Asiatic Petroleum Company – Shanghai building , further information

Jennifer Lang:  I just returned from a visit to Shanghai and a look at the many wonderful Bund buildings from the 20th century.

Asiatic Petroleum Company building, The Bund, Shanghai. Date of image unknown.

Here is more detail on the Asiatic building. It was designed by the architectural firm of Moorhead & Halse and built in 1916. The records I accessed show that it was originally called the McBain Building and that it became the offices for the Asiatic Petroleum Company in 1917, and later the East China Petroleum Company occupied the building (in the 1950s) and the China Pacific Insurance Company occupied the building in the 1990s (I believe this company continues to occupy this building today).

The building is seven stories high, and composed with symmetrically designed neoclassical/Barque style primary facades of reinforced concrete. Evidently the building was known as the “No. 1 building on the Bund” (its address), and at its time of construction in 1916 was one of the tallest Bund buildings.


  1. Wang Xuyuan, Shanghai China, “The Bund & Architecture of One Century” China Architecture and Building Press, 2008.
  2. Brochure entitled “Architectures on the Bund,” Prepared by the Shanghai Municipal Tourism Administration, April 2014

This article was first posted on 16th December 2014.

Related Indhhk articles:

  1. Asiatic Petroleum Company employees, a compilation – information needed
  2. Asiatic Petroleum Company, China – family connections
  3. Asiatic Petroleum Company – contemporary photographs of its Shanghai building
  4. Asiatic Petroleum Company staff photo, Shanghai 1930s
  5. Asiatic Petroleum Company Ltd – links to Arnhold & Company
  6. Walter George Babb, Employee of the Asiatic Petroleum Co, UK, 1911 – information wanted
  7. BAAG records of shipping in HK during 1944-45 – the Fukuan Maru, ex-Shu Kwang operated by Asiatic Petroleum Company
  8. Yung Hao tanker – requisitioned by HK Government 1951 leading to China’s requisitioning of Asiatic Petroleum Co
  9. Joe MacDonald – Asiatic Petroleum employee, China/HK late 1930s
  10. Louis Auguste Cossart, Chief Accountant, Asiatic Petroleum (SC) Ltd, Hong Kong
  11. W.H. Bell, General manager of the Asiatic Petroleum (S.C.) Company, covering South China and the Philippine Islands

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