Dr Charles YEUNG (Chairman of the 48th, 49th terms of office) June 2015
With Hong Kong’s constitutional development about to enter the critical phase, the CGCC and a vast majority in the business community are in favour of the package put forward by the HKSAR Government on the “Method for Selecting the Chief Executive by Universal Suffrage”. We hope that the Legislative Council members will consider Hong Kong’s overall interests and vote in favour of the constitutional reform package to drive Hong Kong's democratic development forward. This will also enable all communities to focus on economic development, improvement of people’s livelihood and enhancement of Hong Kong’s long-term competitiveness.
Business Community Supports Implementation of Universal Suffrage
Since the HKSAR Government’s announcement of the constitutional reform package, all sectors of the society have been paying very close attention to whether Hong Kong can eventually achieve one-person-one-vote election of the Chief Executive in 2017. The business community generally supports the progressive development of Hong Kong’s constitution and believes that adopting the package will help improve Hong Kong’s business environment and have a positive impact on the sustainable and stable development of its economy and society.
Earlier, in conjunction with five other major business associations, the CGCC conducted a questionnaire survey on our respective members with regard to the constitutional reform package. Among the respondents, more than 90% support the universal suffrage package put forward by the HKSAR Government in accordance with the Basic Law and the NPC’s “August 31 Decision” and believe that the Legislative Council members should respect public opinion and vote in favour of the package. Nearly 90% of the respondents agree that adopting the package will help the implementation of “One Country, Two Systems” in Hong Kong and drive Hong Kong’s democratic development to continue to move forward, bringing benefits for Hong Kong’s sustainable economic development as well as social harmony and stability.
In addition, the CGCC was actively involved in the signature campaign launched by the “Alliance for Peace and Democracy”. Many of our office bearers, standing committee members and committee members had actively put their signatures down in support of adopting the constitutional reform package. They also called on the Legislative Council members to listen to the mainstream opinion of the business community and society so that Hong Kong’s five million eligible voters are able to achieve their aspiration to select the Chief Executive by universal suffrage.
Adoption of Package is Favourable to Hong Kong’s Development
investor confidence and business operations. Hong Kong has, over a period of time in the past, experienced incidents such as the Occupy movement, as well as protests against parallel traders and Mainland tourists. In addition, the “filibustering” in the Legislative Council has affected Hong Kong's business environment and overall competitiveness to some extent. According to the 2015 Blue Book of Urban Competitiveness published by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences last month, Shenzhen has surpassed Hong Kong to become the country’s most competitive city for the first time, which is undoubtedly a warning to Hong Kong about its long-term economic development.
As the business community is an important part of the society, we are very concerned about the negative impact caused by the endless social disputes and internal conflicts. We sincerely hope the package for selecting the Chief Executive through universal suffrage in 2017 can be adopted on schedule as it will build a harmonious and stable political environment for the society and gather the strength of all communities to drive Hong Kong’s sustainable and innovative economic development. Hong Kong can then actively capture the new opportunities arising from the country’s new round of economic development. This can be done by further consolidating its strengths and performing its functional role as a “super-connector” in the country’s deployment of its “One Belt, One Road” strategy, establishment of the “Asian Investment Bank” and development of free trade zones. In so doing Hong Kong will not only actively support the country’s strategic development of “going global”, but also drive Hong Kong’s related industries towards a higher value-added development to enhance Hong Kong’s economic competitiveness. This will bring new opportunities for businesses and provide our younger generation with more new opportunities for employment and career development.
All in all, the common aspirations of the CGCC, business community and mainstream society are for the government to function well, the economy to move forward, and the people to live in harmony and see the improvement of their livelihood. We hope the Legislative Council members could objectively and comprehensively consider the views of all communities, including those of the business community, and seek common ground and build consensus to implement the 2017 election of the Chief Executive by universal suffrage as soon as possible. They should not only encourage all communities to focus on economic development and improvement of people’s livelihood, but also work together to enhance Hong Kong’s competitiveness to drive its overall economy forward.