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FALLING SHORT

What Mumbai needs to do to replace Hong Kong as Asia’s main financial hub

Mumbai-Financial sector-India
REUTERS/Hemanshi Kamani
The city of dreams?
  • Prathamesh Mulye
By Prathamesh Mulye

Writer, banking and economy

Large-scale protests. Ruthless crackdowns. A draconian law. Hong Kong’s relationship with the world has been completely altered by China after it imposed a new national security law on June 30, undermining Asia’s top financial center.

In the fast-moving world of business and finance, the tussle to replace Hong Kong is already under way, and India’s financial capital Mumbai could take advantage of its rivals’ problems. “It looks like Hong Kong’s independent institutions, including the courts and the central bank, will get affected in the future,” said Pranay Singh, economic research analyst at GlobalData. “This affects its image as a business-friendly hub.”

The talk of turning Mumbai into a global financial behemoth isn’t new, but little effort has been made to turn that dream into a reality. While cities like Singapore and Tokyo appear to be ahead of Mumbai in the race, some experts think that India’s financial hub has certain advantages, and the primary structures in place to compete.

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