CE meets French Prime Minister in Paris (with photos/videos)

     The Chief Executive, Mrs Carrie Lam, today (June 21, Paris time) met with the French Prime Minister, Mr Edouard Philippe, in Paris. She also addressed a business luncheon and a proptech forum to promote Hong Kong's advantages, and visited facilities of medical technology and start-ups.
     Mrs Lam met with the French Prime Minister, Mr Edouard Philippe, in the afternoon. She said that her week-long visit to France is coming to an end tomorrow and she thanked the French government for all the arrangements. She expressed the hope that the Prime Minister and other French senior government officials will visit Hong Kong in the future to learn about the city’s latest development. She believed that her successful visit will provide a good basis for the Hong Kong-France relationship to scale new heights. In particular, noting that France supports the nation’s Belt and Road Initiative, she looked forward to working with different sectors in France to seize future opportunities.
    Mrs Lam attended various activities before her meeting with Mr Edouard Philippe. In the morning, accompanied by the Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr Nicholas W Yang, Mrs Lam met with the Vice President of the French Parliamentary Office for Evaluation of Scientific and Technological Options and Fields Medalist, Mr Cédric Villani, to learn about the French experience and exchange views on such areas as research and development of artificial intelligence, open data, promotion of STEM education and attracting talent on scientific research.
     Afterwards, Mrs Lam, Mr Yang and the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Edward Yau, went to Institut Pasteur where she, together with the President of Institut Pasteur, Professor Stewart Cole, witnessed the signing of a memorandum between Institut Pasteur, the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation on establishing a research centre for infection, immunology and personalised medicine at the Hong Kong Science Park. Institut Pasteur, which has been collaborating with the HKU, is committed to helping prevent and treat diseases, mainly those of infectious origin, through researches. Mrs Lam said that Hong Kong has clear advantages in healthcare technologies and that collaboration with Institut Pasteur will help both parties boost the relevant development, creating mutual benefits.
     Mrs Lam and the other officials then visited Station F, a business incubator for start-ups. Station F, situated in a former rail freight depot with an area of about 34 000 square metres, is one of the world’s largest start-up facilities. It provides office accommodation for up to 3 000 start-up businesses and famous corporate partners with the whole start-up ecosystem under one roof. Services include training programmes for start-ups, investment as well as provision of meeting facilities and venues for events. Mrs Lam expressed appreciation for the facilities, services and entrepreneurial atmosphere in Station F, and learnt from her exchange with entrepreneurs there that the support from Station F has been excellent. She looked forward to having more such facilities in Hong Kong and in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Bay Area so as to encourage young people to innovate and start their own business.
     In the afternoon, Mrs Lam joined a business luncheon organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and delivered a speech on the past, present and future of the relationship between Hong Kong and France. She noted that the ties between Hong Kong and France have a history of over 100 years. She said that, in addition to meetings with senior government officials, the programme of her week-long visit to France in her capacity as the Chief Executive covers three cities and includes wine-related activities as well as receiving helicopters, proving that the relationship between the two places is multi-faceted. With a strong community of French people and enterprises in Hong Kong, she said she is confident that the close ties between the two places will continue.
     After the luncheon, Mrs Lam attended the MIPIM Proptech Europe 2018 forum and briefed participants on Hong Kong's advantages in innovation and technology. The forum, a two-day event featuring keynote speeches, panel discussions and start-up competitions, focuses on discussion on the application of proptech in different areas of the property sector to enhance efficiency and create value. She expressed the hope that similar proptech seminars will be held in Hong Kong in the future.
     Mrs Lam will continue her last day of visit to France tomorrow (June 22, Paris time).

Ends/Friday, June 22, 2018
Issued at HKT 5:38