SCIO press conference on the development of Hengqin and Qianhai

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Chen Wenjun:

Last question, please. 

Shenzhen TV:

General Secretary Xi Jinping had stressed that it is necessary to make full use of the major cooperation platforms between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao to attract more young people from Hong Kong and Macao to study, work and live in the mainland, while promoting extensive communication, comprehensive exchanges, and in-depth integration among young people from the three areas, and strengthening their solidarity with the whole nation. What have the Hengqin and Qianhai cooperation zones done to promote the entrepreneurship and employment of Hong Kong and Macao youths? And how will the implementation of plans benefit more Hong Kong and Macao youths in the future? Thank you.

Chen Wenjun:

Your questions may concern Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao. First, we invite Mr. Cheong Weng Chon to answer.

Cheong Weng Chon:

Thank you, Mr. Chen. Hengqin is Macao's starting point for its participation in the development of the Greater Bay Area and its integration into national development, according to the policy address for the fiscal year 2020 of the Macao SAR government. This new area provides the most convenient and suitable space for Macao's diverse economic development, as outlined in the policy address. In recent years, the Macao SAR government has supported young entrepreneurs looking to work or start a business in Hengqin. As of this May, incubators including Macao-Hengqin Youth Entrepreneurship Valley (Inno Valley HQ) and Hengqin International Science and Technology Innovation Center have incubated 537 projects from Macao, and another 121 are currently under incubation. A project to support youth entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as platforms for advisory services and experience sharing, have facilitated cooperation between young people from Macao and the Greater Bay Area. A strategic position of the Guangdong-Macao in-depth cooperation zone in Hengqin is a new space that makes Macao residents' life and employment more convenient. The Macao SAR government is finding more ways for young people in Macao to work, start a business and live in the cooperation zone. We will continue supporting young people with innovative visions and those who want to work or start a business in the zone.

According to the general plan of building the Guangdong-Macao in-depth cooperation zone in Hengqin, four major industries will be prioritized including sci-tech research and development and high-end manufacturing to help Macao foster a more diverse industrial landscape. This will also offer Macao's young people more diversified employment opportunities and broader space for their development in Hengqin. Thank you.

Chen Wenjun:

Mr. John Lee Ka-chiu, please.

John Lee Ka-chiu:

Thank you. The Hong Kong SAR government welcomes the plan for comprehensively deepening the reform and opening up of the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone. In particular, we welcome the policy that makes it more convenient for young people from Hong Kong and Macao to study, work, stay, live, and start a business in the cooperation zone.

Young people represent the future, are a source of hope and stand as a pillar of society. They also drive long-term social and economic development. The Hong Kong SAR government pays close attention to the vitality of youth communities and has launched projects to facilitate exchanges, study, employment, and entrepreneurship for young people. We encourage them to broaden their horizons, understand our country's development through hands-on experience, and seize opportunities.

In terms of entrepreneurship, innovation and business startups are booming on the mainland this year, bringing numerous opportunities for Hong Kong's young people. Many Hong Kong companies have developed their businesses in Qianhai. Increasingly improved supportive measures have attracted a number of young people from Hong Kong to start businesses at the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Youth Innovation and Entrepreneur Hub (the Qianhai "dream works") and other bases for innovation and entrepreneurship. These bases have incubated many successful enterprises and are quite popular among Hong Kong's young business leaders. The Hong Kong SAR government has launched the Funding Scheme for Youth Entrepreneurship in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. It aims to offer entrepreneurial support and incubation services, as well as start-up capital to young Hong Kong residents who intend to start a business in Hong Kong and in mainland cities across the Greater Bay Area.  

In terms of employment, with support from the Guangdong provincial government, the Hong Kong SAR government launched the Greater Bay Area Youth Employment Scheme early this year to encourage and support Hong Kong university graduates to seize opportunities for career development in mainland cities in the Greater Bay Area (including Qianhai). The scheme has been met with an enthusiastic response, collecting nearly 3,500 job vacancies and more than 20,000 applications. Over 800 graduates have found jobs through the scheme, of which 530 are working in Shenzhen. The Hong Kong SAR government will proactively request feedback from both employers and employees to ensure the scheme achieves its intended results.

In terms of exchanges and internships, the Hong Kong SAR government will continue to optimize and expand various programs for both of these fields, in order to help young people better understand the national condition, as well as the job market, workplace culture, living environment and development opportunities on the mainland.

Looking forward, Qianhai will continue offering Hong Kong's younger generation excellent opportunities, and the Hong Kong SAR government will consistently improve relevant programs to help them better integrate into the country's overall development. Thank you.

Chen Wenjun:

Last but not least, Mr. Lin Keqing will give his answer.

Lin Keqing:

In recent years, we have been supporting young people across Hong Kong and Macao to work or start a business in Guangdong province through key platforms such as Hengqin and Qianhai. I will focus on three aspects in this regard.

First, we established and constructed platforms such as the "1+12+N" bases, which help young people from Hong Kong and Macao with innovation and entrepreneurship. For example, platforms such as the Qianhai "dream works" and Inno Valley HQ have fostered ideal hard environment and soft environment, which can provide Hong Kong and Macao's young people with a wide range of services, including exchanges, training, incubation, display and match-making.

Second, we implemented a series of policies to help Hong Kong and Macao's young people thrive. The policies include recruiting Hong Kong and Macao residents to government units and public institutions, mutually recognizing professional qualifications, coordinating social security schemes, and putting in place preferential individual income tax rates. All these will offer Hong Kong and Macao's young people more employment opportunities in Guangdong. In addition, we implemented policies to ensure they have equitable access to entrepreneurship and employment opportunities. We introduced specialized measures to support Hong Kong and Macao's young people as they navigate entrepreneurship, employment, and life in the cooperation zones. Those measures include "Measures to Support Hong Kong and Macao Young People with their Development in Qianhai" and "Interim Measures to Further Support Macao Young People with Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Hengqin."

Third, we promoted exchanges to give Hong Kong and Macao's young people a better understanding of the mainland. We organized activities such as the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Internship Program for Macao Youths and the Career and Internship Fair for University Students in Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. Likewise, we held start-up competitions such as "Community Entrepreneurs Cup" and "Makers in Guangdong" to attract more young people from Hong Kong and Macao, and encourage them to pursue programs in Guangdong. In addition, we organized publicity activities, entrepreneurship training, salons and job fairs to inspire Hong Kong and Macao's young people to participate in the development of the Greater Bay Area and find their place in the country's overall development.

Next, we will implement decisions and plans made by General Secretary Xi Jinping and the CPC Central Committee on developing the two cooperation zones, further improve policy systems and enhance policy coordination. We will upgrade platforms to attract resources and optimize services to increase efficiency. Through these measures, we aim to achieve more high-quality outcomes in helping Hong Kong and Macao's young people with their entrepreneurship and employment. Thank you.

Chen Wenjun:

Thank you, all the speakers. Thank you, friends from the media. That's all for today's press conference.

Translated and edited by Wang Yiming, Wang Qian, Zhu Bochen, Yuan Fang, Cui Can, Chen Xia, Qin Qi, Huang Shan, Dong Qingpei, Ma Yujia, Duan Yaying, Zhang Rui, Gong Yingchun, Wang Yanfang, Zhang Tingting, Liu Sitong, Zhang Liying, Li Xiao, David Ball, Jay Birbeck, Pittock Drew Anthony. In case of any discrepancy between the English and Chinese texts, the Chinese version is deemed to prevail.

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