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Going out of Hong Kong to seize development opportunities

This morning, I witnessed the signing of the Agreement between the Mainland and Hong Kong on Achieving Basic Liberalization of Trade in Services in Guangdong under the framework of CEPA.

Hong Kong is a small place with a large population, and relies heavily on imports for its daily necessities. To achieve economic development, we need to look beyond Hong Kong and have the determination and capability to go and seize opportunities outside the territory. Guangdong is one of our major trading partners, and has close economic ties and a mutually beneficial relationship with Hong Kong. As over 90 per cent of our GDP comes from our services sector, the Agreement has great significance for the economic development of Hong Kong and the career development of Hong Kong people, including the young.

Over the past 11 years since the signing of CEPA in 2003, the Mainland and Hong Kong have continuously deepened and broadened the relevant arrangements. I have participated in the process in various capacities. Today, I am glad to see Guangdong and Hong Kong enter into the Agreement.

The Agreement signed today, in the form of a negative list, offers Hong Kong people or companies preferential treatment in accessing the Guangdong market in 153 services trade sub-sectors, including legal, accounting, insurance, securities and banking, and also simplifies the approval process. This will greatly facilitate the development of the relevant sub-sectors in Hong Kong, and I hope that they will fully capitalise on these opportunities.

Photo   Photo

December 18, 2014