In the announcement on Tuesday, which comes during a week-long tour of UK ministers and business to China, led by Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, Aberdeen CEO, Martin Gilbert, said: "UK business cannot ignore the structural development of China. It is already the second largest economy in the world and will sooner or later surpass the US.
“The work undertaken to obtain a wholly foreign-owned enterprise licence is part of our overall strategy to ensure Aberdeen Asset Management is well placed for the next 10 to 20 years.”
Economic secretary to the Treasury, Harriett Baldwin, went even further saying: “The Chancellor and I are in China to deliver on a key part of the government’s economic plan. We want to secure London's future as China's bridge to western financial markets as part of a new golden era of cooperation between our countries.”
While the rise of China is by no means new or, indeed, news, the rhetoric around its rise and its role within global markets has been changing for some time and the broader implications of that change are beginning to become evident as countries and companies jostle for positions both for and against it.
And, judging not only by the comments above but also by its decision to become a founder member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a position the US is none too pleased about, the UK seems determined to get in on the ground floor.
"While the rise of China is by no means new or, indeed, news, the rhetoric around its rise and its role within global markets has been changing for some time."
Such sentiment was reiterated by Osborne who said on Tuesday that Britain and China would “stick together” and, according to the FT, predicted that the Chinese economy would continue to fuel global growth.