Economic review

Morgan Stanley eyes bigger presence in Chinese market

2018-06-03 13:44:48 (Beijing Time)         English.news.cn

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BEIJING, June 3 (Xinhua) -- Morgan Stanley is seeking a stronger presence in China due to wider opening in financial sector and a growing middle income group.

"Morgan Stanley is very focused on the Chinese market which has been a very stable and important part of our global franchise," James Gorman, chairman and CEO of the New York-based investment bank, said during its three-day event that ended Friday.

Gorman said the bank wants to increase its stake in joint venture Morgan Stanley Huaxin Securities to 51 percent from the current 49 percent and ultimately to a hundred percent.

In April foreign investors were allowed majority ownership of securities firms and many foreign players have applied for a controlling stake of their joint ventures in China.

With more than two decades in China, Morgan Stanley is still expanding from equities to asset management.

"With an economy this large and given the success of a lot of the businesses, there has been significant wealth creation and there are a lot of financial needs for Chinese citizens," Gorman said.

China has the largest middle-class in the world, around 300 million and growing, accounting for 30 percent of the world's total. Morgan Stanley expects China to gain high-income status by as early as 2025.

"Over time we would definitely look to move to a bigger presence in wealth management within China. That is a logical step for us," Gorman said.

Gorman said the bank will channel more energy into helping new tech firms raise capital, state-owned enterprises reform, and helping Chinese companies to go global.

The Morgan Stanley event attracted more than 1,000 investors looking for opportunities in China and executives from more than 300 Chinese companies.

"It's a major opportunity for us to bring investors from around the world to China to get a better sense of some of the exciting developments taking place here and to meet high quality companies," Gorman said.

Gorman spoke highly of new measures introduced since the beginning of 2018, including lower auto tariffs and fewer restrictions on foreign investment.

"The Chinese government is giving access to investors around the world to participate more in this very fast growing, large economy. That is a positive thing," Gorman said.