Chief Executive Carrie Lam has postponed this year’s Policy Address, to enable her to include policies that the Central Government has drawn up to support the development of Hong Kong.
As this year marks the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, President Xi Jinping has called for further deepening the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA). I urge the SAR Government to “walk the talk” by implementing concrete measures, to get in line with the national development plans. This will help to drive Hong Kong’s economic recovery, and ride out the current storm as well as improve people’s livelihoods.
As Hong Kong continues to suffer from the impact of the pandemic, the SAR Government should provide appropriate assistance to various sectors in order to support enterprises, safeguard jobs and help the unemployed. There is also a pressing need to formulate plans for economic recovery by adopting different counter-cyclical measures to boost the economy.
As an international financial centre, Hong Kong has a legal system on par with international standards and an extensive global business network. The Administration should seek support from the Central Government to further assist Hong Kong’s financial, engineering, construction, healthcare, legal, accounting and other professions to expand their business into the GBA, to promote a new business model that attracts capital, talent and technology from around the world.
Hong Kong should also complement the national 14th Five-Year Plan and take part in the domestic circular market to give full play to our unique advantages, and in the hope of opening up a new wave of innovation and entrepreneurship.
To this end, I urge the SAR Government to set up a fund to enhance support for local SMEs and professionals to develop and start a business in the GBA, to dovetail with the 14th Five-Year Plan.
Measures to attract young professionals from various fields in Hong Kong should also be formulated in the GBA as soon as possible to enrich the talent pool. There should be a talent programme in place for professional services jobs in short supply in the GBA. Mutual recognition of professional qualifications should be explored with Guangdong to help Hong Kong youth tap GBA opportunities.
As the saying goes, “a minute on stage takes ten years of hard work off stage.” The launch of any cross-border policy is a result of ongoing consultation and collaboration among government departments and relevant industries in both locations. I hope the Chief Executive’s upcoming Policy Address will focus on fully preparing Hong Kong for integration into the overall national development plan.