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Leverage Hong Kong's Advantage to Provide Strong Financial Support to the Joint Construction of One Belt and One Road Initiative


By Li Wei, Development Research Center of the State Council (DRC)

The joint construction of One Belt and One Road initiative bears an extraordinary significance to Hong Kong SAR, Chinese mainland and the world as a whole. To begin with, the joint construction of One Belt and One Road initiative could facilitate policy communication among relevant economies, the elimination of barriers to the flow of products and factors and the world's early recovery from financial crisis. Secondly, it could also help to expand China's product market and give full play to the comparative advantages such as infrastructure building, talents and technology, thus widening access to more gains from outbound investment. Moreover, it will inject vitality into the development of Hong Kong, a crucial bridgehead for Chinese mainland to expand its overseas presence.

To get better engaged in the joint construction of One Belt and One Road initiative, Hong Kong should have a clear understanding of the basic manifestations and major characteristics of the initiative. The vision of One Belt and One Road initiative embraces the principle of openness and inclusiveness, making the cooperation to be more wide-ranging by breaking the limitations of regional and fragmented collaboration. Besides, cooperation will be conducted on a more equal footing based on the principle of consultation, joint construction and common sharing. And the domain of cooperation will be broadened to basically five respects, namely, policy communication, infrastructure connectivity, trade facilitation, financing and civil exchanges, encompassing economic, social, cultural, scientific, technological and ecological areas.

To seize the opportunities brought about by the construction of One Belt and One Road initiative, it is essential for Hong Kong to utilize its advantages in international financial industry based on the existing opening-up system. In order to fulfill this target, China should build a Hong Kong-based global financing system to fund for the infrastructure construction of One Belt and One Road initiative, enhance the role of Hong Kong as a platform to expand the use of RMB internationally and build it into a RMB offshore center, actively promote its cooperation with Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the Silk Road Fund and widen collaboration of commercial and financial institutions in both Hong Kong and Chinese mainland.