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Award offers expats lower taxes

SHANGHAI will launch a "financial talent award" soon to make the city more attractive to foreign financial specialists, said Fang Xinghai, director of the Shanghai Financial Services Office, yesterday.

The award also allows for a lower tax burden for expatriate financial talents in Shanghai and aims to build the city into an international financial hub by 2020.

"We can't change the standard of the individual income tax on foreigners working in Shanghai - that is a national issue. But we do hope to attract more financial talents into Shanghai by lowering the tax burden on them," Fang said at the First European Union Shanghai International Financial Forum.

He said the award will be given to senior foreign executives working for Shanghai-registered financial firms and details of the incentive will be announced soon.

Compared with Singapore and Hong Kong, the Chinese mainland imposes a relatively high individual income tax of up to 45 percent on foreigners working in the city, which hurts Shanghai's ability to attract foreign talents, said Fang.

He also noted Shanghai will soon set up two special financial courts in Huangpu District and Pudong New Area to deal with financial disputes.

Meanwhile, Fang urged the central government to give Shanghai more freedom to innovate.

These efforts are aimed at accelerating Shanghai into an international financial center. The State Council, China's Cabinet, backs developing Shanghai into a global center of finance and shipping by 2020.


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