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Hong Kong remains the business bridge between the Chinese mainland and the world as its financial system is still intact despite the global economic slowdown, lingering trade tensions, geopolitical uncertainties and local political instability, senior Hong Kong government officials said on Monday.
“Hong Kong, with its strategic regional location, and its extensive, ever-deepening cultural and financial ties with the mainland, is the nation’s international financial center, contributing to the sustainable progress of the country, the region and the world,” Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said in her opening address at the Asian Financial Forum 2020, organized by the HKSAR government and Hong Kong Trade Development Council.
“People around the world take assurance in our trusted and bilingual common law system, our sound financial regulatory framework, low taxes and deep connections with the mainland and the rest of the world,” she said.
Last September, Hong Kong was ranked the world’s third financial center in the Global Financial Centres Index, trailing New York and London.
“The principle of ‘one country, two systems’, judicial independence and economic freedom are the city’s core values. Despite global and local turbulence, Hong Kong’s financial system remains solid as the Hong Kong dollar exchange rate is stable and capital inflows and outflows remain free,” Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po told the AFF’s keynote media luncheon.
Hong Kong topped the world last year as the largest fundraising venue, taking in about $40 billion, marking the seventh time in the past 11 years the city has led the world as the venue for initial public offerings, according to the Hong Kong government.
The SAR’s stock market is now the second-largest fundraising destination globally for biotech companies after Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing launched a clearly defined and comprehensive regulatory regime for listed companies with a weighted voting rights structure.
The city has also extended stock market connectivity with the mainland through the Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect, the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Stock Connect and the Bond Connect. Government data show the Stock Connect program has realized cumulative net transactions of about US$150 billion on the mainland and more than $130 billion in Hong Kong since its inception in late 2014.
Hong Kong’s stock market capitalization in 2019 reached US$4.9 trillion.
The SAR government is working to bolster equity market connectivity with the mainland on all fronts to capitalize the city’s unique and irreplaceable role in the country’s further opening-up.
James Lau Yee-cheung, secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, envisaged the ETF Connect between Hong Kong and the mainland – the connect program that allows listed exchange-traded funds to be traded in each other’s stock market – could be launched this year.
“It should take more time to formulate the Primary Equity Connect that allows Hong Kong and mainland investors to subscribe to new IPO shares to be listed in the reciprocal stock market,” Lau said on the sidelines of the forum.business silicone wristbandsnumbered wristbands for eventsrubber bracelet meaningsgreen rubber braceletblank wristbands