Chairman's Desk
An Extraordinary Two Years

After two years at the helm, I will hand on the baton as Chamber Chairman this month. It has been a huge privilege to serve the business community throughout this exceptionally difficult period.

A number of Chamber events which I attended perhaps encapsulate our key functions in support of Hong Kong’s businesses – our policy work, and our wide variety of events.

In April, the members of the Chamber’s Election Committee and I met the Chief Executive candidate John Lee. We had a frank discussion about the concerns of businesses amid the ongoing Covid restrictions, as well as the longer-term outlook for the city. 

As the “voice of business” in Hong Kong, the Chamber regularly shares suggestions and insights with the Government. Our policy successes since the pandemic include advocating for the third tranche of the Employment Support Scheme and enhancements to the loan guarantee programmes for SMEs, which together have enabled many businesses survive. 

Also last month, I was delighted to welcome new members to the Chamber at an e-networking session, along with a number of our Committee Chairmen. In the past, we held cocktail receptions for new joiners: the format may have changed, but there was no doubting the enthusiasm of all participants in our online event to work together for the whole business community.  

Amid fluctuating restrictions, the Chamber has continued its busy programme of events to keep members up to date with industry developments and new opportunities. Last year, we also celebrated HKGCC’s 160th anniversary, and hosted a Charity Golf Tournament that raised HK$300,000 for children in need. 

For the past two years, the pandemic has undoubtedly been the dominant theme. To help the city get back to normality, the Chamber organized the “Hong Kong We Can Do It! Lucky Draw” to encourage vaccination, with prizes worth more than HK$43 million. An extra 2.6 million people got their shots during the course of the draws. 

Hong Kong kept the virus at bay until the emergence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant. The strict policies undoubtedly helped to save many lives, but as the rest of the world opens up, and with 93% of Hong Kong people having had at least one vaccine shot, I hope that the remaining restrictions will be eased so businesses can truly get back to normal. 

As I step down, I would like to express my gratitude to all Chamber members for your support. In particular, my thanks go to Deputy Chairman Leland Sun and Vice Chairmen Oscar Chow, Victor Li and Douglas Woo, LegCo Representative Jeffrey Lam, General Committee members, as well as the Chairmen and members of our committees. I’d also like to thank the Secretariat, including CEO George Leung, for their unstinting efforts to maintain the Chamber’s services despite the Covid constraints. 

The next Chairman, to be elected at our AGM this month, will face serious challenges but I have every confidence that he or she will steer the business community of Hong Kong towards a brighter future.

Peter Wong


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