The third Joint Conference on Advancing Hong Kong’s Full Participation in and Contribution to the Belt and Road Initiative (B&RI) was held virtually on 28 August 2020. It was participated by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and relevant Mainland ministries.
The meeting reviewed the work of Hong Kong in taking forward the B&RI after the second Joint Conference and discussed new initiatives for the coming year in areas such as innovation and technology (I&T), professional services and capacity building, including collaborating in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic and thereby fostering people-to-people bonds, as well as promoting further collaboration between Mainland enterprises and Hong Kong professionals.
HKSAR Government Financial Secretary, Paul Chan said that Hong Kong will leverage its position as an international financial centre to contribute to the strategic development of the country. Hong Kong will continue to make the best use of its strengths as an offshore Renminbi (RMB) centre to further enhance RMB liquidity and to support and drive the use of RMB by businesses and investors in the financing of infrastructure projects and other related activities in the Belt and Road region. Hong Kong will also pursue the securitisation of infrastructure loans in order to facilitate private capital flow into mature and well-functioning infrastructure projects with stable cash flow.
Chan also expressed heartfelt gratitude for the Central Government’s full support in Hong Kong’s anti-epidemic work and the provision of manpower and resources in helping Hong Kong to fight against the epidemic, including in the building of a ‘mobile cabin hospital’ and a temporary hospital for patients, as well as the conducting of large-scale COVID-19 universal community testing. These measures could help Hong Kong to control the epidemic as soon as possible.
The HKSAR Government will continue to take earnest efforts to promote partnership between professional service providers in Hong Kong and Mainland enterprises with regard to Belt and Road projects. Such efforts include the launching of a Mainland Enterprises Partnership Networking and Exchange Programme, in which exchanges and networking sessions will be set up for Mainland businesses and Hong Kong professionals for forging collaboration.
The HKSAR Government also reported on the progress made in other areas of work in advancing Hong Kong’s participation in and contribution to the B&RI. As a facilitator and a promoter for the B&RI, the HKSAR Government will continue related work in the future, including a planning for the second edition delegation of the Belt and Road Joint Conference Policy Exchanges and Capacity Building Programme within a year, continuing with the Green Bond Grant Scheme, and promoting the Legal Hub project and its measures to enhance Hong Kong’s status as a leading centre for international legal and dispute resolution services. — Construction+ Online