Party work report offers HK role on several fronts

The report delivered by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Community Party of China, at the 20th CPC National Congress marked an important milestone in our nation’s new journey to build a modern socialist country and realize its second-centenary goal. The report depicted an extraordinary and inspiring China story that makes all Chinese proud and captures global attention.

Data tell the China story better than anything. Since the 18th Party Congress, China’s economy sustained rapid growth with its GDP surging from 54 trillion yuan ($7.45 trillion) to 114 trillion yuan in 10 years, and its per capita GDP more than doubled, from over 45,000 yuan to over 87,000 yuan. China has become the second-largest economy in the world with its share of the global economy climbing to 18.5 percent. The accomplishment of eradication of absolute poverty has significantly improved people’s living standards. China has also joined the ranks of the world’s innovators with breakthroughs in many core technologies, taking the lead in strategic emerging industries such as electric cars, biotechnology and medical equipment, the space industry and 5G telecommunications. China’s outstanding achievements should be attributed to the collective dedication and hard work of our Party and our people, including Hong Kong compatriots.

China must continue to focus on the real economy in pursuing economic growth and boost its strength in manufacturing and product quality, as President Xi Jinping highlighted in the Party Congress: “We must regard science and technology as our primary productive force, talent as our primary resource, and innovation as our primary driver of growth.” Hong Kong should make full efforts to secure a role and leverage its own strengths to contribute to national development and help bolster the national economy.

Hong Kong can play a significant role in propelling overall national I&T development and enhancing overall competitiveness for our country

China will fully implement “the strategy of invigorating the country through science and education and developing a strong workforce for the modernization drive”, an objective written into Xi’s report to the Party Congress. This is a strategy that puts emphasis on education, science and technology, and talents. Hong Kong can play a significant role in propelling overall national I&T development and enhancing overall competitiveness for our country. Under the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25), Hong Kong is on course to becoming an international I&T center. Hong Kong, with five universities ranking among the top 100 globally, has a solid foundation in scientific research. Together with its edge in finance, Hong Kong has become Asia’s largest and the world’s second-largest fundraising hub in biotechnology. The city’s dynamic I&T ecosystem can serve as a melting pot that helps connect talents, education, technology and finance for our country and assist the transformation and commercialization of sci-tech achievements in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

The 20th Party Congress report made a clear commitment and provided a road map to the next level of the country’s reform and opening-up. It stressed “promoting high-standard opening-up and steadily expanding institutional opening-up with regard to rules, regulations, management and standards, to accelerate the country’s transformation into a trade of quality, promote the high-quality development of the Belt and Road Initiative, and preserve the diversity and stability of the international economic landscape and trade relations”. Leveraging the mainland’s support while engaging the world, Hong Kong can help facilitate our country’s “bringing in” and “going global” efforts.

As mainland companies are deepening their business relations with counterparts in Belt and Road regions and beyond, the relevant professional services are in greater demand. Hong Kong, with its common law system and wide international connectivity, is an ideal location to provide financial, management and legal services. Wang Wentao, the minister of commerce, noted earlier that the mainland supports Hong Kong’s bid to join the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership group as soon as possible so that Hong Kong can help resolve investment disputes by using its renowned legal and dispute-resolution services, which will strengthen Hong Kong’s role in promoting high-quality development in Belt and Road regions.

Last but not least, the report once again affirmed that “one country, two systems” is a great innovation of socialism with Chinese characteristics, proved to be the best institutional arrangement for ensuring sustained prosperity and stability in Hong Kong and Macao. The policy must be adhered to over the long term with a focus on resolving deep-seated issues and problems in economic and social development. In my view, Hong Kong has exemplified the great success of “one country, two systems” to the world as the city is embracing a bright future ahead both socially and economically. In the coming five years, all Hong Kong residents must uphold “one country, two systems”, and work together in tackling Hong Kong’s pain points.

The 20th Party Congress marked a new milestone for both the Party and the country. Many Hong Kong residents watched the delivery of the work report to the Party Congress in livestreaming and tried painstakingly to grasp its implications for Hong Kong. In the future, we will certainly celebrate more historic triumphs, with people enjoying more-blissful lives. In Hong Kong, Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu delivered his first Policy Address last week, unveiling an array of measures aimed at resolving the city’s deep-seated problems, which echoed President Xi’s “four aspirations” highlighted in his keynote speech delivered at the 25th anniversary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region on July 1. With a concerted effort to dovetail with national development, Hong Kong is to open a new chapter in its own socioeconomic development while contributing to turning our country into a modern socialist country with Chinese characteristics.

The author is a Hong Kong deputy to the National People’s Congress and chairman of the Textile Council of Hong Kong.

The views do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.