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HK deputies urged to focus on youth

He Shusi/Chai Hua
Updated: Mar 7,2019 7:25 AM     China Daily

Vice-Premier Han Zheng, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, joins panel discussions by lawmakers from Hong Kong at the second session of the 13th National People’s Congress in Beijing, capital of China, March 6, 2019.[Photo/Xinhua]

Vice-Premier Han Zheng called upon national legislators from Hong Kong on March 6 to pay special attention to the city’s youth, to help them grasp opportunities presented by the country’s major strategies.

Han, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, focused on the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

He made the remarks during a closed-door meeting with 36 Hong Kong deputies to the National People’s Congress, the country’s top legislature, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

According to Hong Kong NPC deputy Wong Yuk-shan, who was in the closed meeting, Han said the younger generation will be the major driving force in the development of both the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the nation.

Another NPC deputy from Hong Kong, Ma Fung-kwok, said all deputies should take the initiative to listen to the voices of the younger generation and encourage them to participate in the country’s development.

Han told deputies to treat young people as their own children, put themselves into their shoes and communicate with them in ways they understand, Wong said.

Saying that the Greater Bay Area blueprint provides a steppingstone for Hong Kong’s development, Han pledged that the central government will release additional measures to support the younger generation.

Those measures will include more funding, subsidies and career opportunities, Han said. He hoped the moves will signal to Hong Kong’s young people that the Greater Bay Area blueprint can help them.

In a separate meeting of deputies from Guangdong province, senior officials vowed to deepen cooperation with Hong Kong by establishing more cross-border connections and linking the two sides’ trade and professional qualification standards.

Li Xi, Party chief of Guangdong, said the province will take the needs of Hong Kong into full consideration when designing cooperative projects.

The Nansha Pilot Free Trade Zone in Guangzhou focuses on technological innovation with Hong Kong and Macao, while the Qianhai Pilot FTZ in Shenzhen tilts toward working with Hong Kong’s service industry, he noted, adding that the development of Hengqin in Zhuhai should serve Macao’s needs.

Li said that a series of cooperation projects are in the pipeline, including an international commercial bank dedicated to the Bay Area’s development, joint investment institutions and development funds.

Guangzhou Mayor Wen Guohui said one of the city’s primary tasks now is to promote a professional qualification recognition system jointly with Hong Kong.

“We have recognized 16 kinds of vocational certificates issued by Hong Kong and realized mutual recognition in six professions, including registered architects and real estate appraisers,” he said.