November 16, 2022
HONG KONG – By leveraging its strengths and the central government’s support, Hong Kong can continue to be an international shipping center amid the challenging enviroment facing the global shipping industry, political heavyweights and industry stakeholders said at the second World Maritime Merchants Forum.
With the theme “Together for a Brighter Future”, the forum was hosted by the China Merchants Group and other organizers and discussed topics such as Hong Kong’s role in upgrading the global shipping value chain, technology applications in the shipping industry and pursuing the goal of a green and smart port. More than 500 online and offline participants from the maritime and commercial sectors joined the forum on Tuesday.
With the theme “Together for a Brighter Future”, the forum was hosted by the China Merchants Group and other organizers and discussed topics such as Hong Kong’s role in upgrading the global shipping value chain, technology applications in the shipping industry and pursuing the goal of a green and smart port
Leung Chun-ying, Vice-Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, said the continued reforms and opening-up of the Chinese mainland were major factors supporting Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s shipping industry despite the COVID-19 pandemic, an uncertain geopolitical situation and the beleaguered global economy.
“In the national 13th and 14th Five-Year Plans (2016-20 and 2021-25), the central government openly supports the elevation of Hong Kong as an international shipping center, alongside finance and trade, meaning an upgrading of the entire chain in the global context of the shipping industry,” Leung said.
Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu said the HKSAR government will continue to “proactively entrench Hong Kong’s strengths by further developing our high value-added maritime services.”
Lee added that the SAR government endeavors to attract more high-quality maritime businesses to Hong Kong, nurture maritime talents, and actively promote the development of a smart port and the sustainable development in the shipping industry.
In July, the SAR government launched a new half-rate profits tax concessionary regime for qualified commercial principals, shipping agents, shipping managers and shipbrokers. Nearly 900 shipping-related enterprises have established their presence in the city.
China Merchants Group Chairman Miao Jianmin said there is a need to build a shipping industry ecology, improve the rationality of industrial resources layout, apply technologies, and promote low-carbon emissions reduction as new development opportunities in the process of restructuring global supply chains.
Yin Zonghua, deputy director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong SAR, said: “Under the unique advantage of the ‘one country, two systems’ policy, Hong Kong has the strong support of the country while being closely connected to the world. The central government strongly supports Hong Kong to maintain its unique position and advantages.”