'One country, two systems' key for HK in Bay Area plan

By Oswald Chan | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-11-18 11:20
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The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region should take a three-pronged approach to find its place in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and its participation in this national development blueprint should be guided by adhering to the "one country, two systems" policy, according to the Greater Bay Area Conference.

Greater Bay Area Conference: The Way Forward, organized by China Daily and the Silk Road Economic Development Research Center, was held on Wednesday. It attracted over 400 people including government officials, business leaders and members of academia to share and exchange their views on how to enhance collaboration among all sectors in the Hong Kong and Macao SARs and Guangdong province.

"It is time that we prepare the way forward for Hong Kong in this exciting region. I see three parts to this preparation, which are research, messaging and community engagement," Leung Chun-ying, vice-chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, said in his address.

Leung said through research, the city can give the most comprehensive and factual understanding of the latest developments and policy publications in all sectors and in all cities in the Bay Area. The second stage, messaging, is to broadcast the results of the research findings comprehensively, effectively and objectively. The final step is community engagement, such as in schools, professional bodies, trade industries and investment communities aiming to change mindsets and attitudes, he said.

Leung added that Hong Kong can facilitate collaboration between mainland scientists and Hong Kong investors to bring new capital to laboratories and startups on the mainland. The city also can facilitate direct contacts between businesses and government, such as linking Hong Kong businesses and mainland municipal governments, broadening such connections and intensifying relationships.

Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor pointed out some important principles in guiding Hong Kong's participation in the Bay Area blueprint.

"First, adherence to the 'one country, two systems' policy," she said in her speech. "The Bay Area should leverage this unique arrangement of 'one country, two systems', three customs jurisdictions, three legal systems, etc. It should also emphasize mutual cooperation and win-win arrangements to minimize unhelpful competition while synergy should be created."

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