The inaugural EY Greater China Economics Forum was held today as part of the 55th anniversary celebration of the EY Greater China region. The forum brought together C-suite business leaders to explore the enormous opportunities we see in the region and the significant role that Hong Kong plays in facilitating trade, investment and the overall economic development.
The Honorable Paul Chan, GBM, GBS, MH, JP, Financial Secretary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), People’s Republic of China, says in the keynote speech: “On green finance, the prospects are huge. It has been estimated that Asia will need about US$66 trillion in the coming three decades. The Mainland alone will need US$14.5 trillion over that period.
“Last year, the amount was some US$80 billion, registering a growth of more than 40% 2021. In terms of the amount of international green bond issued, we are No. 1 in Asia.
“Hong Kong, together with our sister cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA), is home to a strong cluster of greentech industry and start-ups. Some of them are already finding success in global markets.
“Hong Kong is emerging as a leader in green finance, well positioned to help the world in its long-term progress towards zero emissions.
“And then, fintech is allowing financial services to be more accessible and inclusive. And Hong Kong is helping effect that change.
“Hong Kong is now home to a vibrant ecosystem of more than 800 fintech companies and start-ups, large and small. Together, they offer innovative services in mobile payments, cross-border transfers, intelligent financial consultancy, wealth management, virtual asset trading, and blockchain.
"Web 3.0 also presents boundless prospects for financial innovation. The blockchain technology provides a decentralized, secure, transparent, low-cost and efficient platform for innovation. It is a technology with huge promising potential. We are committed to driving the development of Web 3.0.
"My sincere thanks to EY for organizing today’s forum and my heartiest congratulations on your 55th anniversary.”
Jack Chan, EY China Chairman and Greater China Regional Managing Partner, says: “For 55 years, the EY Greater China teams help clients seize new opportunities through our professional services - Assurance, Consulting, Tax, and Strategy and Transactions - and our deep industry expertise and experience and deliver responsible growth that is more sustainable and inclusive.
"This forum is a testament to EY commitment to connecting clients across different industries and working together to create a better business environment that ultimately benefits the wider community. At EY Greater China, we firmly believe that the role of businesses is not just to prosper but to contribute positively to society. That's why we're proud to host this forum, which provides a platform to encourage profound discussion about issues that matter to all of us. We hope this forum will serve as a platform for meaningful conversations and collaboration as we work towards a more sustainable and prosperous future for the EY Greater China region clients.”
The Hong Kong brand and its dual role
Dr Jacob Kam, CEO of MTR Corporation Limited, John Witt, Group Managing Director of Jardine Matheson Group Holdings Limited, Dr Philip Zhai, President of Ascendent Capital Partners (Asia) Limited, and Professor Lapman Lee, Professor of Practice (ESG, FinTech, Governance) of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University shared their insights at the first panel discussion “The evolution of the Hong Kong brand and its dual role as the international hub and a gateway to the Chinese market”.
The panelists agreed that Hong Kong is well-positioned to play an important role in the global market with its unique strengths. In the future, it will attract investors through high quality development planning, promoting technological innovation and industrial restructuring and upgrading, and enhancing talent cultivation. At the same time, Hong Kong will become an important gateway and capital center for the "Belt and Road" and play an important role in the GBA, transforming itself into the center for technological innovation and financial services, promoting regional integration and achieving a higher level of economic development.
Hong Kong as an international green-tech center and promotes high quality development
At the second panel, Howard Lee, Deputy Chief Executive of Hong Kong Monetary Authority, Dr Anthony Ng, Co-Founder and CEO of Hong Kong Virtual Asset Exchange, Lareina Wang, Executive Director, Head of Digital and Innovation, Institutional Banking Group of DBS Bank Hong Kong, and King Leung, Head of Fintech of Invest Hong Kong, HKSAR discussed “Tech-up Hong Kong’s future to embrace the emergence of green finance, virtual assets and fintech”.
The speakers indicated that with the rapid development of digital economy, Hong Kong can leverage its powerful financial and technological base to promote the digital economy and turn into an important center of digital economy in Asia. With advanced green technologies and environmental industries, Hong Kong can integrate with the national environmental protection policy to facilitate green economy and green finance, which will promote sustainable development.
Jasmine Lee, EY Hong Kong and Macau Managing Partner, says: “Whatever success is possible for Hong Kong’s tomorrow must be derived from the foundation of its strengths, including Hong Kong’s free market economy; its deep expertise and global reputation in logistics, trade and commerce, healthcare, financial services, professional services and its diverse and multi-cultured society.
To prepare for an increasingly technology- and sustainability-oriented future, businesses, investors, service providers, regulators and policymakers have to collaborate in articulating Hong Kong’s strategic role in the context of national development, demonstrating our commitment to innovation and sustainable development goals, and strengthening our all-round competitiveness for capturing new opportunities whilst managing new challenges.
At EY, we are committed to joining hands with all of you in translating Hong Kong’s strengths today into its continued success tomorrow and shaping the future by providing cutting-edge and innovative professional services that create long-term value for our clients, our society and our people.”
Embracing our heritage and shaping the future
In 1968, the EY organization embarked on its remarkable and enduring journey in the Greater China region with the establishment of Arthur Young in Hong Kong. Today, the EY Greater China region has a strong presence with over 23,000 professionals and more than 950 Partners, serving clients through 34 office locations. The teams aspire to deliver on the mission of being one of the most trusted professional services organizations in the region.
For over half a century, EY Greater China has established an enviable position as a trusted professional services provider and advisor to businesses in the region, promoting entrepreneurship and delivering seamless, innovative and exceptional multidisciplinary services. The Greater China teams have been accelerating the market advancement and development through business expansion and industry penetration. Through the relentless attention to top-notch talent development, ongoing commitment to innovation, social responsibility and long-term value creation, as well as continuous contributions to foster high quality and sustainable growth, EY teams are building a better working world for, and with, EY clients, people and society.
For 55 years, EY teams have made unswerving efforts to contribute to the economic development of the Greater China region. By supporting regional advancement, upgrading industries, supporting national strategies such as the GBA, the Belt and Road Initiative, transformation of SOEs, pioneering financial innovation and transitioning to a low carbon economy, the team will continue to leverage our appropriate strengths to facilitate sustainable growth in the years ahead. The EY organization has maintained an unwavering ambition to the creation of long-term value and continuous innovation. This has helped EY teams provide the exceptional services for which they are known, promote entrepreneurship, positively impact the communities in which we operate, build trust in capital markets, and help enable EY clients to generate lasting value.