Hong Kong recently hosted the 26th Beijing-Hong Kong Economic Cooperation Symposium, bringing together political and business leaders from Beijing and Hong Kong to further explore exchanges and cooperation between the two places.
The Beijing Municipal Government, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and several Hong Kong chambers of commerce organised the Symposium. Themed Deepening Cooperation for a Win-win Future, the Symposium included a number of seminars covering key topics, such as innovation and technology, financial services and intellectual property.
The opening ceremony was addressed by Dr Peter KN Lam, Chairman of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, as well as John Lee, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR and Yin Yong, the Mayor of Beijing.
Mainland officials stationed in Hong Kong also attended the event, including Yin Zonghua, Deputy Director of the Liaison Office of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and Li Yongsheng, Acting Commissioner of the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Hong Kong. Beijing Vice Mayor Sima Hong, Beijing Secretary-General Mu Peng and other officials also attended.
Mr Lee said support from Mainland China and links to the world at large under one country, two systems gave Hong Kong unique advantages. The city was actively integrated into the overall development of the mainland, which made good use of Hong Kong’s status as an international financial, shipping and trade centre to contribute to the country's high-quality development.
Dr Lam said: “Beijing and Hong Kong are important parts of the national development strategy. Under the guidance of central policies, they can give full play to their strengths, complement each other's advantages and create prosperity together.” Innovation, technology, finance, medical health, intellectual property and other fields had massive and far-reaching potential for cooperation.
Services accounted for more than 80% of Beijing's GDP, the HKTDC's Research Department noted. Financial services, information technology services, and scientific research and technical services were the three major sectors.
In 2019, financial services accounted for 18.5% of GDP, IT services 13.5% and research 8%. In terms of the development of high-tech industries, Beijing's research and experimental development funding reached CNY223.4 billion (US$31.3 billion) in 2019, accounting for 6.3% of GDP.
An investment consultation and negotiation session showcased results of cooperation projects between Beijing and Hong Kong and discussed mutual industrial advantages, while promoting exchanges between the two cities.
Content-rich thematic seminars covered coordinated development and advances in health as well as intellectual property and the innovation ecosystem.In addition, the Hong Kong SAR Government delegation and the Beijing delegation held the fifth Beijing-Hong Kong Cooperation Conference in Hong Kong. On this occasion, Beijing and Hong Kong agreed to carry out pragmatic cooperation in 11 key areas, including service industries, technological innovation and education.