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Positioning future direction of Hong Kong in overall national development, says HKSAR government official

09/17/2021 Source: Xinhuanet.com

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Hong Kong should take the initiative to integrate itself into the overall development of the country and chart a new course of development while consolidating and strengthening its existing advantages, an official of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government said.

"When talking about the direction of Hong Kong's future development, we should put it in the context of the overall development of the country," Edward Yau, secretary for commerce and economic development of the HKSAR government, told reporters in an interview.

"The 14th Five-Year Plan is a 'milestone' in China's development," Yau said, stressing that China's development has ushered in a new page, and new requirements have been put forward for Hong Kong's development as well.

The 14th Five-Year Plan for national socio-economic development calls for accelerating the establishment of a new development pattern featuring "dual circulation," which takes the domestic market as the mainstay while enabling domestic and foreign markets to interact positively with each other, he said.

Hong Kong is a city in China, and because of the unique status conferred upon by the "one country, two systems," it can play a bigger role in helping the mainland open wider to the outside world, Yau noted.

Over the past four decades, the reform and opening-up policy has greatly enhanced China's economic strength, and Hong Kong has both contributed to and benefited from this process, he said, adding that China will open its door even wider to the outside world and Hong Kong will play an increasingly important role in it.

In the eyes of Yau, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is an important stage where Hong Kong can showcase its strengths to help mainland enterprises go global. "When our country put forward the BRI, Hong Kong was already well positioned to play its role as an important node of the initiative," he said.

The sixth Belt and Road Summit, jointly organized by the HKSAR government and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council under the theme of "Driving Growth through Fostering Regional and International Trade," has attracted together more than 6,000 government officials, entrepreneurs and business leaders from over 80 countries and regions in early September.

Noting that the core principles of the BRI are based on five cooperation dimensions -- policy, infrastructure, trade, capital, and people-to-people bonds, Yau said that as Hong Kong has its advantages in both policy and talents it can do a lot in this regard, such as providing financing and professional services for multinational large-scale infrastructure projects.

"While actively promoting the signing of free trade agreements with other economies, the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau of the HKSAR government will continue to allocate resources to help Hong Kong's small- and medium-sized enterprises transform and upgrade," he added.

The 14th Five-Year Plan intensifies the support for Hong Kong to develop into a regional intellectual property trading center, Yau said.

In June, Hong Kong approved its first-ever standard patent under the original grant patent system aimed at encouraging original patents, which is a new starting point for intellectual property registration.

Yau believes innovation enterprises in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, especially in Shenzhen, attach great importance to science and technology and patents, and hope to have legal protection.

"Hong Kong is well placed to make good use of professional services such as registration, testing and certification and legal services to serve the country," he noted.

"Hong Kong's destiny is closely linked with national development. Hong Kong should make full use of the advantages of 'one country, two systems,' live up to the country's trust, give full play to its strengths, and work with the mainland for mutual benefit and win-win outcomes," he said.