Empowering the Freelance Economy

Sunak set to rebuild The City by tapping China’s £40tn financial services market

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Chancellor Rishi Sunak has big plans to woo China’s $40tn financial services market to The City. Freelance consultants servicing the financial services industry should prepare for any upcoming opportunities. Ting Zhang, Co-Founder and CEO of China-focused business consultancy and freelance recruiter, Crayfish.io offers some tips on winning business with China.

In his annual Mansion House speech, the Chancellor said that the UK must strengthen its trading relationship with China, to balance the failed efforts to reopen direct access to EU markets. As previously reported by The Freelance Informer, China was already making an economic comeback last December, while Europe, was lobbed with the brunt of a collapse in global tourism.

“Too often, the debate on China lacks nuance,” said Chancellor Sunak in his speech.

“Some people on both sides argue either that we should sever all ties or focus solely on commercial opportunities at the expense of our values. Neither position adequately reflects the reality of our relationship with a vast, complex country, with a long history. The truth is, China is both one of the most important economies in the world and a state with fundamentally different values to ours. We need a mature and balanced relationship.

“That means being eyes wide open about their increasing international influence and continuing to take a principled stand on issues we judge to contravene our values. After all, principles only matter if they extend beyond our convenience,” said Sunak.

The speech was a useful platform to launch news of a sweeping set of reforms which he hopes will sharpen the UK’s competitive advantage in the financial services sector. This week he signed what he called “an ambitious financial services partnership with Singapore – a practical demonstration of our commitment to the Indo-Pacific tilt.”

The reforms should deliver the following:

  • Closer links with advanced and emerging financial centres around the world.
  • A ground-breaking deal with Switzerland – the most ambitious financial services agreement ever attempted.
  • Delegation of portfolio management.
  • Boost competitiveness across both regulation and tax for the wholesale capital markets, including the recommendations in Lord Hill’s listings review, including a fundamental review of London’s prospectus regime.
  • Reforming the “prudential regulation” of the insurance sector.
  • Giving the public the opportunity to invest in the Government’s green initiatives through NS&I’s world-first Green Savings Bonds.

Tips on winning business with China

A reputable source and sounding board for anyone looking to do business with China is Ting Zhang, Co-Founder and CEO of China-focused business consultancy and freelance recruiter, Crayfish.io. Zhang knows the ins and outs of winning business in the lucrative Chinese market- she’s been doing it for 20 years – and by the same token, now creating successful avenues for China-based companies to launch in the UK.

Knowing what to expect when working with Chinese companies will open your eyes to the challenges and possibilities. However, once you have proven yourself with a Chinese client or customer, the world is your oyster, according to Zhang. But be prepared to act fast, be accessible during China’s working hours, and learn how to use WeChat.

Crayfish is, for the most part, a Cambridge-based business consultancy specialising in China-related cross-border research and commerce, but in recent years as the company started to use more freelancers in a range of areas, their freelancers are now in a position to sell their services via Crayfish’s platform.

“There is an increasing number of opportunities coming up with freelancing as a lot of work has shifted remotely,” Zhang told The Freelance Informer. “One thing freelancers will have to keep in mind, however, is that Chinese companies are very cost-conscious, except for some of the very large listed companies,” she says.

To read more tips about doing business with Chinese clients check out this report:


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