Tickets for the Chamber’s Greater Bay Area Forum last month went like hot cakes, highlighting the business community’s keen interest in the opportunities that the initiative is creating.
As George Leung from HSBC pointed out in his speech at the event, we are all now pretty familiar with the GBA development, and how the 11 cities will leverage their strengths to create an efficient and tech-driven economic area. It is now time to dig deeper into the opportunities that the GBA is creating, particularly on a sectoral level.
Our Chamber missions to the various Mainland cities have been helpful in this regard. We have visited all of the cities at least once since the GBA plan was announced, including districts within the cities, which often have an industry specialization.
The Chamber also welcomes regular visitors from the GBA who are actively seeking cooperation with Hong Kong businesses. For example, we recently received a delegation from Henglan Town in Zhongshan, which is focused on the lighting industry. This sector is now undergoing an upgrading process, and could benefit from the expertise and experience of Hong Kong.
Our world-class healthcare is another area where there is great potential. Besides the demand from the Mainland’s growing middle class, if Hong Kong standards of healthcare were available in GBA cities, it would surely help attract more young families to work across the border and elderly people to consider retiring there.
As the purchasing power of Mainland residents is only set to keep growing, this is creating huge potential for businesses across a wide range of sectors that can tap into their needs. From tourism to wealth management, Hong Kong has the know-how to develop these industries across the whole GBA.
We know that among our members we have a tremendous amount of expertise in the areas that will be critical as the GBA develops. The Chamber can act as a platform to connect you with Mainland businesspeople and officials to explore the opportunities.
For example, the entrepreneurs who spoke at our forum have many years of experience in doing business in the GBA, and they provided very insightful comments and tips on the reality of doing business across the border.
As the Outline Development Plan makes clear, the GBA is a long-term project. But we were impressed with the speed that the “Eight Measures” on specific areas such as tax were announced after the release of the plan. We understand that more policies will be announced soon, and we look forward to working with our members to take advantage of all the latest GBA developments as they emerge.