Shanghai’s commercial property sector is in the middle of a massive boom, despite the global economic slowdown and the opening at the weekend of more space in the shape of China’s tallest building, the 101-storey Shanghai World Financial Centre built by Minoru Mori, the Japanese property tycoon.

The office boom is so well entrenched it could turn out to be on a par with London during the 'Big Bang' years of the 1980s, when financial liberalisation helped double the size of the financial district in a decade, says Michael Thompson, Asia Pacific chief executive of Cushman & Wakefield.

'Shanghai has the potential to be the New York of Asia,' says Thompson, who adds that the catalyst for such growth would be further substantial deregulation of the Chinese financial services sector, including eventual full convertibility of the renminbi.

His bullish view of the market is echoed by most real estate professionals in the financial capital – and by Mori, who last week predicted that demand for Shanghai office space would remain strong, even though some prospective tenants have financial problems.

Financial Times, Daily Telegraph