Speech at Panel on Commerce and Industry

Proposed creation of directorate posts for the new Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Development Office

Proposed ranking of the Commissioner for the Development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong Macao Greater Bay Area

As regards Mr CHAN Chun-ying’s enquiry on the details of the performance measurements to be taken for the proposed CGBA, PSCMA advised that since the proposed CGBA would be required to play an active role in the central coordination with the senior echelons of the Government and intensive interaction with senior officials in central and provincial authorities, it might not be practical to set specific targets or performance indicators for the proposed CGBA. The key was his/her work in securing the required policy breakthrough and innovation in taking forward the development of the Greater Bay Area.

Terms of office

The Chairman and Mr CHAN Chun-ying supported the Administration’s proposal for the directorate establishment at the dedicated Greater Bay Area Development Office. Given that the development of the Greater Bay Area would be a long term national strategy and the Outline Development Plan had covered the period up to 2035, the Chairman enquired about the rationales for not creating the two proposed directorate posts on a permanent basis. The Chairman also sought clarification on whether the proposed posts of CGBA and ACGBA(1) were intended to be a part of the Administration’s interim measure only that the issues to be handled by the Greater Bay Area Development Office would eventually be taken up by different government bureaux/departments (“B/Ds”) upon the expiry of the two posts. Mr CHAN shared a similar concern and enquired about the reasons for creating the 17 additional non-directorate time-limited posts.

PSCMA responded that the Outline Development Plan covered the period up to 2022 in the immediate term, extending to 2035 in the long term. While recognizing the work pertaining to the development of the Greater Bay Area Development would last for a long term, the Administration had taken a prudent approach by first creating the supernumerary directorate posts and time-limited non-directorate posts. The long term need of manpower and a dedicated Office would be reviewed nearer the time having regard to the work arising from the progress and development of the Greater Bay Area. SCMA advised that the Administration would make use of the experience to be accumulated in the next four years to evaluate the long term manpower needs of the Greater Bay Area Development Office and seek approval from the Legislative Council on its long term establishment proposal at the appropriate juncture.

Publicity efforts to promote the development of the Greater Bay Area

Mr CHAN Chun-ying noted that the proposed CGBA would act as the head of the Greater Bay Area Development Office to formulate overall public relations strategy locally and overseas in support of Hong Kong’s participation in the development of Greater Bay Area. Given that the development was still at an initial stage, he enquired whether the CGBA post would in the immediate term up to 2022 focus its resources on publicity efforts locally and within the Greater Bay Area cities, but not internationally.

PSCMA replied that the development of the Greater Bay Area had drawn worldwide attention. Following the promulgation of the Outline Development Plan, the Administration would continue to promote to the international community both the opportunities to be brought by the Greater Bay Area development and Hong Kong’s industries with competitive edge, such as the professional services. The Chief Executive (“CE”) and other principal officials had been promoting the Greater Bay Area through overseas visits. For example, CE had led a delegation to visit France in June 2018 to promote the opportunities brought by the Greater Bay Area development together with the Vice Governor of Guangdong Province and the President of the Macao Trade and Investment Promotion Institute of the Macao Special Administrative Region (“SAR”). CE would embark on another visit to Japan in April 2019 to further promote the Greater Bay Area Development.