Hong Kong is energized by the new growth momentum unleashed by the national development blueprint, maintaining its allure to international talent, Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said on Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters before the weekly Executive Council meeting, Lam responded to questions from China Daily about recent local and overseas comments that Hong Kong's allure to international companies was weakened by the city's political environment and COVID-19 restrictions.
The latest government data shows Hong Kong is home to 9,000 mainland and overseas companies and serves as the regional headquarters and regional offices for most of them, said Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor
In a survey of 325 member companies of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, 42 percent of respondents reported being inclined to leave the city, citing “discomfort” with the National Security Law for Hong Kong enacted in June last year.
But Lam said that the business investment in Hong Kong-based companies and the number of companies aspiring to come to Hong Kong are better indicators of the city’s overall business landscape than a specific survey of individual sentiments.
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The latest government data shows Hong Kong is home to 9,000 mainland and overseas companies and serves as the regional headquarters and regional offices for most of them, said Lam. Far from seeing any significant capital outflow, Hong Kong securities markets are performing well and the banking sector remains stable, she said.
She also said that during her interactions with the business community in the past two months, she has been told that the sector’s initial concern about national security legislation has subsided and has been replaced by keen interest in the opportunities within the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and under the nation’s 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25).
“What more favorable policies will be coming from the central government in order to facilitate the free flow of goods, capital, people, data between Hong Kong and the Great Bay Area mainland cities? These are the general sentiments that we have received from the business community at large,” said Lam.
She also noted that Hong Kong has started to enjoy the new strengths as an international hub for art and cultural exchange under the 14th Five-Year Plan. For example, galleries have reported strong sales at the Art Basel in Hong Kong 2021 exhibition, which was held May 19-23.
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