Political will enabled the development to happen, but
sheer human effort saw it created in so short a time.
And still the building goes on, with plans for new
roads and railways, underground lines and an elevated train link to the
As China's move to a market economy gathers pace,
spurred by the country's acceptance into the World Trade Organisation,
it has big plans for Shanghai.
It wants to see this teeming city of 17 million
people once more become Asia's commercial centre.
British businessman Lance Browne has watched the city
"If somebody had said that Shanghai was going to
be like this in 20 years' time they'd have got the doctor," he
"The changes are extraordinary and the thing is
the pace is increasing, going faster and faster, more and more changes
all the time.
"And now, with China entering the WTO, that is
going to hot up even further."
Driving in from the sparkling new international
airport, you'll pass hundreds of cranes.
At its peak, half the world's high-rise cranes were
said to be here, on the planet's biggest building site, constructing the
apartment blocks, offices and public buildings that make up Pudong.
It is also home to the Jinmao Tower, part commercial,
part hotel and, at 420 metres, one of the world's tallest buildings. An
even bigger one is planned.
US ECONOMY SEES PATCHY GROWTH
Economic growth in the US has been "slow and
uneven" in recent weeks according to the latest study of conditions
by the US Federal Reserve.
The Fed's 'Beige Book', so-called because of the
colour of its cover, found a mixed performance among retailers and
"sluggish" activity in the manufacturing sector.
The survey provides an anecdotal picture of the US
economy and will be used by the Fed when it meets on 24 September to
discuss interest rates.
Analysts said the findings meant the Fed is unlikely
to cut interest rates from their current level of 1.75%.
Some observers had speculated that the Fed may cut
rates to prevent the economy slipping into recession again — the
so-called 'double-dip' scenario.
The Beige Book gathers together information from the
12 regional Fed bank districts.
"Most districts indicated slow and uneven
economic growth, with mixed or scattered experiences across sectors of
the economy," the Fed said.
Car sales were higher, but this was mainly due to
aggressive incentive schemes being operated by the manufacturers.
Overall, retailers in different districts have had
contrasting fortunes, but the Fed said they were "cautiously
optimistic" about the coming months, "expecting sales to be
flat or slightly up from their 2001 levels".
But the survey found that manufacturers were still
having a tough time.
"On the whole, manufacturing activity was
sluggish, with a good deal of variation by industry and region,"
the Fed said.
Most the districts also found little or no growth in
US REMEMBERS SEPT 11 VICTIMS
Sad and tearful, the United States remembered on
Wednesday the victims of the Sept 11 terrorist attacks as people across
the country marked the solemn occasion with a moment of silence.
In Washington, President George W. Bush joined senior
members of his cabinet in observing a moment of silence at the south
lawn of the White House.
About 12,000 people gathered at the Pentagon where
189 people were killed this day last year in the attack.
Bush, echoing another president confronted with
horrific loss of life, said those killed in the Sept 11, 2001, terror
attacks "did not die in vain."
"The murder of innocents cannot be explained,
only endured," he said. "And though they died in tragedy, they
did not die in vain."
JAPAN'S GROWTH PICKS UP
Japan's economy grew by more than originally thought
during the three months of April, May and June, the Cabinet Office said.
It revised its estimate of economic growth to 0.6%,
up from an initial forecast of 0.5% issued late last month.
The improvement was due to Japanese firms' increasing
their capital spending and their stockpiles, as orders have picked up.
The news is a boost for Japan's leaders as they put
together a package of measures to tackle falling prices which have
contributed to Japan's economic stagnation.
Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi is expected to
unveil his proposals on 20 September.
Japan's benchmark Nikkei stock index fell to 19 year
lows in early September.
The Nikkei's drop below the 9,000 level contributed
to pressure for the government to produce an economic revival package to
restore the stock market's performance.
US ECONOMY TRAPPED IN TRADE GAP
The United States has reported its second-largest
trade deficit on record.
During June, the trade gap narrowed only slightly, as
demand for imports reached its highest level for 15 months.
The US Commerce Department said June's trade deficit
came in at $37.2bn (£24.4bn), compared with May's record deficit of
Imports of goods and services increased by 0.5% to
$119.2bn, as imports of consumer goods, such as clothing and electrical
goods, reached a record high of $26.2bn.
US exports grew by 1.7% to $82bn, helped by increased
sales of agricultural products.
The biggest trade gap was recorded with China, where
a deficit of $8.5bn emerged, even though US exports to China climbed to
a record $2.2bn.
CHANGE FOR EURO INTEREST RATES
Interest rates across the 12-nation Eurozone are
staying at 3.25% for the 11th month in a row.
The decision from the European Central Bank,
announced on Thursday at the first policy meeting following the
month-long summer break, is in line with expectations.
The Bank has yet to comment on its reasons, but the
standstill is in line with recent comments from its president, Wim
Duisenberg, that inflation remains too high in many Eurozone countries.
The ECB's rules, not to mention its own preference,
focus on inflation over and above economic growth and employment, which
are feeble across most of the zone.
PRICES SLIDE AS CHINA'S WORKERS CUT BACK
Growing joblessness and the fear of insecurity is
pushing the Chinese to save rather than spending, a trait that risks
pushing the country into deflation.
The latest evidence of the trend — especially
worrying because of nieghbouring Japan's decade-long deflationary spiral
— came on Friday with official statistics showing prices fell 0.7% in
The decline was slower than in July, when prices fell
GREENSPAN WARNS BUSH OVER SPENDING
Alan Greenspan has warned lawmakers that their
inability to balance the federal budget threatens the country's economic
Mr Greenspan, chairman of the US Federal Reserve,
urged Congress and the administration of President George W Bush to
restrain the desire to cut taxes while raising levels of public
Failure to preserve rules which rescued the US from
its last period of deficits would be a "grave mistake", Mr
TRIPLE WHAMMY HITS SHARE PRICES
A triple whammy of concerns over the US economy,
fears of conflict with Iraq and higher US unemployment has sent shares
In Europe, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index closed
down 125 points with French and German shares also showing sharp losses.
And in the US, the Dow Jones industrial average
closed 201 points lower.
Stocks under pressure in New York included shares in
fast-food giant McDonalds, which fell 4.8% after a warning from analysts
at Goldman Sachs of uncertainties over the firm's future.
In London, losers included BAE Systems shares, which
slumped 14% after a disappointing profits announcement.
Earlier, the key Tokyo index, the Nikkei 22, ended
15.15 points higher at 9,415.23.
SOUTH AFRICA RAISES INTEREST RATES
Central bank chiefs, faced with stubbornly high
inflation, have raised South African interest rates for the fourth time
The country's Reserve Bank has raised rates by one
percentage point to 13.5%.
The move, which takes the rise in South African rates
this year to four percentage points, followed data showing that prices
have continued to soar.
The country's inflation index rose in July at an
annual rate of 9.9%, the biggest on record, and well outside the 3-6%
range set for the Reserve Bank.
ECUADOR 'MUST WAIT' FOR IMF CASH
Mixed messages are clouding Ecuador's hopes of
winning fresh assistance from the International Monetary Fund, with
presidential elections just weeks away.
The country's finance minister, Francisco Arosemana,
is heading for Washington DC on Friday to present a letter of intent
containing the commitments which he hopes will sway the IMF into
granting $240m in new loans.
Australia has reported an unexpected fall in jobs
during July, which economists said reflected uncertainty over the global
Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics
showed total employment fell by 28,000 in July, against economists'
expectations of a rise of 10,000.
AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY GOES DOWNHILL
Australia's previously impressive rate of economic
growth has slowed for the third consecutive quarter.
Despite the diminishing strength, the economy still
managed to expand by 0.6% compared with the previous three months and by
3.8% compared with the same months a year earlier.
Treasurer Peter Costello blamed the slowdown which
was worse than expected — on falling stock markets and the worsening
FED MAN TELLS BOSSES TO CUT PAY
One of the US Federal Reserve's most senior officials
has warned America's executives that their immense pay packets are
bloated and quite possible immoral.
WIlliam McDonough, president of the Federal Reserve
Bank of New York, used the opportunity of an 11 September commemoration
service in the city to hit out at corporate excess.
GERMAN TRADE REVEALS WEAKNESS
Germany's trade surplus was stronger than expected in
July, but the figures painted a picture of a struggling economy.
Both imports and exports fell, but imports fell
faster — a sign that domestic demand was weak.
Exports from Germany, once viewed as Europe's
economic powerhouse, were 0.4% lower than in July 2001, the Federal
Statistics office said.
But imports dropped 6.3% from their level in July
MALI GETS HELP WITH DEBTS
The French president has promised his country will
cancel 40% of the debts owed to it by Mali, one of the world's poorest
countries, his spokesman has said.
President Jacques Chirac made the pledge during a
meeting with Mali's leader, President Amadou Toumani Toure, in Paris.
The bilateral debt cancellation will wipe out about
15% of Mali's total foreign debts.
UK JOBLESS FIGURES IN SURPRISE FALL
The number of people drawing unemployment benefit in
the UK has fallen unexpectedly to a 27-year low.
The Office for National Statistics said the benefit
claimant count fell from 949,400 in July to 943,000 in August, its
lowest level since 1975.
WORLD BANK SUPPORTS AFRICAN PIPELINE
The World Bank is continuing to support a
controversial oil pipeline project between Chad and Cameroon despite
criticism by independent inspectors.
The inspectors claimed the project was harming the
environment and failing to meet some objectives.
But a report defending the Bank's role and rejecting
the inspectors findings will be discussed on Thursday by its
shareholders, including its biggest shareholder — the US.
POSH HOTELIERS RETURN TO SRI LANKA
An operator of hotels for the super rich is reported
to be preparing to invest $750m (£482m) in resorts in southern Sri
Lanka as the prospects for peace improve.
Aman Resorts International scouted locations in Sri
Lankan sites earlier this year and recently bought the rundown New
Oriental Hotel in Galle.
EUROPE'S GROWING PROBLEM
Ministers from 55 countries are meeting in Berlin on
Wednesday to discuss the problems of an ageing population — and
whether we will have to work for longer.
According to the United Nations, ageing is
increasingly becoming one of the most salient social, economic and
demographic phenomena of our times.
In Europe, as in other continents of the world, the
problem will be acute.
It is estimated that by 2050, the number of people
over 60 in Europe will have doubled to 40% of the total population or
60% of the working age population.
US MANUFACTURING REMAINS WEAK
The strength of the recovery in the US economy has
been thrown into doubt by new data which showed that the manufacturing
sector was growing at a sluggish rate.
US investors took fright at the news of the survey,
sending the Dow Jones stock index down more than 350 points, and share
prices tumbling across the world.
BOJ TARGETS DEFLATION
Japan's central bank is ready to consider further
steps to bolster the country's troubled economy, with an inflation
target now a possibility, according to top finance officials.
TURKEY'S ECONOMY BOUNCES BACK
The Turkish economy has rebounded strongly from its
recent crisis, according to the latest growth statistics.
Turkish gross domestic product (GDP) rose by an
annual 8.2% in the second quarter of the year, considerably in excess of
The bounce does much to claw back the heavy output
falls suffered in 2001, when the Turkish economy contracted by 7.4%.
US 'TO PUSH NEW STEEL DEAL'
The United States is reportedly drafting sweeping
proposals to abolish all steel tariffs and subsidies ahead of
international talks on the industry's problems.
The US sparked a trade war when it slapped tariffs of
up to 30% on imported steel in March, a move which European and Asian
steel makers viewed as unjust.