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Time:March 23-25, 2019
Beijing Diaoyutai State Guesthouse
Sponsor:Development Research Center of the State Council
Organiser:China Development Research Foundation
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2018丨【MTR】Leverage MTR’s Strength, Serve the Country’s Needs, and Contribute to the Globalized Belt and Road Initiative

In the context of complicated geo-politic situations, ubiquitous economic and financial risks, we have been witnessing increased tension between globalization and de-globalization, and the need of reforming the global governance becomes more acute. Being the second biggest economy and a responsible large country, Chinese President Xi Jinping first proposed the significant Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st – Century Maritime Silk Road, creating a new realm in which China engages in and leads worldwide opening-up drive, setting up a new platform for international co-operation, and adding new energy to common development. The Belt and Road Initiative is indeed a grand vision on global prosperity and international community of shared future. Thanks to the efforts of all parties, this important co-operation initiative has been transformed from pure concepts into executable actions, and from vision into reality. A new chapter featuring common development of the world is written. The achievements are evident to all and the future is rather exciting.

The Belt and Road Initiative is a grand system-wide agenda. There are five connectivity at the core of the Initiative. The five connectivity refers to the connectivity of policies, infrastructures, trade, finance and people. Now the Initiative is being implemented into greater depth and width. Considering geo-politics, language and culture, religion and customs, economic environment, commercial rules, legal regimes and differences in industry standards, and learning the experiences of overseas investment by Chinese companies in the past, we believe the two most difficult elements are financial connection and talent cultivation.

As one of the most open economies in the world, Hong Kong enjoys locational and first-mover advantage as the leader in the opening-up and co-operation drive. It offers specialized services and has close people-to-people and cultural ties to the Chinese mainland. Hong Kong is a free and open economy. In particular, it boasts a leading financial sector which has full-fledged system and infrastructure, well-designed regulatory and judicial regime, abundant talents, and therefore is uniquely positioned to contribute to the Belt and Road Initiative by helping tackle the two challenges of financial connectivity and talent cultivation.

A company of which the SAR government is the controlling shareholder, MTR is the backbone transport infrastructure developer and public transport service provider in Hong Kong, a leading cross-border rail transit operator in the global market, as well as the only Chinese company operating rail transit system in advanced countries. MTR is willing and ready to contribute to the Belt and Road Initiative. First, we will continue the business model of sustainable development and help tackle the funding challenges facing Belt and Road infrastructure projects. Second, having been working successfully in western markets, MTR can help Chinese companies explore opportunities of providing rail transit operational services in international markets with its international expertise and experiences. Third, we set up the MTR Academy to meet the need of talent cultivation for the Belt and Road route countries.