former governor of the Reserve Bank of India, Raghuram Rajan, saying bitcoin and Facebook's libra cryptocurrency may eventually be "in a competition" with central bank digital currencies.   "I would like to think that [bitcoin and libra] are also in competition with the central bank digital currency," Rajan, who served as the International Monetary Fund's chief economist before...
中文

Crypto Yuan Will Meet the Dollar

A major battle in the U.S.-China financial cold war could be fought over a decades-old currency peg. Money is whatever people will use to swap, store, and measure value. Since 1846, Hong Kong residents have relied on notes issued by commercial banks. And for almost four decades, they have been safe in the knowledge that 78 units of the local currency would always fetch 10 U.S. dollars. That certainty has spawned a globally competitive financial center.    But change is on its way. The people of Hong Kong may be asked to try out a new kind of money. Whether they bite could decide the outcome of a great superpower rivalry.  A digital renminbi trial will start in Hong Kong, according to China’s Commerce Ministry,...
中文

China's Richest Woman Buys EU Citizenship with 'Golden Passport'

According to a batch of leaked documents obtained by Al Jazeera known as the Cyprus Papers, Yang is among more than 500 high-net-worth Chinese citizens who have acquired "golden passports" by each investing at least 2 million Euros (US$2.3 million). Since the tiny island country is a member of the EU, obtaining a Cypriot passport has become a backdoor to quickly enable wealthy individuals to gain EU citizenship.   The news agency has not provided the names of all the Chinese nationals on the list, but it did release eight key figures. Yang was at the top of the list, as...
中文

It Would Cost $1 Trillion to Move Global Supply Chains Out of China—But The Long-term Gains Could Be Worth It

The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on the supply chains of companies around the world—prompting firms in 80% of sectors globally to recalibrate their operations in some fashion, according to analysts at Bank of America Global Research.   Coupled with a worldwide trend away from globalization in recent years—one spurred by “populist antipathy toward free trade” and epitomized by the U.S.-China trade war—the pandemic has accelerated a shift toward the “re-shoring” of supply chains by companies around the globe, BofA analysts say.   But with emerging markets like China having entrenched themselves as pivotal to the global supply chain, it’s clear that re-shoring away from such markets...
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Direct Investing Is Rising Among Family Offices

Wealthy families are investing directly in private companies through single-family and multi-family offices in rising numbers as these offices become more sophisticated, according to a study released on Friday by Fintrx, a Boston-based data, and research firm.    More than half of the approximate 3,500 to 5,000 family offices around the world invest directly today, according to the study, which draws on the firm’s database of more than 3,000 individual family offices globally and the 13,000-plus direct investment deals they have tracked.    The direct-investment trend is “consistent with broader trends we’re seeing in the ultra-high-net-worth market toward greater transparency,...
中文

Grenada CIP Developer Caught on Camera Promoting Illegal Discounts: CIU Investigating

LONDON, England – The government of Grenada and the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) chief executive officer, Percival Clouden, July 22, issued a circular categorically stating any actions (discounting, rebates, buybacks, etc.,) that reduce the amount invested by a citizenship applicant below the statutory minimum real estate threshold is illegal. Grenada’s quick and decisive action to investigate “illegal discounting of investment amount for application under section 11” received commendation by many in the industry; moreover, with the emphasis that based on findings this could lead to revocation of CBI approved status for the offending project given the developer was actively and...

How The Pandemic Is Accelerating The Death Of Paper Passports

There’s a growing trend towards the use of biometric data–personal characteristics and measurements–to allow people entry into countries by scanning their faces, eyes, and fingerprints, instead of using hard copy documents.   With the arrival of Covid-19, many believe it now makes sense to add health information to biometric data. Electronic passports could become a form of ‘safe travel’ across foreign lands, allowing the healthiest people to pass freely across borders.   The concept of passports is as old as countries   The first mention of something resembling a passport is in the Bible, in the book of Nehemiah when...