Director of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office (Toronto), Miss Kathy Chan, attended the annual dinner hosted by Hong Kong University Alumni Association of Ontario (HKUAAO) on April 27 in Toronto.
Speaking at the annual dinner, Miss Chan first welcomed the HKU North American Delegation Team for their visit to Toronto and Chicago. The delegation team was led by Vice President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Global), Professor John Kao, and joined by deans/associate deans and, professor from various faculties of HKU.
Miss Chan went on to update the participants on the latest economic situation of Hong Kong and the city’s active participation in the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Bay Area. She added that two key infrastructure projects, i.e. the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link will be commissioned later this year, which would greatly enhance Hong Kong's connectivity with Mainland China especially the Bay Area.
In addition, Miss Chan took the opportunity to introduce Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government’s commitment to bettering education. "The Chief Executive of the HKSAR, Mrs Carrie Lam, proposed in her Election Manifesto an immediate increase of recurrent education expenditure by HK$5 billion a year. And the first phase measures costing HK$3.6 billion in total were announced in the first week after her assumption of office last July. In the latest budget this February, Financial Secretary, Mr Paul Chan, proposed to commit an additional recurrent expenditure of HK$2 billion to achieve quality education," Miss Chan said.
As far as the post-secondary education sector is concerned, the HKSAR government is committed to providing quality subsidised university education. Apart from this, the government hopes to help qualified students pursue self-financing post-secondary courses. Starting this academic year, the government would provide a non-means-tested annual subsidy for eligible students pursuing full-time locally-accredited local and non-local self-financing undergraduate programmes offered by eligible institutions in Hong Kong.
Lastly, Miss Chan noted that Canada is one of the favourable destinations of pursuing post-secondary education for Hong Kong students. At present, there are over 4 300 Hong Kong students aged 25 and below studying in Canada. She hoped to see more co-operation between the tertiary institutions of the two places.