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Bigger role seen for emerging global financial centres like Mumbai

New York are not about to lose their spots as the world's leading financial centres but they are being challenged by emerging market upstarts in a potentially lucrative area: the management of funds moving between developing economies.

business Updated: Jul 08, 2010 00:48 IST

New York are not about to lose their spots as the world's leading financial centres but they are being challenged by emerging market upstarts in a potentially lucrative area: the management of funds moving between developing economies.

With developed economies struggling and emerging markets thriving, more and more financial deals are being cut well away from the traditional centres.

Rising trade between emerging economies, cross-border mergers, acquisitions by Indian and Chinese companies and moves by developing world businesses to raise capital in each other's markets will spur growth of financial centres in the fastest growing economies, according to experts who addressed the Reuters Emerging Markets Summit in Sao Paulo last week.

For the bankers clustering in cities like Sao Paulo and Mumbai, the intra-emerging markets movement of funds represents an alluring chance to make money.

"We see flows between Africa and India, India and China, India and Korea being much bigger," said Neeraj Swaroop, CEO of Standard Chartered's India business.

"Not just big companies but also small- and medium-sized companies are making outbound investments. For banks like Standard Chartered, these are immense opportunities to pursue."

Stephen Jennings, CEO of Renaissance Capital, a Moscow-based investment bank focused on developing economies, said he is already seeing a rapid integration of capital flows in emerging markets. "In our M&A practice, 80 per cent of our deals don't have a Western face. And the same thing will happen with financial flows," he said. "London cannot possibly retain its role as a primary capital markets centre for emerging markets ... I think it will be displaced totally over the next two to three years."