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Chatting with Indonesian domestic helpers

Three weeks ago, I made an official visit to Indonesia. During the trip, I met with the country’s President, Vice President, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs to discuss further trade and business co-operation between the two places and confirm the establishment of a Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (ETO) in Jakarta, the Special Administrative Region Government’s 12th overseas ETO. Indonesia makes up 40 per cent of the gross domestic product of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, which has overtaken the European Union and the United States to become our second largest trade partner. There is huge potential for trade and business co-operation between Hong Kong and Indonesia.

Trade and business aside, there are about 150 000 Indonesian domestic helpers working for Hong Kong’s families. They are a major link between the two places.

Sunday is the day off for most Indonesian domestic helpers. This morning (October 11), I went to one of their popular gathering places in Causeway Bay to chat with some of them about their work and daily life here, and thanked them for their hard work and contributions to Hong Kong. I told them that Hong Kong is a society that encourages social integration, and that I hope they will enjoy their stay here.

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October 11, 2015