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MAY 23 - 30, 2023

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Restoration of fully functional WTO dispute settlement system urged

Hong Kong’s Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Algernon Yau stressed the importance of restoring a fully functional World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute settlement system by 2024 when he spoke at a discussion session entitled “Supporting the Multilateral Trading System” (May 25) at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministers Responsible for Trade Meeting in Detroit. He also highlighted the importance of bringing early into force WTO-negotiated outcomes to demonstrate that the WTO is working for the benefit of people. Speaking at a separate discussion session “Fostering Sustainable & Inclusive Trade in the Region, and other issues” (May 26), Mr Yau said Hong Kong is committed to ensuring its policies are green and sustainable in the face of climate change and other challenges as the city forged ahead to become an international green technology and finance center. Hong Kong is also stepping up support measures for small and medium-sized enterprises. En-route to Detroit, Mr Yau visited the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York to learn about the work of the office and met with interlocutors to update them on the latest developments in Hong Kong. 


Hong Kong and UAE central banks to strengthen ties

The Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said (May 29) they plan to strengthen cooperation in financial infrastructure, financial market connectivity between the two jurisdictions and virtual asset regulations and developments. In addition, the two central banks facilitated discussions between their respective innovation hubs on joint fintech development initiatives and knowledge sharing efforts.


Visa application procedures adjusted

Starting from June 19, Hong Kong will adjust the application procedures for entry of other visa/entry permits for dependents, foreign domestic helpers, imported workers, students, training and working holiday. Applicants will be required to declare whether they have any criminal convictions when they apply for the relevant entry visa/entry permits. As a transitional arrangement, the Immigration Department will continue to process applications that reach the department on or before June 18, regardless of whether declaration on criminal convictions has been made.


Hong Kong artists awarded New York fellowships

Two Hong Kong artists will travel to New York under the HKETONY-ACC fellowship program, administered by ACC Hong Kong. Art book editor Lin On Yeung will travel to New York this summer to learn more about artists’ books and indie publishing culture in the city. Visual artist Yan Wai Yin will take up a 6-month New York fellowship in 2024 to research experimental filmmaking with a particular focus on short films and animations.


April exports value down 13%

The value of Hong Kong's total exports fell to US$43.3 billion in April, down 13% year-on-year. The value of imports of goods dropped 11.9% to US$48 billion for the same period, resulting in a trade deficit of US$4.7 billion, or 9.8% of the value of imports. Exports to the Mainland, the US and the European Union all shrank and exports to other major Asian markets recorded decreases of varying degrees. Looking ahead, the weakness in the advanced economies would continue to weigh on Hong Kong’s export performance, though the expected faster recovery of the Mainland economy should provide some relief.


Amnesty International urged to apologize

The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government noted that Amnesty International, on May 30, corrected on its website an earlier allegation that a Uyghur person went missing after arriving in Hong Kong and demanded an apology from the organization for the fabricated remarks.  Amnesty International confirmed the Uyghur person had not gone to the city, but it did not apologize for its unfounded, despicable and fallacious remarks which maliciously smear the HKSAR Government.


Hong Kong and its Basic Law

The Basic Law (BL) is the constitutional document of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). It provides the guarantees to maintain our existing way of life, including socio-economic development, the rights and duties of Hong Kong people, the rule of law and other areas. The Basic Law was put into effect on July 1, 1997.


Q: Have the laws previously in force in Hong Kong been maintained?

A: The Basic Law provides that laws previously in force in Hong Kong, that is, the common law, rules of equity, ordinances, subordinate legislation and customary law, shall be maintained and adopted as laws of the HKSAR, except for any that contravenes the Basic Law, and subject to any amendment by the HKSAR legislature. (BL Articles 8; 18; 160)

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