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Hong Kong: Now is the time (with photos)

     More than 300 Canadian business people were told today (May 30, Calgary Time) at the national business forum of the Hong Kong-Canada Business Association (HKCBA) in Calgary that if they want to ride the wave of opportunity in China, now is the time to strengthen links with Hong Kong.

     The annual forum was organised by the eight sections of the HKCBA, with delegates from Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax.

     The full-day forum included presentations by government officials including Director of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (HKETO) in Canada, Ms Maureen Siu, and Canadian Consul General from Hong Kong, Ms Doreen Steidle, as well as Canadian and Hong Kong trade experts. Topics covered ranged from trends in finance and investing, the Hong Kong advantage and emerging business opportunities to green tech, business culture and the global supply chain.

     In her opening remarks, Ms Siu described Hong Kong as "the premier international gateway to Mainland China and the best platform to the Asian market." Ms Siu said, "In this new economic order, Hong Kong, as the freest economy in the world, continues to have an important role to play in promoting ties between Canada and the Mainland of China."

     Deputy Director of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, Miss Margaret Fong, said in her keynote presentation, entitled "Hong Kong: Now is the time", that to move beyond Canada's dependence on trade with the United States, Canadian exports to Asia - especially to the mainland - were rising. "But I'm here to tell you that Hong Kong can make it happen faster," she said.

     One of the reasons she cited was the recent announcement of China's 12th Five-Year Plan, which confirmed Hong Kong's role as China's international centre of logistics and finance. "Hong Kong is where Chinese companies go out to the world, where foreign capital and exporters look for mainland market opportunities," she said.

     She also encouraged Canadian businesses to explore opportunities in China's technology sector, especially in green tech. "According to a recent UN (United Nations) report, it will need more than 60 specialised technologies to contain pollution and achieve real energy saving," she added.

     Miss Fong also invited people in Canada's financial sector to take part in the 5th Asian Financial Forum to be held in Hong Kong in January 2012 to hear from "top financial minds in the Mainland and around the world on the macroeconomic landscape, on opportunities in the Asian region, and on where the renminbi is going."

Ends/Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Issued at HKT 12:53


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