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Ample opportunities for young engineers

This morning, I attended a seminar on the Belt and Road organised by the Hong Kong Institution of Engineers.

At the seminar, I pointed out that since putting forward the Belt and Road Initiative, the country sees Hong Kong as a key link for the region, and therefore the Initiative holds long-term and boundless promise for the engineering profession in Hong Kong.

The Belt and Road Initiative is one of the most ambitious projects in the 21st century, embracing more than 60 countries on three continents, covering 4.4 billion people, and accounting for about 30 per cent of global economic value. One of the key areas of the Initiative is infrastructure. Fund-raising for some Belt and Road projects will even be done in Hong Kong.

To help our professionals give full play to their strengths in the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, I announced in last year's Policy Address the allocation of $200 million to support the professional services sector in enhancing exchanges and co-operation with the Belt and Road countries and other regions outside Hong Kong (including Mainland China), and promote related publicity activities. I encourage the professional sector to make good use of the opportunity.

In the Hong Kong and Macao section of the government work report delivered last month, the Premier of the State Council, Mr Li Keqiang, said, "We will draw up a plan for the development of a city cluster in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, give full play to the distinctive strengths of Hong Kong and Macao, and elevate their positions and roles in China's economic development and opening up." This region, at the southern tip of China, is a strategic point of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. The Bay Area development plan presents ample opportunities for Hong Kong and various cities in Guangdong to work together to explore overseas markets. One area of collaboration is infrastructure, with Guangdong providing the construction works and Hong Kong the professional services, including contract negotiation, contract management, project management and facilities management.

Hong Kong is a stage for engineers to showcase their capabilities. With the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative and the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Bay Area, this stage will continue to expand and grow, providing unprecedented career development opportunities for the next generation of engineers.

April 7, 2017