Lam pledges to boost HK’s in­ter­na­tional role

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - TOP NEWS - By OSWALD CHAN in Hong Kong oswald@chi­nadai­

Hong Kong’s leader on Wed­nes­day pledged to lever­age the city’s au­ton­omy promised by the Ba­sic Law in in­ter­na­tional af­fairs, while ex­tend­ing co­op­er­a­tion with the main­land on all fronts.

Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor con­cluded her four-day visit in Bei­jing, meeting var­i­ous de­part­ment heads of the cen­tral gov­ern­ment.

On Wed­nes­day, she met Min­is­ter of For­eign Af­fairs Wang Yi, Min­is­ter of Culture Luo Shugang and Di­rec­tor of the State Ad­min­is­tra­tion of Press, Pub­li­ca­tions, Ra­dio, Film and Tele­vi­sion Nie Chenxi.

“The Ba­sic Law has be­stowed on Hong Kong a high de­gree of au­ton­omy in cer­tain in­ter­na­tional af­fairs. In the com­ing five years, Hong Kong should lever­age its unique niches in in­ter­na­tional af­fairs,” Lam told the for­eign min­is­ter.

“Hong Kong has main­tained its sta­tus as an in­ter­na­tional city and has signed free trade agree­ments with var­i­ous coun­tries,” she added.

Wang Yi noted:“The Of­fice of the Com­mis­sioner of the Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion will sup­port Lam to im­ple­ment ‘ one coun­try, two sys­tems’, and pro­mote so­cial and eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment of Hong Kong.”

Hong Kong and the main­land signed an agree­ment in Bei­jing on Wed­nes­day to boost tourism co­op­er­a­tion as the SAR strives to pull the strug­gling in­dus­try out of the dol­drums.

The Agree­ment on Fur­ther En­hance­ment of Tourism Co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the Main­land and Hong Kong was signed by Sec­re­tary for Com­merce and Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Ed­ward Yau Tang-wah and China Na­tional Tourism Ad­min­is­tra­tion (CNTA) Vice-Chair­man Du Jiang.

The sign­ing cer­e­mony was wit­nessed by Lam and CNTA Chair­man Li Jin­zao.

Un­der the agree­ment, Hong Kong and the main­land will jointly de­velop Mar­itime Silk Road tourism prod­ucts and pro­mote mar­kets linked to the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive. It will also en­rich multi-des­ti­na­tion travel itin­er­ar­ies to at­tract more vis­i­tors, tak­ing ad­van­tage of tourism re­sources in Hong Kong and nearby cities.

Co­op­er­a­tion on cruise travel will also be en­hanced, while more Hong Kong travel agents will be al­lowed to op­er­ate out­bound travel busi­ness for main­land res­i­dents un­der the Closer Eco­nomic Part­ner­ship Ar­range­ment frame­work.

The two sides will also for­mu­late a reg­u­lar com­mu­ni­ca­tion and co­or­di­na­tion mech­a­nism to study and discuss is­sues on re­gional tourism co­op­er­a­tion and reg­u­la­tion.

In meeting with the me­dia in­dus­try chief, Lam said pri­vate en­ter­prises of Hong Kong and the main­land in the pub­li­ca­tion and broad­cast­ing in­dus­try had cul­ti­vated deep busi­ness con­nec­tions.

The coun­try’s me­dia chief Nie high­lighted the strong co­op­er­a­tion of film­mak­ers across the bound­ary, say­ing Hong Kong and main­land film­mak­ers had pro­duced more than 80 films since 2003.

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