HKTDC "In Style, Hong Kong" Opens in Ho Chi Minh City
The Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) launched its international mega-promotions "In Style, Hong Kong Symposium" and "In Style, Hong Kong Expo" at GEM Center in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam last week. S
enior officials from Vietnam, as well as Paul Chan, Financial Secretary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), and Vincent HS Lo, Chairman of the HKTDC, officiated at the symposium opening.
"For decades Hong Kong has been a partner to Vietnam in many ways," Lo said. "As the world's focus falls on Asia, now is the time to deepen our partnership and expand our collaboration." He added that there will be more opportunities to expand not only the flows in trade and investment, but also in talent, expertise and social and cultural aspects.
"Over the past five years, merchandise trade between Hong Kong and Vietnam has grown, on average, almost 10% a year. There's also a strong Hong Kong business community in Vietnam, ranging from garment manufacturing to property development and investment banking," Chan said.
He also underlined Hong Kong's strengths as the world's leading financial centre in Asia, and highlighted that the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Bay Area Development creates additional opportunities for Hong Kong as well as the countries and companies that work with the city.
Le Hoai Trung, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam, and Le Thanh Liem, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Ho Chi Minh City, were guests of honour at the event." 'In Style, Hong Kong' 2018 attracts Hong Kong and Vietnam businesses participants in. This is the vivid evidence that we both attach great focus on economic cooperation between Hong Kong and Vietnam," Trung said.
The symposium promoted Hong Kong's multi-faceted advantages as a regional hub in Asia and spotlighted the city's strength in professional services.
Moderated by HKTDC Director of Research Nicholas Kwan, the main symposium featured Hong Kong business leaders including Jonathan Choi, Chairman of Sunwah Group, John Cheh, Vice-Chairman and CEO of Esquel Group, and Wallace Lam, Managing Director, Co-head of Global Banking, HSBC Hong Kong, who shared practical insights on the opportunities presented by the Hong Kong-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement and discussed how both regions could collaborate to stay competitive and expand their global businesses together.
The thematic sessions highlighted opportunities in cross-border e-commerce and discussed how Hong Kong's strengths in logistics services, as well as creative design, branding strategy and licensing solutions, can help Vietnamese enterprises upgrade their business in Asia.
To meet growing demand from Vietnamese companies, a Business Support Zone was set up where 11 Hong Kong services providers from various fields - including design and branding, accounting, logistics, information technology, architecture and management consultancy - delivered free on-site business consultation services to participants from Vietnam and other ASEAN countries.
The two-day "In Style, Hong Kong Expo" (20-21 Sept) connects importers, distributors, retailers, e-tailers, mail-order houses, department stores and specialised shops in Vietnam and neighbouring ASEAN countries with Hong Kong companies. Product zones include Activewear and Fashion, Gourmet and Delicacies, Fashion Accessories, Premium Houseware, Gifts and Toys, Fine Jewellery, Electronics, and Watches and Clocks.
Vietnam is Hong Kong's largest export market among ASEAN members and sixth-largest export market globally, taking in US$10.2 billion worth of exports from the city in 2017. Vietnam was also Hong Kong's 10th-largest trading partner in 2017 and the first seven months of 2018. Last year, trade volume between Vietnam and Hong Kong amounted to US$18.11 billion, an 11.7% increase year-on-year. Key areas of Hong Kong and Vietnam cooperation include manufacturing, logistics, food and seafood processing, hotels and hospitality.