People gather to watch the sunset as they stand on a viewing platform in Tamar Park overlooking Victoria Harbour and the Kowloon skyline in Hong Kong on May 5, 2020. (ANTHONY WALLACE / AFP)
HONG KONG - Hong Kong officials and thought leaders vowed to actively grab the fresh opportunities coming with the nation’s 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25), in order to ensure the city plays a prominent role in the country’s new development landscape.
The pledges fit with Vice-Premier Han Zheng’s call for Hong Kong to better position itself in the country’s future growth, which he expressed during a meeting with Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor in Beijing on Friday.
In a recent interview with China News Service, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said the country’s latest development plan will bring Hong Kong new hopes in expanding its domestic and overseas markets, as well as boosting the innovation and technology industry.
Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said the country’s latest development plan will bring Hong Kong new hopes in expanding its domestic and overseas markets, as well as boosting the innovation and technology industry
Amid a volatile international situation and a raging global pandemic, Hong Kong needs to adjust its strategy to better align with the country’s development plans, Chan said.
Separately, Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah wrote in her blog on Saturday that the Department of Justice is “determined” to capitalize on the opportunities brought by the nation’s development and will actively participate in the 14th Five-Year Plan.
In line with this goal, the department will spare no effort in promoting “LawTech” in the legal, deal-making and dispute resolution sector, Cheng wrote.
Local scholars also offered their suggestions for Hong Kong’s further integration into national development.
Tang Benzhong, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Hong Kong, said in a recent interview with Wen Wei Po that Hong Kong’s science sector was greatly inspired by the 14th Five-year Plan.
The plan has attached unprecedented importance to technology innovation, and proposed for the first time to develop the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area into an international scientific and technological innovation center, on a par with Beijing and Shanghai, Tang noted.
He urged authorities to further reduce institutional obstacles hindering cross-boundary collaboration in the Bay Area in order to accelerate Hong Kong’s integration into the 11-city cluster.
In a written reply to the media on Friday, local political scholar Lau Siu-kai said he believes the central government will make every effort to facilitate and guide Hong Kong to integrate into national development, such as in taking advantage of the domestic market to promote local industrial transformation.
Lau, who is also the vice-president of the Chinese Association of Hong Kong and Macao Studies, encouraged Hong Kong to actively respond to the initiative with deeper connection with the mainland in political, institutional, legal and professional service areas.
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