Director of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (Toronto) (HKETO), Ms Emily Mo, spoke at the launching ceremony of the Women's International Network (WIN) hosted by the Hong Kong-Canada Business Association (HKCBA) (Toronto Section) on June 8. WIN is committed to empowering and encouraging women entrepreneurs in the furtherance of international business and exchanges between Canada and Hong Kong, and via Hong Kong to Asia.
In delivering a greeting message at the launching ceremony, Ms Mo noted that Canadian women entrepreneurs are key to Canada’s economic success, yet only 16% of the small and medium-sized businesses are owned by women at present. Studies show that by advancing gender equality and women’s participation in the economy, Canada could add up to $150 billion in GDP.
“In Hong Kong, over 35% of the mangers, administrators and professionals are women, and the city is a perfect launchpad for Canadian companies seeking expansion into the Mainland China and Asia markets,” Ms Mo said. Ms Mo also highlighted Hong Kong’s active participation in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area which offers abundant opportunities for companies from Canada and around the world.
Ms Mo pointed out that Hong Kong will continue to play its unique role as an international financial, transportation and trading centre, a global offshore RMB business hub and an international asset and risk management centre as affirmed by China’s latest National 14th Five-Year Plan.
Beyond the mainland of China, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is Hong Kong’s 2nd biggest trading partner in goods, and 4th largest in services. “Hong Kong’s Free Trade Agreement and related Investment Agreement with ASEAN can boost business and investment opportunities throughout this huge and fast-emerging trade bloc in Asia,” Ms Mo said.
Before closing, Ms Mo congratulated HKCBA (Toronto Section) for the launch of WIN, which is part of the 2021 Hong Kong Week organised by HKETO. “The Hong Kong Week programme this year includes the cheongsam exhibition and related talks and workshops. There is also a business webinar with the Chief Secretary of Administration Matthew Cheung Kin-chung on 23 June, and a dragon boat exhibition in Vancouver,” Ms Mo said.