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Investors see new opportunities as integrated trend furthers in GBA: InvestHK officer

“When we promote the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) to the international audience, talking about the 86 million people and its 2-trillion-RMB annual increase of GDP, all of their eyes are just brightened up,” said David Wong, Head of Greater Bay Area Business Development of Invest Hong Kong, at the recent Bridges Global Chats held by GDToday. 

According to Wong, a comprehensive set of work forces has been formed between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao to promote the Area overseas, presenting opportunities in such fields as investment, infrastructure, education, social services and financial services.

I&T, Shenzhen-Hong Kong cooperation highlighted in GBA development

“We see there are two very important areas that international companies are interested in. One is the innovation and technology (I&T) which is the main driving engine of the development of GBA while the other is the Hong Kong collaboration with Shenzhen,” said Wong. 

He highlighted Hong?Kong-Shenzhen?Innovation?and?Technology?Park which is located in between Hong Kong and Shenzhen and will be opened in 2 years, saying, “It will be an area where the R&D elements of two cities will work together.” 

Attributed to the increasingly sophisticated transport network and integrated facilities, Wong said there are more international companies using Hong Kong as a springboard to expand their mainland market.

“A Singaporean life science research company landed their bases for R&D on cancer drugs in Hong Kong. It then partnered with Shenzhen on R&D while settling sales and marketing in Shenzhen as well,” Wong introduced.

Apart from technological cooperation, Wong said the infrastructure construction in the GBA also benefits the food sector. “A company called Paul Lafayet settled its central kitchen in Hong Kong making French cookies and macarons. They can now ship their products to Shenzhen and Macao every day thanks to the world-class infrastructure such as the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge.”

As for the financial sector, Wong highlighted that a wide range of financial connection schemes between mainland and Hong Kong including the stock connect, bond connect and wealth management connect presents enormous business opportunities. “The Standard Chartered Bank now has 90 branches in the GBA alone because they see the potential.”

Future chance to seize in Hong Kong as GBA develops

According to the 14th Five-Year Plan, China will continue to support Hong Kong to be an international financial, transportation and trade center; a global offshore Renminbi business hub, an international asset management center and a risk management center; an international legal and arbitration center; high-end and high value-added service center.

Apart from the four traditional roles, Wong pointed out that there are emerging areas that are involved in the country’s five-year plan for the first time and considered they will bring new opportunities to international investors.

“Hong Kong has put forward a series of initiatives to boost the development of I&T while it is collaborating closely with other cities in the GBA in the aviation sector. The air traffic handling volume of the Area is expected to increase greatly in the not-too-distant future,” said Wong.

In addition, Hong Kong is encouraged to develop into a regional intellectual property trading center. Wong believes that it will be an area where Hong Kong will excel in due to the tradition of its common law system.

Last but not least, Hong Kong is planned to be a hub for arts and cultural exchanges between China and the rest of the world. “Hong Kong is building the West Kowloon Cultural District where the M+ Museum features modern arts and the Palace Museum recently opened in July. It created lots of business opportunities, especially for art collecting and trading,” he said.

Reported by Jasmine, Hannah

Edited by Wing, Jerry

Axin also contributed to the video

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