Hi, I’m Don Kanak, Chairman of Eastspring Investments, the Asia asset management business of Prudential plc.
It’s a pleasure to be able to participate in the 2019 Special Session of the China Development Forum. Prudential was established in 1848 in London and has been operating in Asia for more than 95 years.
In 2000, Prudential became the first UK life insurer to enter the Chinese life insurance market via establishing a joint venture together with the CITIC Group, CITIC-Prudential Life Insurance.
In 2018, that company was operating in 87 cities, with more than 50,000 agents and employees, and serving more than 1.3 million Chinese customers.
In 2005, together with CITIC Trust, we established a joint venture fund management company, CITIC-Prudential Fund Management. Next year, that company will celebrate its 15th anniversary.
We are pleased be to be in joint ventures with a strong and strategic group, the CITIC Group, with whom we share a steadfast commitment to the stable development of the financial system and financial wellbeing of Chinese citizens.
We welcome the future opening-up of the Chinese financial system, and we have benefited from the opening of the system so far.
In 2018, Eastspring Investments established a wholly-foreign owned investment management enterprise in Shanghai.
That company launched its first fund this year, a fund distributed to high-net-worth individuals, and it will focus on serving the needs of high net worth individuals and institutional investors in China.
We see a bright future for the asset management industry in China and believe by 2030, it is likely to be the second largest asset management market in the world.
We think asset management as an industry will not only create excellent jobs for millions of people, but will also help countless families and individuals prepare nest eggs for retirement and of course provide and mobilize long-term financing for corporations, for governments and for small businesses.
China’s opening-up is creating other meaningful opportunities to contribute to society. Prudential’s community investment arm, Prudence Foundation, has been operating in Asia for many years, helping improve the lives of individuals and to help make communities more resilient.
For me, one of the most meaningful things I have been able to do in my work in China is last year as Chairman of Prudence Foundation, signing a Memorandum of Cooperation with the China Development Research Foundation to support their initiatives in early childhood development and nutrition in poverty-stricken areas of China.
Since my first visit to China more than 25 years ago, I have seen extraordinary progress -- socially, economically, in education, and perhaps, most visibly, in China’s impact across the world.
I’m hopeful that China’s continuing development and opening-up will create a brighter future both for its citizens and for Asia and other regions. And I am confident that it will also create opportunities for groups like ours, Prudential, for growth in China and globally.