Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of China’s Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong (HK), will conclude her seven-day tour of southwestern Chinese cities today.
Lam attended high-level meetings with city and provincial leaders over the past week in Chengdu, Chongqing and Xi’an, including inspections of HK investment projects in Chongqing on September 24. This region has been targeted by President Xi Jinping for significant development.
The tour highlights Lam’s strategy to increase HK’s economic integration with the rest of China. HK comprises the largest share of external investment—56%—in Chongqing, a mega-city of 31 million people. Chongqing’s financial sector is fuelled by HK’s capital markets—including HK’s Dah Sing bank, which owns a 17% stake in the Bank of Chongqing. This, in turn, funds the growth of start-ups in the many special investment zones in the city and has attracted 296 of the world’s top-500 companies like Hewlett Packard to set up manufacturing hubs in Chongqing.
Expect HK investment in Chongqing to increase in the short- to medium-term, on the back of Chongqing’s continued growth as an inland finance and logistics hub linking China with European markets—Germany constitutes 10.5% of Chongqing’s export market—via Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative.
John is a Senior Analyst with an interest in Indo-Pacific geopolitics. Master of International Relations (Australian National University) graduate with study focus on the Indo-Pacific. Qualified lawyer (University of Auckland, NZ) with experience in post-colonial Pacific & NZ legal systems.