LegCo Affairs - Questions
把握「一帶一路」策略帶來的商機 Grasping opportunities brought by the Belt and Road Initiative


 

以下是立法會會議上盧偉國議員的提問和署理商務及經濟發展局局長陳百里博士的答覆︰

 
問題:
 
  上月三日,政府聯同一帶一路總商會在北京舉辦了一個論壇,向中央部委和國有企業推介如何借助香港高度國際化的平台及香港在金融、專業服務、商貿等領域的獨特優勢,建立策略夥伴關係,共同開拓「一帶一路」策略帶來的商機。就此,政府可否告知本會:
 
(一)鑑於一帶一路總商會有意建立一個有關華資在「一帶一路」沿線國家及地區投資情況的數據庫,以協助企業尋找投資或發展機會,政府會否就此給予總商會支援;如會,詳情為何;如否,原因為何;
 
(二)鑑於現時七十多個「一帶一路」沿線國家及地區各有不同的法制、稅制及投資環境,政府會否考慮加強與本港及內地學術機構的合作,向參與「一帶一路」相關工作的官員和企業負責人,提供有關當地法律、金融、航運、管理及專業服務等方面的資訊;及
 
(三)鑑於有不少曾到「一帶一路」沿線國家及地區投資的港商,與當地人士發生商業糾紛後求助無門,政府會否設立專門的渠道,為遇到這種情況的港商提供支援;如會,詳情為何;如否,原因為何?
 
答覆:
 
主席:
 
  「一帶一路」倡議是香港經濟發展的新動力,本屆政府一直積極推行政策和措施以善用「一帶一路」建設所帶來的機遇。根據二○一七年十二月簽署的《國家發展和改革委員會與香港特別行政區政府關於支持香港全面參與和助力「一帶一路」建設的安排》(《安排》),我們會加強與中央政府的溝通和合作,跟進落實《安排》內的措施,包括推動香港與內地企業建立策略夥伴關係。政府在本年二月聯同一帶一路總商會在北京舉辦了以國有企業為對象的大型論壇,主題為「國家所需、香港所長」,以促進內地與香港企業及專業服務對接,論壇成果理想。
 
  就盧偉國議員的提問,我現回覆如下:
 
(一)政府推進香港參與「一帶一路」建設工作,其中重點之一是透過不同途徑與相關企業/專業團體和商會等合作,爲香港企業和專業界別拓展「一帶一路」商機,包括聯合舉辦會議和研討會,以及到内地和「一帶一路」相關地區推廣香港優勢等,上述在北京的論壇就是其中一個例子。此外,政府每年都與香港貿易發展局(貿發局)聯合主辦「一帶一路高峰論壇」,支持貿發局的「一帶一路」投資及商貿配對工作;今年的論壇以「全方位合作」為主題,探討政府和企業之間更廣泛、深入和密切的合作,對成功落實「一帶一路」項目的重要性。
 
  另一方面,政府有多項資助計劃可支援企業和團體推展「一帶一路」建設的工作。二○一六年十一月政府推出的「專業服務協進支援計劃」,資助推行由業界主導的非牟利項目,協助本港專業服務行業與境外市場(包括「一帶一路」相關地區)相類行業加強交流和合作,推動相關的推廣活動,並提升專業服務水平和對外競爭力。由工業貿易署推行的「中小企業市場推廣基金」(推廣基金)及「中小企業發展支援基金」,分別資助中小企業拓展包括「一帶一路」的境外市場,及提升行業競爭力。
 
  東南亞國家聯盟(東盟)成員國是「一帶一路」的重要參與夥伴。政府與東盟去年十一月簽訂《自由貿易協定》和相關《投資協定》,東盟是香港重要的「一帶一路」市場。為加強對業界的支援,政府在今年的《財政預算案》建議將推廣基金的企業累計資助上限,由二十萬元增至四十萬元,並取消現時最後五萬元資助額的使用條件限制;亦為「發展品牌、升級轉型及拓展內銷市場的專項基金」注資十五億元,並將基金下的企業支援計劃的資助地域範圍由內地擴大至「一帶一路」的東盟地區。
 
(二)為向業界提供最新的「一帶一路」資訊,政府現與貿發局合作,加強和提升其「一帶一路」網站的功能,以期它可作為提供最新和最全面「一帶一路」資料的一站式平台﹔貿發局亦同時會研究提供線上和線下商業配對服務,協助企業尋找合適的「一帶一路」項目。
 
  政府部門、半官方機構、學術機構、商會和專業團體等,也不時舉辦論壇、會議、研討會、路演和考察團等活動,為持份者提供有關「一帶一路」倡議的最新資訊。政府亦不時率領業界到「一帶一路」沿線和相關國家及地區考察和推廣,例如商務及經濟發展局局長剛於本月十九至二十三日率領一個商界和專業界別組成的代表團訪問柬埔寨和越南,並與當地主管工商業和建設投資的官員會面,代表團不但能深入了解當地市場發展最新情況,亦促進了本港企業和專業團體與當地企業的對接及合作。
 
  在培訓方面,香港多個專業團體和機構,例如港鐵學院、香港國際航空學院、香港法律專業學會等,亦有為本地和區內(包括「一帶一路」相關地區)人士提供法律、調解、鐵路管理和營運、空運管理等多方面的專業培訓,既有助提升本地和「一帶一路」地區人才的專業水平,也可鞏固香港專業服務的國際地位。
 
(三)「一帶一路」建設的其中一項原則為遵從市場規律,由市場決定資源配置。企業追求合理回報的同時,應審慎管理風險,而政府主要發揮促進和保障貿易投資的作用。
 
  如有港商在外地營商時遇到困難,可向香港政府的海外經濟貿易辦事處(經貿辦)求助,經貿辦會因應個案的情況盡量提供協助。經貿辦一般不會介入私人性質的商業糾紛。現時,香港有十二個經貿辦覆蓋範圍已經包括「一帶一路」沿線不少國家及地區,我們會進一步拓展海外經貿辦網絡。貿發局在全球亦設有四十七個辦事處,若收到中小企求助,也會轉介予合適的機構跟進。政府亦通過推動高層互訪,締結自由貿易協定和保護投資協議等,積極與「一帶一路」沿線市場加強經貿聯繫,為業界提供投資保障。 

 Following is a question by the Hon Lo Wai-kwok and a reply by the Acting Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Dr Bernard Chan, in the Legislative Council:

Question:

     On the 3rd of last month, the Government held, in collaboration with the Belt and Road General Chamber of Commerce (BRGCC), a seminar in Beijing, which aimed to promote to the Mainland ministries and state-owned enterprises ways to make use of Hong Kong's highly internationalised platform and Hong Kong's distinctive edge in areas such as finance, professional services, commerce and trade, for forming strategic partnerships to jointly pursue the opportunities being brought about by the Belt and Road Initiative. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(1)  as BRGCC intends to establish a database on Chinese-funded investments in the countries and regions along the Belt and Road so as to help enterprises explore opportunities for investment or development, whether the Government will provide support to BRGCC in this regard; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that; 

(2)  given that the existing 70-odd countries and regions along the Belt and Road have different legal and tax regimes as well as investment environment, whether the Government will consider strengthening its collaboration with the academic institutions in Hong Kong and on the Mainland to provide the government officials and the persons-in-charge of enterprises who are involved in Belt and Road-related work with information on aspects such as law, finance, maritime, management and professional services in such countries and regions; and

(3)  as quite a number of Hong Kong businessmen who had once invested in the countries and regions along the Belt and Road had nowhere to turn to for assistance after commercial disputes with local people had arisen, whether the Government will set up a dedicated channel to provide assistance for those Hong Kong businessmen who are caught in such situations; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that?
 
Reply:

President,

     The Belt and Road Initiative (B&RI) is a new engine for Hong Kong's economic growth.  The current term Government has been proactively implementing policies and measures to seize the opportunities brought by the B&RI.  According to the "Arrangement between the National Development and Reform Commission and the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region for Advancing Hong Kong's Full Participation in and Contribution to the Belt and Road Initiative" (the Arrangement) signed in December 2017, we will enhance communication and co-operation with the Central Authorities, and take forward the various areas of work in the Arrangement, which include promoting strategic partnership between Hong Kong and Mainland enterprises. In February this year, the Government organised a large-scale seminar under the theme of "Leveraging Hong Kong’s Advantages, Meeting the Country's Needs" in conjunction with the Belt and Road General Chamber of Commerce in Beijing, which sought to facilitate establishment of direct contact between enterprises and professionals in the Mainland and Hong Kong. The seminar had been a success.

     Replies to the various parts of the Hon Lo Wai-kwok's questions are as follows:

(1) As a focus of work in promoting participation in the B&RI, the Government has been seeking collaboration with relevant enterprises/professional associations and chambers of commerce through various means with a view to exploring B&RI business opportunities for companies and professional services sectors of Hong Kong. Such includes co-organising conferences and seminars, and visits to the Mainland and Belt and Road related regions to promote the advantages of Hong Kong. The above-mentioned seminar staged in Beijing is one of the examples. In addition, the Government has co-organised with the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) the annual Belt and Road Summit, and supported HKTDC’s work in B&RI related investment and business matching. This year’s focus will be about “Collaborate for Success” to highlight the importance of wider, deeper and closer collaboration among governments and businesses for successful implementation of Belt and Road projects.

     Besides, the Government has put in place a number of funding schemes which may support enterprises and organisations in taking forward work related to the B&RI. The Professional Services Advancement Support Scheme launched by the Government in November 2016 provides funding support for the implementation of industry-led non-profit-making projects which aim to increase the exchanges and co-operation of Hong Kong’s professional services with their counterparts in external markets (including Belt and Road related regions), promote relevant publicity activities, and enhance their standards and external competitiveness. The SME Export Marketing Fund (EMF) and the SME Development Fund which are being administered by the Trade and Industry Department provide financial assistance to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) respectively to expand their markets outside Hong Kong including in the Belt and Road, and enhance trade competitiveness.

     Member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) are important Belt and Road partners. In November last year, the Government signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and a related Investment Agreement with ASEAN, which is an important Belt and Road market of Hong Kong. To further strengthen industry support, the Government has proposed in this year’s Budget to increase the cumulative funding ceiling for enterprises under EMF from $200,000 to $400,000, and remove the existing condition on the use of the last $50,000 of grants. At the same time, it is proposed that $1.5 billion be injected into Dedicated Fund on Branding, Upgrading and Domestic Sales (BUD Fund) and that the geographical scope of the Enterprise Support Programme under the BUD Fund be extended from the Mainland to also include the B&RI related ASEAN region.

(2) To provide the industry with latest information on the B&RI, the Government is collaborating with HKTDC to enhance the function of its Belt and Road portal with a view to making it a one-stop platform for the latest and most comprehensive information on the B&RI. At the same time, HKTDC is looking into the possibility of offering online and offline business matching services to assist enterprises in identifying suitable Belt and Road projects.

     Such activities as fora, conferences, seminars, roadshows and missions are organised by Government bureaux and departments, quasi-government bodies, academic institutions, chambers of commerce, and professional associations, etc., from time to time to provide stakeholders with the latest information on the B&RI. The Government also led trade and promotional missions to countries and regions along and related to Belt and Road.  For instance, the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development just from March 19 to 23 led a business and professional mission to visit Cambodia and Vietnam, and met with local government officials responsible for commerce and industry, investment and infrastructure development. The delegation not only gained better understanding of the latest local market situation, but also fostered connection and co-operation between Hong Kong enterprises and professional associations with local enterprises thereof.

     In terms of training, many professional associations and organisations in Hong Kong, such as the MTR Academy, the Hong Kong International Aviation Academy, and the Hong Kong Academy of Law, etc., have been providing professional training in areas of legal, mediation, railway management and operation, aviation management, etc., for nurturing local talents and in the Belt and Road related regions. Such efforts not only help enhance their professionalism, but also raise the international status of Hong Kong's professional services.

(3) One of the underlying principles in pursuing the B&RI is to follow the market rule, with allocation of resources to be decided by the market. While enterprises would seek reasonable returns on their investment, the associated risks should also be prudently managed. The primary function of the Government is on trade and investment promotion and protection.

     When Hong Kong enterprises encounter difficulties in conducting business activities outside Hong Kong, assistance may be sought from our overseas Economic and Trade Offices (ETOs), which will make their best endeavour to provide assistance on the basis of each case.  Generally, the ETOs would not intervene in private commercial disputes. We have currently set up 12 overseas ETOs which cover a good number of countries and regions along the Belt and Road, and we will further expand our overseas ETOs network. HKTDC also has 47 offices globally, which will also refer requests for assistance from Hong Kong SMEs to appropriate authorities for following up. As well, the Government has been actively strengthening economic and trade ties with the economies along the Belt and Road, by promoting mutual visits of senior officials, and forging bilateral agreements such as FTAs and Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements with a view to providing investment protection for Hong Kong enterprises. 

 

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立法會盧偉國議員 博士 工程師 (工程界)
Legislative Council Ir Dr Hon Lo Wai Kwok (Functional Constituency - Engineering)