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Saturday, April 22, 2017, 00:18

Leung sees bay area win-win for HK, peers

By Zhou Mo
Leung sees bay area win-win for HK, peers
Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying (center) visits the west end of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge in Zhuhai on Friday to learn about progress in the project as he leads a Hong Kong delegation visiting cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. (Information Services Department)

ZHUHAI - Cooperation between Hong Kong and other cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area will benefit all sides and bring a win-win situation as long as the functions of each city are well positioned and perform well, Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying said on Friday.

Hong Kong has a competitive relationship with other cities around the world but has benefited and made progress from that competition over the past several decades, he said.

Meanwhile, “cooperative relations and potential between Hong Kong and other nine mainland cities in the Greater Bay Area is stronger and larger”, he told reporters in Zhuhai on Friday, wrapping up his three-day visit to six cities in the cluster.

Hong Kong is more internationalized than the mainland cities in the region and has strengths in finance, professional services and some other sectors, noted Leung.

"These are the advantages we can offer and areas where mainland cities in the Greater Bay Area need to take advantage of Hong Kong,” he said.

As long as we make good planning on (each city’s) functions, I believe Hong Kong and other cities in the Greater Bay Area will reap mutual benefits and achieve a win-win situation

Leung Chun-ying, Hong Kong Chief Executive

"As long as we make good planning on (each city’s) functions, I believe Hong Kong and other cities in the Greater Bay Area will reap mutual benefits and achieve a win-win situation, bringing better career development opportunities for Hong Kong people, especially the younger generation.”

Leung led a delegation of senior officials and business leaders to Guangzhou, Foshan, Zhaoqing, Jiangmen, Zhongshan and Zhuhai, most of which are on the west bank of Pearl River Estuary.

READ MORE: Don’t let Greater Bay Area opportunities pass you by

Cooperation between Hong Kong and Shenzhen has developed robustly thanks to geographical proximity, but with those on the west bank of the Pearl River Estuary, cooperation has been limited, he admitted.

The opening of Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link will bring new opportunities for cooperation between Hong Kong and those cities, he said.

“As to the flow of vehicles after the opening of the bridge, we have to see national policies, including exit and entry policies for both Hong Kong and mainland vehicles. We are negotiating the issue with the central government right now,” Leung said.

“The overall direction is to provide convenience to the largest extent for Hong Kong people to travel to the cities on the west bank.”

Acting mayor of Zhuhai Li Zezhong said the Zhuhai government will explore more efficient ways to cross the boundary at the bridge to offer more convenience to travelers and businesses by saving time and costs.

Premier Li Keqiang laid out the development blueprint of the Greater Bay Area when he delivered his Government Work Report to the National People’s Congress in March.

Comprising  11 cities – Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions and cities of Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Zhongshan, Dongguan, Huizhou, Jiangmen and Zhaoqing in Guangdong province – the region spans 56,500 square kilometers with a population of 67.7 million and an annual GDP of $1.3 trillion.

sally@chinadailyhk.com

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