May 13, 2022 “Hong Kong Still Matters” Hybrid Conference

Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office New York (HKETONY), Hong Kong Association of Atlanta (HKAA), and the Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC) organized a hybrid Conference with the in-person session held at MAC and the online session via Zoom Meeting. This is the first time HKETONY, our sponsor, cooperated with MAC and HKAA on the first Hybrid event. More than 150 people attended the live conference, and the online session.

John Woodward, VP of MAC made the introductory remarks, followed by Opening Remarks from Candy Nip, Director of HKETONY. The hosts assembled an excellent Panel speakers and moderator who are old hands of Hong Kong, China and Asia.

Speakers are 1) Ambassador Kurt Tong, Partner, The Asia Group, and Former US Consul General to Hong Kong and Macau. Tong discussed the role of Hong Kong being an international business hub and assessed the risks and opportunities. 2) Stephen Phillips, Director-General of Investment Promotion, Invest Hong Kong. Phillips discussed Hong Kong, the connector and route to growth opportunities in the Greater Bay Area. US and global firms can use Hong Kong to jump start their business potential in Greater Bay Area, a Region in Southern China with over $1.7 Trillion in GDP. 3) Dr. Yawei Liu, Director, China Program, The Carter Center. Liu went over the current issues of the US/China relationships as well as the role of Hong Kong. Despite the current situation in Hong Kong, Liu mentioned that no other Chinese cities can replace Hong Kong. Hong Kong still has many strengths that are critical to foreign firms doing business with Asia and with China. Our moderator Fred Tengshared his views on Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area in addition to moderating the flow of discussion and managing the Q&A session. Teng is President, America China Public Affairs Institute.

Though Hong Kong faces competition from Singapore and other international cities, the city has a lot to offer to Western companies penetrating the Chinese and Asian markets. Risks have increased due to the uncertainties and the US/China confrontation. Though opportunities exist for foreign firms to consider the Greater Bay Area, where Hong Kong can connect to other cities like Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Guangdong Province. The takeaway is Hong Kong matters, and continues to be an international business hub, a financial center, a logistics and trade hub, as well as a global city where East meets West. Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area is a great platform connecting to the increasing business opportunities in ASEAN.

The hosts expressed their gratitude and thanks to the speakers and audience, in making the hybrid event a success. The in-person attendees included executives from Delta Airlines, Home Depot, ZTE USA, Fintech associations, American Transaction Processors Coalition, Tech Alpharetta, XCMG USA (top heavy equipment firm from China), JPMC Bank, Bank of America, Loyal Trust Bank, HSBC Bank, Aprio LLP, Georgia Tech, Emory and Morgan Stanley. Other industry participants included healthcare, logistics, freight forwarding, real estate, software, Asian consultancy, insurance, and aviation. About 30 companies in attendance either have business with Hong Kong/China/Asia or are interested in Hong Kong/China/Asia. We are also grateful to have the support and participation from The Atlanta Mayor’s Office of International Affairs, Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Invest Atlanta and JETRO Georgia. The online/virtual attendees are from 13 U.S states, Canada, Hong Kong, China and even from Belgium.

Henry Yu, President, the Hong Kong Association of Atlanta; and Chairman, the National U.S. Hong Kong Business Association delivered the closing remarks. Yu introduced the Hong Kong families, and its resources and expertise available to help U.S. and Western firms navigate Hong Kong, Greater Bay Area and Asia. The National U.S. Hong Kong Business Association receive strong supports from HKETO, Hong Kong Trade Development Council, Invest Hong Kong, Cyberport Hong Kong and many other agencies. The twelve chapters of the Hong Kong associations in the U.S. stand ready to assist U.S. and global firms doing business in Asia. In closing, Yu borrowed the slogan from HKTDC “Your business, our mission” and we can help you!

May 17, 2022
Prepared by: Henry Yu

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