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High-Level Meeting cum the Second Plenary Session of the Hong Kong/Sichuan Co-operation Conference held in Sichuan (with photos/videos)

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     The Chief Executive, Mrs Carrie Lam, and the Secretary of the CPC Sichuan Provincial Committee, Mr Peng Qinghua, leading the delegations of the governments of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and Sichuan respectively, held the High-Level Meeting cum the Second Plenary Session of the Hong Kong/Sichuan Co-operation Conference (the meeting-cum-plenary) in Chengdu, Sichuan, today (September 23). The Deputy Director of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council, Mr Huang Liuquan, also attended the meeting-cum-plenary as a special guest. At the meeting-cum-plenary, both sides reviewed the achievements made since the last meeting and agreed on the directions for future co-operation.
 
     “The Hong Kong/Sichuan co-operation mechanism was established by the current-term Government in May 2018, which has then become an important co-operation platform for the two places. It is precious to witness the holding of this high-level meeting twice in three years’ time; especially as both sides have been unremittingly promoting economic and trade exchanges in the time of epidemics. Hong Kong will continue to capitalise on its strengths, and by leveraging the opportunities of the Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Circle development, Hong Kong and Sichuan will flourish through a deepening win-win collaboration,” Mrs Lam said.     
 
     Hong Kong and Sichuan reached consensus on the following 12 co-operation areas:
 
Economic, trade, and the Belt and Road Initiative
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     Encourage and support Hong Kong and Sichuan enterprises to participate in each other’s economic and trade events and exhibitions, and promote enterprises of the two places in going global together and participating in key projects of the Belt and Road Initiative, etc.
 
Finance
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     Continue to promote the co-operation between Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited, the People’s Government of Sichuan Province and the relevant financial regulators to encourage Sichuan companies to list in Hong Kong. Leverage Hong Kong’s capital markets to serve the country’s real economy and facilitate technological innovation to promote Sichuan Province’s biotechnology and high-tech companies to “go global”.
 
     Encourage more Sichuan companies to make use of Hong Kong’s capital markets as well as financial and professional services for green and sustainable investment, financing and certification. Welcome Sichuan financial technologies (fintech) firms and talents to develop innovative fintech products and solutions in Hong Kong.
 
Civil aviation, maritime transport and logistics
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     Support the enhanced co-operation between the MTR Corporation Limited and the Chengdu Municipal People’s Government as well as the Chengdu Rail Transit Group, so as to expedite the collaboration on railway projects, and explore opportunities for collaboration on rail-plus-property development and station commercial business.
 
     Further strengthen trade co-operation and exchanges among logistics enterprises in Hong Kong and Sichuan. Support Sichuan companies to participate in the “Asian Logistics, Maritime and Aviation Conference” to be held in Hong Kong and consider organising Hong Kong enterprises to visit Sichuan on suitable occasions to understand more about Sichuan’s logistics development and grasp the opportunities arising from the “New Land and Marine Routes for Western Regions”.
 
     Support the Airport Authority Hong Kong in exploring provision of training and consultancy services to Sichuan on airport operation, management, construction and planning, etc.
 
Innovation and technology
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     Encourage the two places to complement each other’s strengths and promote commercialisation of technological achievements through matching activities; support universities and scientific research institutes in Hong Kong and Sichuan to carry out co-operation and exchanges, including jointly applying for national key scientific research projects, “Mainland-Hong Kong Joint Funding Scheme”, etc, to collaborate on research and development.
 
Professional legal services
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     Co-organise the “Hong Kong Legal Services Forum” in Sichuan by the Department of Justice and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council at an appropriate time. Encourage greater business collaboration between law firms in Hong Kong and Sichuan, and support the mutual training and exchange of legal professionals of the two places.
 
Cultural and creative industries and tourism
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     Support the development of creative industries in Hong Kong and Sichuan. Encourage talent exchanges, business matching and trade collaboration. Promote participation in creative events in both places by inviting the Sichuan trade to join the annual signature events in Hong Kong (e.g. the “Business of Design Week” and “Entertainment Expo”) and encouraging the Hong Kong trade to actively participate in the “Chengdu Creativity & Design Week” organised by the Chengdu Municipal People’s Government.
 
     Support the promotion of the culture and tourism brands of Sanxingdui, Jiuzhaigou and Giant Panda via Hong Kong’s exhibition platforms, and support the Hong Kong Tourism Board in maintaining close communication with the Sichuan Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism and the local industry to further deepen tourism co-operation between the two places.
 
Arts and sports
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     Promote arts and cultural exchanges between Hong Kong and Sichuan, include inviting Sichuan Opera troupes to perform in the Chinese Opera Festival in Hong Kong, and Sichuan organising exhibitions on cultural relics, delicacy, intangible cultural heritage and lantern crafts in Hong Kong.
 
     Encourage arts groups from Sichuan and Hong Kong to exchange with the local cultural sector, and teachers and students of arts academies during their performances in Hong Kong and Sichuan.
 
     Strengthen exchanges in sports between Hong Kong and Sichuan by inviting athletes of the two places to participate in each other’s sports events.
 
Youth exchange
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     Subject to the development of the epidemic, continue to promote youth exchanges, training and internship programmes between Hong Kong and Sichuan, organise the Youth Internship Programme at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in Sichuan, and implement Ba-Shu Cultural Exchange for Young People of Hong Kong and Hong Kong-Macao-Taiwan Internship Programme in Tianfu.
 
     Support Hong Kong young people to start businesses in Sichuan and organise short-term experiential projects at innovative and entrepreneurial bases, with a view to strengthening Hong Kong young people’s understanding of the entrepreneurial bases as well as the entrepreneurial policies and supporting measures in Sichuan.
 
Education
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     Encourage the sharing of education resources, enhance the joint cultivation of high-end innovation and technology talents through student developments, teacher exchanges, academic researches, etc. Strengthen inter-school exchanges and collaboration on vocational education. Continue to promote co-operation between Hong Kong and Sichuan sister schools and support the joint provision of education services by renowned universities of Hong Kong and Sichuan.
 
Healthcare and Chinese medicine
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     Step up regularisation of COVID-19 epidemic control and regional healthcare co-operation.
 
     Embark on multi-faceted co-operation in Chinese medicine, with a view to capitalising on the advantages of Sichuan’s Chinese medicine resources and Hong Kong’s internationalised Chinese medicine platform. Encourage Chinese medicine institutions of the two places to initiate expert exchanges in training and research, summer camps for medical students, etc. Strengthen co-operation between the two places in areas relating to Chinese medicine such as talent nurturing, technology and innovation, healthcare technology services and product development, etc.
 
Civil service exchange
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     Jointly promote, under the co-ordination of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council, exchanges between civil servants in Sichuan and Hong Kong so as to share management experience and expertise in public service.
 
Facilitation for Hong Kong people in the Mainland
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     Support Hong Kong people to pursue development opportunities in Sichuan. Upgrade the “one-stop” service portal for Hong Kong people in Sichuan. Make active efforts to implement at the local level the national measures that facilitate Hong Kong people to pursue development in the Mainland and the facilitation measures introduced by Sichuan Province so as to create a favourable environment for Hong Kong people to develop, study, live and travel in Sichuan.
 
Co-operation Memorandum Signing Ceremony
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     At the meeting, the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr John Lee, and the Vice-Governor of Sichuan Province, Mr Li Yunze, signed the “Co-operation Memorandum of the High-Level Meeting cum the Second Plenary Session of the Hong Kong/Sichuan Co-operation Conference”. The document (Chinese only) is in Annex 1.
 
     In addition, three co-operation agreements were signed by government departments and statutory bodies of the two places:
 

  • “Memorandum of Understanding on Deepening Sichuan and Hong Kong Economic Co-operation”;
  • “Framework Agreement on the Strategic Co-operation in Chinese Medicine”; and
  • “Agreement on Comprehensive Enhancement of Sichuan-Hong Kong Vocational Education Collaboration between the Department of Education of Sichuan Province and the Vocational Training Council of Hong Kong”.

     The “Framework Agreement on the Strategic Co-operation in Chinese Medicine” (Chinese only) signed by government departments of the two places is in Annex 2.

     Officials of the HKSAR Government accompanying the Chief Executive to attend the meeting-cum-plenary include the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr John Lee; the Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs, Mr Erick Tsang Kwok-wai; the Under Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Dr Bernard Chan; the Under Secretary for Transport and Housing, Dr Raymond So Wai-man; the Under Secretary for Food and Health, Dr Chui Tak-yi; and other representatives of the relevant bureaux.