SFST continues attending Asian Development Bank Annual Meeting in Korea (with photos)
In response to the theme of this year's Annual Meeting, "Rebounding Asia: Recover, Reconnect, and Reform", Mr Hui said at the Governors' Business Session this morning that the timely theme is the common goal of all countries in the post-COVID period. He elaborated that in order to achieve the ADB's thematic "4Rs", Hong Kong has been doing "3Es".
"Empowering private capital" is the first E. "One of the global issues that we have been dealing with is climate change. Empowering private capital is pivotal in view of the increasing catastrophic events around the world," Mr Hui said, adding that Hong Kong launched a pilot grant scheme to sponsor the issue of insurance-linked securities (ILS) in 2021, facilitating four catastrophe bond issuances with a total issuance amount of US$560 million. He noted that Hong Kong welcomes ADB members to make use of the city's platform to issue ILS.
On "enlarging connectivity", the second E, Mr Hui explained that Hong Kong's well-established financial infrastructure and regulations enable mutual capital market access schemes with the Mainland, including Stock Connect, Bond Connect and Wealth Management Connect, which provide a more comprehensive product suite for investors. The third E is "enabling technology", covering the hot topics of fintech and virtual assets (VA). Mr Hui said the two topics are new areas in which many jurisdictions are conducting consultations or contemplating regulations to facilitate reform of their financial systems and protection of investors' interests. He also introduced Hong Kong's efforts in this regard.
This afternoon, Mr Hui met with the Chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC) of Korea, Mr Kim Joo-hyun. Noting the FSC's plan to promote digital finance with focuses on improving regulations and ensuring protection for digital finance users, Mr Hui said that Hong Kong, as an international financial centre, is open and inclusive towards the global community of innovators engaging in VA businesses. He briefed Mr Kim on Hong Kong's licensing regime for VA service providers. The new regime will align requirements for VA exchanges in terms of anti-money laundering, counter-terrorist financing, and investor protection to those currently applicable to traditional financial institutions, hence offering licensed VA exchanges the status and credibility to access more investors in the Hong Kong market.
At a separate meeting with Co-head of Institutional Client Group and the Global Head of Public Sector Banking of HSBC Mr Michael Ellam, Mr Hui shared Hong Kong's latest developments in the offshore Renminbi (RMB) business and the plentiful investment opportunities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA).
Mr Hui also met with the Executive Vice Chairman of Korea Enterprises Federation, Mr Lee Dong-geun. Mr Hui emphasised that Hong Kong welcomes businesses and talents from overseas, and has established dedicated teams to attract businesses and talents strategically.
Yesterday (May 3), Mr Hui paid a courtesy call on the Chinese Ambassador to Korea, Mr Xing Haiming. Mr Hui said that the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau has adopted a strategy of bringing in and going out to drive the development of Hong Kong's financial market, and he has introduced Hong Kong's unique advantages under "one country, two systems" to Korea's financial and business sectors.
During the day, Mr Hui met with ADB Vice President Mr Ahmed Saeed. He briefed Mr Saeed on Core Climate, an international carbon marketplace launched by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited last year. Core Climate currently is the only carbon marketplace that offers Hong Kong dollar and RMB settlements for the trading of international voluntary carbon credits. They also discussed how ADB and Hong Kong can share knowledge of fintech for the benefits of developing countries.
Mr Hui also had an exchange session with the Chief Executive Officer of Kakao Pay, Mr Shin Won-keun. Kakao Pay is a major mobile payment and digital wallet service based in Korea and offers services abroad including Japan, Macao and the Mainland. Mr Hui welcomed Kakao Pay to expand their business to Hong Kong, noting that there are over 800 fintech companies offering different kinds of innovative and convenient financial services, and many of them have gained a foothold in the GBA and regional markets.
Mr Hui will return to Hong Kong tonight.
Ends/Thursday, May 4, 2023
Issued at HKT 17:45
Issued at HKT 17:45