SCED speaks on Hong Kong, China - Australia FTA negotiations
Following is the transcript of remarks by the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, after attending the official launch of the Hong Kong, China - Australia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations today (May 16):
Reporter: Is the MTR Corporation going to be part of the negotiations?
Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development: We don't have a specific entity in terms of being part of any negotiations. Free Trade Agreement will be open to all industries. We are in the middle of the consultation exercise. We will hear from the industries, what are the areas that they would like us to focus on, and that will be taken into consideration. But I am not aware of any particular stakeholder having a particular area of interest, yet the consultation is open.
Reporter: Is there any plan to start CDTA (Comprehensive Double Taxation Agreement) negotiations between Hong Kong and Australia?
Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development: This is an FTA, and we will be looking at all avenues for further collaboration with other economies including Australia, to the extent that this will encourage more trade and investment. I speak for Hong Kong, that we are very open to such arrangement.
Reporter: Is there any obstacle hindering the start of the negotiations of the CDTA?
Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development: I just said we are very open to this (FTA), to the extent that it will be conducive to more trade and investment. We are all for it.
(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)
Ends/Tuesday, May 16, 2017