Hong Kong News

Nonpartisan, Noncommercial, unconstrained.
Friday, Jun 21, 2024

Why members have high hopes for Hong Kong leader’s new top-level advisory body

Why members have high hopes for Hong Kong leader’s new top-level advisory body

Among those attending first meeting of 34-strong Chief Executive’s Council of Advisers were tycoons Victor Li, Peter Woo and Robert Ng.

A new high-level body advising Hong Kong’s leader held its inaugural meeting on Thursday to discuss how the city could leverage opportunities amid geopolitical changes, with attendees regarding talks as more “focused and fruitful” than at similar panels set up under previous administrations.

During the closed-door meeting of the Chief Executive’s Council of Advisers, which focused on economic development, innovation and global collaboration, insiders said city leader John Lee Ka-chiu also pledged to follow up on concrete measures to attract family offices and enhance competitiveness in various sectors.

Unofficial discussions continued into the evening as Lee later hosted a dinner for the 34-strong council, the government said.

“Their valuable insights are particularly important at a time when the global economy is full of uncertainties and in view of continual geopolitical tensions,” Lee said in a statement.

Chief Executive John Lee.

“I have instructed the secretariat of the council to collate valuable opinions and concrete suggestions raised by the advisers, and come up with a list of priority topics for further research and discussion, so as to assist in my formulation of policies and mapping out the next steps of the council’s work,” Lee said.

Among the tycoons at the meeting were CK Asset Holdings chairman and managing director Victor Li Tzar-kuoi, World International Group chairman Peter Woo Kwong-ching and Sino Group chairman Robert Ng Chee Siong.

The council, chaired by Lee, also includes top bankers, scholars and politicians.

The meeting was divided into three sessions, each with about 10 advisers. High-quality economic development and sustainability were discussed in the morning, followed in the afternoon by innovation and entrepreneurship, as well as regional and global collaboration.

The council focused on opportunities for Hong Kong under the current international environment and global trends, covering China’s modernisation, the global economy, international relations, geopolitics, the financial environment, energy and sustainable development, according to an official release.

It said the advisers took the view that Hong Kong should “develop a new mindset” in formulating policies, actively integrate into national development, strengthen external exchanges and bolster regional connectivity.

John Lee hosted a dinner on Thursday evening for his advisers.

Footage released by the government showed Lee thanking advisers who attended the morning session, saying their “wise counsel” would help him formulate policies and that he was inviting “a few more” to join the council.

Chief Secretary Eric Chan Kwok-ki, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po and Secretary for Justice Paul Lam Ting-kwok attended the meeting. Stephen Wong Yuen-shan, head of the new Chief Executive’s Policy Unit, was also there.

Entertainment tycoon Allan Zeman, who attended the session on innovation, said he had high hopes the administration would be able to deliver initiatives “more efficiently” under Lee’s leadership style, compared with similar advisory bodies in the previous administration.

“In the past, we had just one big group. A lot of good ideas, a lot of talking, but not much happened in the end … It was more like a tuck shop,” he said.

“But this time, it worked a lot better as we split into groups. Discussions were more focused and fruitful because we had more time to go into good ideas.”

Zeman previously sat on a 35-member advisory body led by Lee’s predecessor Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor on innovation and strategic development.

Members met 14 times over four years, mostly in a big group setting. Lee appointed at least 15 members of that group to the new council.

Peter Woo.

On Thursday, each session lasted two hours, during which all members were given sufficient time to exchange views on targeted issues, an attendee said.

“John Lee just briefly greeted us and said he was there to listen before inviting members to speak, a huge contrast to similar meetings chaired by Lam who made long opening remarks,” the source explained.

Another member also noted Lee’s different approach.

“He promised to delegate colleagues to follow up on our ideas individually, something I didn’t see very often in the previous government,” said the member, who also had sat on similar bodies before.

Previous governments under Leung Chun-ying and Donald Tsang Yam-kuen had also set up a Commission on Strategic Development to advise the leaders.

Political commentator Sonny Lo Shiu-hing said Lee, who had spent almost his entire career in security, sought to project himself as an inclusive leader by actively consulting business stakeholders on the advisory body.

“What also distinguishes him from his predecessor was the setting up of a high-level policy unit, which is expected to follow up on ideas proposed by advisers with in-depth studies,” he said. “I see this as crucial in effective policy delivery by the relevant bureau.”

Victor Li.

The first meeting came a week after the council’s establishment, with Lee describing it then as a “timely and crucial” body at a time when Hong Kong was seeking a comeback on the international stage after the Covid-19 pandemic.

Officials had occasionally warned that the financial hub had to brace for uncertainty and fluctuations in the market as United States-China rivalry continued.

Separately, Lee also met Wu Xiaohui, mayor of Jiangmen city in Guangdong province, who visited Hong Kong on Thursday.

He noted the efforts by Jiangmen in developing advanced manufacturing and attracting enterprises, saying Hong Kong was “the best partner” for it to expand overseas.

Lee said there was plenty of room for collaboration between the two cities in areas such as innovation and technology, finance, tourism and education, and both places would forge close ties in contributing to the high-quality development of the Greater Bay Area.


Related Articles

Hong Kong News
It's always the people with the dirty hands pointing their fingers
Paper straws found to contain long-lasting and potentially toxic chemicals - study
FTX's Bankman-Fried headed for jail after judge revokes bail
Blackrock gets half a trillion dollar deal to rebuild Ukraine
Steve Jobs' Son Launches Venture Capital Firm With $200 Million For Cancer Treatments
Google reshuffles Assistant unit, lays off some staffers, to 'supercharge' products with A.I.
End of Viagra? FDA approved a gel against erectile dysfunction
UK sanctions Russians judges over dual British national Kara-Murza's trial
US restricts visa-free travel for Hungarian passport holders because of security concerns
America's First New Nuclear Reactor in Nearly Seven Years Begins Operations
Southeast Asia moves closer to economic unity with new regional payments system
Political leader from South Africa, Julius Malema, led violent racist chants at a massive rally on Saturday
Today Hunter Biden’s best friend and business associate, Devon Archer, testified that Joe Biden met in Georgetown with Russian Moscow Mayor's Wife Yelena Baturina who later paid Hunter Biden $3.5 million in so called “consulting fees”
'I am not your servant': IndiGo crew member, passenger get into row over airline meal
Singapore Carries Out First Execution of a Woman in Two Decades Amid Capital Punishment Debate
Spanish Citizenship Granted to Iranian chess player who removed hijab
US Senate Republican Mitch McConnell freezes up, leaves press conference
Speaker McCarthy says the United States House of Representatives is getting ready to impeach Joe Biden.
San Francisco car crash
This camera man is a genius
3D ad in front of Burj Khalifa
Next level gaming
BMW driver…
Google testing journalism AI. We are doing it already 2 years, and without Google biased propoganda and manipulated censorship
Unlike illegal imigrants coming by boats - US Citizens Will Need Visa To Travel To Europe in 2024
Musk announces Twitter name and logo change to X.com
The politician and the journalist lost control and started fighting on live broadcast.
The future of sports
Unveiling the Black Hole: The Mysterious Fate of EU's Aid to Ukraine
Farewell to a Music Titan: Tony Bennett, Renowned Jazz and Pop Vocalist, Passes Away at 96
Alarming Behavior Among Florida's Sharks Raises Concerns Over Possible Cocaine Exposure
Transgender Exclusion in Miss Italy Stirs Controversy Amidst Changing Global Beauty Pageant Landscape
Joe Biden admitted, in his own words, that he delivered what he promised in exchange for the $10 million bribe he received from the Ukraine Oil Company.
TikTok Takes On Spotify And Apple, Launches Own Music Service
Global Trend: Using Anti-Fake News Laws as Censorship Tools - A Deep Dive into Tunisia's Scenario
Arresting Putin During South African Visit Would Equate to War Declaration, Asserts President Ramaphosa
Hacktivist Collective Anonymous Launches 'Project Disclosure' to Unearth Information on UFOs and ETIs
Typo sends millions of US military emails to Russian ally Mali
Server Arrested For Theft After Refusing To Pay A Table's $100 Restaurant Bill When They Dined & Dashed
The Changing Face of Europe: How Mass Migration is Reshaping the Political Landscape
China Urges EU to Clarify Strategic Partnership Amid Trade Tensions
The Last Pour: Anchor Brewing, America's Pioneer Craft Brewer, Closes After 127 Years
Democracy not: EU's Digital Commissioner Considers Shutting Down Social Media Platforms Amid Social Unrest
Sarah Silverman and Renowned Authors Lodge Copyright Infringement Case Against OpenAI and Meta
Why Do Tech Executives Support Kennedy Jr.?
The New York Times Announces Closure of its Sports Section in Favor of The Athletic
BBC Anchor Huw Edwards Hospitalized Amid Child Sex Abuse Allegations, Family Confirms
Florida Attorney General requests Meta CEO's testimony on company's platforms' alleged facilitation of illicit activities
The Distorted Mirror of actual approval ratings: Examining the True Threat to Democracy Beyond the Persona of Putin
40,000 child slaves in Congo are forced to work in cobalt mines so we can drive electric cars.