Hong Kong holds spring reception in Tokyo (with photos)

     Some 500 guests attended the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (Tokyo)'s spring reception in Tokyo, Japan today (February 9) to celebrate the Year of the Dragon.

     The spring reception also marked the beginning of a series of activities in Japan to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

     Speaking to the guests, who came mainly from the political and business sectors, academia and the community, the Principal Hong Kong Economic and Trade Representative (Tokyo), Ms Sally Wong, said Hong Kong and Japan had maintained a mature and stable relationship through the years.

     "Japan is our third largest trading partner. The bilateral trade between the two places increased by four per cent in 2011 despite the difficulties and challenges Japan has faced following the earthquake in March," she said.

     Looking ahead, Ms Wong pointed out there was abundant room for the Government and private sectors of the two places to further enhance ties, co-operation and partnership in areas including economy, trade and culture.

     Citing the unique benefits Hong Kong enjoys under the "One Country, Two Systems" arrangement and its role as China's global financial centre and offshore Renminbi business centre, she encouraged Japanese companies to explore how they can make use of such advantages in developing their businesses.  

     "We are also exploring ways to diversify our economic base and promoting economic growth. Strategies include continuing to develop the six industries in which Hong Kong enjoys clear advantages - medical services, testing and certification, education services, innovation and technology, creative and cultural industries and 'green' industries.

     "Hong Kong has also adopted a strategy of promoting growth through infrastructural development, including the 10 major infrastructure projects.

     "Japan is renowned for its expertise and experience in many of these areas. I believe there are ample opportunities for Japanese entrepreneurs to captialise on the development of these industries," Ms Wong said.

     She also looked forward to more dialogue and collaboration between the two places at both government and community levels through the various activities to be organised by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office this year.

Ends/Thursday, February 9, 2012
Issued at HKT 20:33