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Trade and Industry Department The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Brand Hong Kong - Asia world city

Speeches

"Opportunities for the Business Sector in a Changing Global Business Environment"
(1 March 2001)

Luncheon Speaker: Mr Peter Woo, Chairman, Hong Kong Trade Development Council

Remarks by DGTI

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am very pleased to see you all at the conference this morning and at this luncheon. This is the second time the Trade and Industry Department organised a conference on developments on the WTO front. It is a very important part of our efforts to encourage discussions in our business sector on how best to leverage on China's imminent accession to the WTO.

2. I hope you have enjoyed the morning session. I am sure we are all very grateful to our speakers for their most stimulating presentations. I myself have also found the exchanges between the panelists and the participants from the floor most thought-provoking.

3. Global activities are increasingly technology-driven. Rapid technological development as well as the emergence of the Internet and e-commerce have greatly reshaped the global business environment and the mode of doing business in the last decade. As we discussed in the morning session, China's entry into the WTO, which we have all been awaiting in earnest, will bring about both new challenges and opportunities to businessmen from all over the world. How will Hong Kong maintain its competitive edge in this dynamic environment? What are the opportunities lying ahead for Hong Kong? Today's conference aims to shed some light on these very interesting and important questions.

4. It therefore gives me great pleasure to introduce to you our luncheon guest speaker Mr Peter Woo, Chairman of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council. Mr Woo as one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Hong Kong and with his wide ranging public service barely needs any introduction from me. He was the Chairman of Hong Kong Hospital Authority from 1995 to 2000 when fundamental modernisation reforms took place in our public hospitals. He was also the Council Chairman of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University from 1993 to 1997, an important period for the Polytechnic in its full-scale transformation into a key university in Hong Kong. Under his chairmanship, the Trade Development Council will continue to play an important role to assist our businessmen to cope with globalisation and to promote our trade.

5. Today, Mr Woo will share with us his insights on how HK trade can keep growing in the context of globalisation and China's accession to the WTO. Mr Woo has kindly agreed to take a few questions from the floor after his speech.

6. Ladies & Gentlemen, would you now please join me in welcoming our guest speaker Mr Peter Woo. Peter, please.

[After Peter Woo's speech and Q&A]

Thank you, Peter. As a token of our appreciation, may I present to you a souvenir on behalf of the Department.

2. Ladies and Gentlemen, after the relaxing lunch and Peter's very interesting speech, we shall now proceed to the afternoon sessions, which will focus on selected industries and sectors to allow for more in-depth and interactive discussions.

3. Before we break for the different sessions, I would like to thank all our distinguished speakers and panelists here today for sharing with us their valuable experience and insight. My appreciation also goes to the moderator of the Conference, Professor James Cameron, who has, as always, been excellent in moderating the discussions. Last but not least, I must thank all of you for your support for this conference. I hope you will find the break-out sessions equally stimulating.