Hong Kong to Capitalize on Developmental Opportunities under “the Belt and Road Initiative”
The Maritime Silk Road Society (MSRS) held a public forum entitled “Infrastructure Financing under the Belt and Road: Opportunities and Challenges for Hong Kong” today (3 June). The forum, with 150 participants from banking, business, academic and other sectors, provided a platform for speakers to share their insights into how banking and business sectors can capitalize on developmental opportunities under “the Belt and Road Initiative”.
Speakers of the forum included Mr Eddie Yue, Deputy Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and Director of HKMA Infrastructure Financing Facilitation Office (IFFO); and Dr Wang Chun Xin, Senior Economist of Economics & Strategic Planning Department, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited with Mr Danny Wong, Head of Strategic Development & Planning of Economics & Strategic Planning Department, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited as Moderator.
In her welcoming remarks, Mrs Regina Ip, Co-Chair of MSRS said, “Under the Belt and Road Initiative, priority is given to building infrastructure like railways, roads, ports, etc., in more than 60 countries. Although the Silk Road Fund was implemented with an initial capital of US$40 billion wholly funded by the Mainland, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (“AIIB”) will raise US$100 billion, these funds cannot meet long-term demand for infrastructure financing in these countries. The Belt and Road countries will have to turn to non-governmental financing.”
“As an international financial centre and a new AIIB member soon, Hong Kong has great potential in functioning as a fund-raising platform for infrastructural development under the Belt and Road Initiative,” Mrs Ip added.
In his presentation, Mr Eddie Yue made a detailed introduction to the role and recent progress of the IFFO. Mr Eddie Yue said, "Hong Kong is uniquely positioned to facilitate infrastructure investments and financing of the Belt and Road countries. As an international platform, IFFO works with a cluster of key stakeholders from Mainland China, Hong Kong and overseas to exchange information and share experience, build capacity and knowledge on infrastructure investments and financing, promote market and product development as well as facilitate infrastructure investment and financing flows."
“The rapid development of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (“AIIB”) has been widely supported by the international community as AIIB adopts innovation in the four major areas, including cooperation vision, governance structure, financing model and cooperation mechanism. Hong Kong can play five roles in the AIIB, providing many opportunities for the local banks to participate and develop new businesses,” Dr Wang Chun Xin said.
“The national Belt and Road Initiative provides substantial business opportunities to Hong Kong. Hong Kong’s competitive advantages, such as financial services, trade and logistics, management, can be fully leveraged to serve the Belt and Road regions, thus bringing new momentum for economic progress. Such progress will further underscore Hong Kong’s spirit of flexibility, dedication and hardwork,” Mr Danny Wong stressed.
1. Mrs Regina Ip delivering welcoming remarks.
2. Group photo (left to right): Dr Wang Chun Xin, Mrs Regina Ip, Mr Eddie Yue and Mr Danny Wong.
3. Mr Eddie Yue delivering his presentation.
4. Dr Wang Chun Xin delivering his presentation.
5. Mr Danny Wong moderating a panel discussion.