Speech by CE at Hong Kong Basic Law Education Association international law conference (English only) (with video)

     â€‹Following is the video speech by the Chief Executive, Mr John Lee, at an international law conference on "one country, two systems" and the Belt and Road Initiative organised by the Hong Kong Basic Law Education Association today (December 3):
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
     Today's conference is a meaningful one on the "one country, two systems" principle, the Belt and Road Initiative and contemporary international law. I would like to start by expressing my gratitude to the Hong Kong Basic Law Education Association, particularly Dr Priscilla Leung, Chair of the Association, for the tireless efforts in promoting the understanding of the Basic Law and the rule of law, which are the bedrock of our society and development.
     This year marks the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland and the implementation of the "one country, two systems" principle. Throughout the past 25 years, Hong Kong has thrived under this innovative principle with great success. As stated by President Xi Jinping in his important speech on July 1, "one country, two systems" is a good policy that must be adhered to in the long run. The President also encouraged Hong Kong to dovetail itself with such national strategies as the National 14th Five-Year Plan and the Belt and Road Initiative.
     Hong Kong has a robust legal system, a solid foundation of the rule of law, and a highly regarded judiciary that exercises its judicial power independently. Without doubt, these factors give Hong Kong a unique edge, allowing us to act as an inter-connecting bridge between our country and the rest of the global community - in law, in business, as well as in other areas of co-operation and collaboration.  
     Launched in 2013, the Belt and Road Initiative is well recognised as one of the largest platforms for international co-operation around the world. It brings about an historic opportunity in our country's development, and Hong Kong endeavours to continue its active role in contributing to collaboration between our country and Belt and Road economies.
     Thanks to the "one country, two systems" principle, Hong Kong has the distinctive advantage of enjoying strong national support while being closely connected with the rest of the world. Proudly, apart from being a leading international financial centre, Hong Kong is also a world-renowned centre for international legal and dispute resolution services.
     We boast a large pool of talents with sophisticated and diversified experience in cross-border deal making and handling international law matters. We also have first-class infrastructure and facilities in international dispute resolution. The International Organization for Mediation Preparatory Office will be set up in Hong Kong to prepare for the Organization's establishment and provision of friendly, flexible, economical and efficient mediation services for international disputes.
     Less than three weeks ago, our Hong Kong Legal Week brought together internationally renowned legal experts and academics from the Mainland and overseas, including prominent representatives from the "three sisters" of private international law - the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law, the Hague Conference on Private International Law and the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law.
     These are just some examples of the prowess of our legal services and international connectivity. Hong Kong is well placed to contribute to the high-standard opening up of China's market, and to serve as a platform for collaboration between our country and more than 180 countries and international organisations under the Belt and Road Initiative.
     Hong Kong will continue to capitalise on the unique advantages of "one country, two systems", safeguard the rule of law under the Basic Law, and integrate actively into the development of the Belt and Road Initiative to foster co-operation in the global arena. We will make full use of the gifts that are bestowed upon us, and strive to let our Pearl of the Orient shine brighter than ever.
     On that note, I wish you all a fruitful conference. Thank you very much.

Ends/Saturday, December 3, 2022
Issued at HKT 10:20