Hong Kong aims to become international green technology and finance centre, says Commerce Secretary

The Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Algernon Yau (front row, first left), speaks at a discussion session entitled "Fostering Sustainable and Inclusive Trade in the Region, and other issues" at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting in Detroit, the United States, today.

27th May 2023 – (Detroit) The Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development of Hong Kong, Mr Algernon Yau, spoke at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting in Detroit, the United States, on 26th May, where he emphasised the need to ensure that trade benefits everyone in a sustainable manner. He also discussed Hong Kong’s commitment to green and sustainable policies in response to climate change and other challenges.

Mr Yau announced Hong Kong’s plan to set up a Green Technology and Finance Development Committee to formulate an action agenda for future endeavours. The goal is to accelerate Hong Kong’s development into an international green technology and finance centre. Additionally, Hong Kong is developing an active market for green and sustainable debt, including both bonds and loans, with the total amount issued in Hong Kong increasing by over 40% from 2021 to US$80.5 billion in 2022.

Mr Yau also emphasised Hong Kong’s efforts to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and their growth, innovation, and adoption of technology to embrace future opportunities. These efforts include funding programs to support SMEs’ brand building, operation upgrading, export marketing activities, and adoption of innovation and technology. Furthermore, Hong Kong is strengthening its support for the development of women and youth.

On achieving a resilient transition to a more sustainable and inclusive regional economy, Mr Yau shared his insights on the collective efforts in deepening economic integration, such as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, which he believes hold great promise for overcoming divisions and bolstering connectivity. He also called on member economies to keep up momentum and accelerate discussions on the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific.

During the APEC meeting, Mr Yau held a bilateral meeting with the Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism of Peru, Mr Juan Carlos Matthews Salazar, to discuss various trade and economic issues.

Hong Kong’s commitment to green and sustainable policies is in line with global efforts to combat climate change and promote sustainable development. As a global financial centre, Hong Kong is well-positioned to lead the way in sustainable finance and green technology. The establishment of the Green Technology and Finance Development Committee is a significant step towards this goal.

The emphasis on supporting SMEs, women, and youth also highlights Hong Kong’s commitment to inclusive growth and development. By providing support for these groups, Hong Kong is working towards creating a more equitable and balanced economy.

Mr Yau’s insights on achieving a resilient transition to a more sustainable and inclusive regional economy are particularly relevant in the current global context. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for economic resilience and the importance of sustainable and inclusive growth. APEC’s efforts to deepen economic integration and connect member economies can play a crucial role in achieving these goals.