Lee: Hong Kong starts new chapter of digital economy

Zhang Tianyuan

Lee: Hong Kong starts new chapter of digital economy

Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu struck an optimistic tone about the city's transition to a digital economy, citing its advantageous geographical location and support from national strategies.

“We are now to start a new chapter of the digital economy,” the city’s leader said on Thursday during the opening ceremony of the two-day Digital Economy Summit.

The financial hub is transforming in line with the central government's ambition to increase the nation's scientific and technological capabilities.

Lee noted that President Xi Jinping emphasized the importance of innovation in the country's development strategy during last month's 14th National People's Congress in Beijing.

“Under the unique principle of ‘one country, two systems’, Hong Kong enjoys the unparalleled advantage of having the strong support of national strategies while being connected with the rest of the world,” Lee said.

He also noted that Hong Kong’s digital economy development is supported by the nation’s 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25) and the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, which are expected to help the city become an international innovation center.

Lee highlighted that the widespread adoption of digital technologies had transformed traditional ways of conducting business during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“From e-commerce and online education to remote work and smart city innovations, … the digital economy offers a way forward for businesses and individuals, providing opportunities for growth and proceeding in the face of uncertainties,” he said.

Lee noted the summit is the first in-person mega event in the field of innovation and technology organized by the local government since the financial hub reconnected to the world after the pandemic.

The annual event, organized by the Hong Kong government and Cyberport, aims to bring together entrepreneurs, policymakers, and academics to share their insights on topics such as smart cities, data innovation, fintech, Web 3.0, artificial intelligence and big data, smart mobility, as well as new industrialization.

Sun Dong, secretary for innovation, technology and industry; Cao Shumin, deputy director of the Cyberspace Administration of China; and Chen Dong, deputy director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region attended the kickoff ceremony.