CNY: “Hong Kong is able to meet all challenges”

Berlin – The corona virus and the future of the financial industry in Hong Kong has been at the center of this year’s annual Chinese New Year reception, hosted by director Bill Li of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (HKETO) in Berlin.

HKETO director Bill Li pointed out in his welcoming speech at the Berlin headquarters of Telekom, that Hong Kong has been facing various challenges throughout the past 12 months and emphasized that Hong Kong is one of the places in the world which is most prepared fto fight an epidemic. “For the much you know about the Hong Kong style of efficiency, we the Government have implemented a comprehensive and coordinated approach to contain the spread of the novel corona virus and are able to protect the health of the community while maintaining Hong Kong’s position as an international city and aviation hub.”

Li further: “The Government response is guided by three key principles: responding promptly, staying alert to the situation, and working in an open and transparent manner. A host of measures that are evidence-based are being rolled out on a daily basis in view of the local and global circumstances. Please do count on Hong Kong that we will continue to be a responsible citizen in a global village.”

HKETO-Director Bill Li

In general terms Li made clear: “Hong Kong’s resilience and versatility are in our DNA, and our fundamentals and institutional strengths remain strong. To begin with, freedom and the rule of law are the core values of Hong Kong and the cornerstone of our long-term prosperity and stability.”

Li continued: “On the economic front, finance has been a pillar sector for Hong Kong’s prosperity. The financial markets of Hong Kong have functioned smoothly with our freely convertible currency and ample liquidity in the banking and capital markets. The Hong Kong Dollar exchange rate has remained stable under the Linked Exchange Rate System. The stock market has continued to attract IPOs and once again Hong Kong came first in the global rankings in 2019 – the seventh time in the past 11 years. The fintech and biotech sectors are growing fast. Our commitment to a green future also never wavers. Whilst some international rating agencies have recently expressed doubts in their outlooks on Hong Kong, others have rather reaffirmed their vote of trust on us”.

Li finally emphasized: “The IMF, for instance, recognizes that Hong Kong continues to maintain its competitiveness which is marked by the free movement of capital and information, a simple tax system, a sound regulatory regime, the rule of law and quality professional services, and it also affirms Hong Kong’s position as a global financial center and a regional trading hub”.

The Berlin HKETO office is the official government representation in economic matters for Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, the Slovak Republic, Slovenia and Switzerland.