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Hong Kong is a springboard for UK companies to reach the key markets of East Asia, says Director General of HKETO London (with photos)

     "Hong Kong is in a unique position to act as a springboard for UK businesses to easily reach the key markets in East Asia," said Mrs Agnes Allcock, Director-General of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, London (ETO) to over 170 guests on September 12 at the Seminar on Business Opportunities in East Asia jointly organised by the ETO and the Worshipful Company of World Traders for UK businesses at the Royal Society in London.

     Speakers at the event spoke in detail about the business opportunities available to UK companies in China, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea. Mentioning Hong Kong's excellent location for reaching those markets, Mrs Allcock said "Hong Kong is just four hours flying time from each of the key centres in the region, and five hours flying time from half the world's population." She added that Hong Kong's business-friendly environment, independent judiciary, simple and low tax system, and high level of autonomy through the principle of "One Country, Two Systems" made Hong Kong an ideal gateway to East Asia for UK businesses.

     The seminar was opened by joint host Miss Mei Sim Lai, Master of the Worshipful Company of World Traders. Guest of Honour Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP, Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the UK, underlined the UK Government's continued support for increased trade with the East Asian region during his concluding remarks. The key speakers at the seminar were: Mr Yung Ha Park, Director General of the Korea Trade and Investment Promotion Agency, who talked about business opportunities in Korea; Mr David Cairns, Estates and Security Directorate Officer at the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and former Director of UK Trade and Investment in Japan, who spoke about opportunities in Japan; Mr David Marsden, Director, UK Benelux and Ireland, Hong Kong Trade and Development Council, who spoke on opportunities in China; and Mr Charles Ng, Associate Director-General, InvestHK, who spoke about the opportunities in Hong Kong.

     The event also included a musical performance by two talented musicians living in the UK: renowned British violinist Sebastian See-Schierenberg and Ramón Ruiz, one of the UK's leading Flamenco guitarists.

     At the end of the seminar, Mrs Allcock encouraged UK companies to take advantage of the business opportunities in China, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea and emphasised that this was a "win-win situation for all of our economies". She added that thanks to long-standing and historical links, Hong Kong and the UK shared the same core values, spoke the same language, and shared a host of business and personal ties. That is the reason why Hong Kong can call itself a gateway for UK companies to East Asia and Mainland China.

     The Seminar was supported by the All-Party Parliamentary China Group, the All-Party Parliamentary Group for East Asian Business, the China-Britain Business Council, the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the UK, the Embassy of Japan in the UK, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the UK, the Hong Kong Association, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, the Japan Society, and the UK Trade and Investment.

Ends/Friday, September 14, 2012
Issued at HKT 02:42


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