The Policy Address 2000

Linking China and the Rest of the World

43. Hong Kong has long acted as an intermediary between the Mainland and world markets. China's accession to the WTO will give us an opportunity to further expand our network which links with the Mainland and overseas markets, and to attract more Mainland and overseas companies to set up their regional headquarters here. Historically, our economic and trade relations were concentrated mainly in a few major world markets. These relations are bound to become more important. But we have also noted that some developing areas in other parts of the world are eager to do business with China. To take advantage of this, we need to train a critical mass of people with suitable talent as quickly as possible. These people should have a thorough understanding of the business environment of the Mainland, knowledge in international finance and commerce and proficiency in Putonghua and foreign languages, especially English. A good command of English is not only a tool for conducting business and trade with the world, but also a must in maintaining Hong Kong's status as an international financial centre. I hope that the educational community will respond to this need and offer more relevant courses to help nurture such talent.

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