The Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Edward Yau, began his visit programme in Washington, DC, the United States (US) today (September 24, Eastern Standard Time), where he met with think tank members, officials and business leaders to exchange views on Hong Kong-US economic relations and regional and global economic and trade issues as well as to promote Hong Kong's strengths in doing business and update them on Hong Kong's latest economic developments.
Mr Yau first met with economic and trade experts from the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE). They exchanged views on issues such as global economic and trade relations, and the current situation and future prospects of multilateral and regional trading systems. The PIIE is a non-profit and non-partisan research institution which mainly seeks to analyse issues to make globalisation sustainable for the US and the world.
Mr Yau then paid a courtesy call on the Minister of the Chinese Embassy in the US, Mr Li Kexin, to understand the latest situation of China-US relations. During the meeting he thanked the Chinese Embassy for supporting the work of Hong Kong's economic and trade offices in the US.
In the evening, Mr Yau joined a dinner hosted by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, Washington, DC. The dinner was attended by former and current senior US government officials, think tank members and leaders of chambers of commerce and business organisations. He noted that the attendees attached great importance to Hong Kong and US trade and economic relations and said he looked forward to fostering even closer bilateral ties through exchanges of high-level government and business delegations.
In 2017, total trade in goods and services between the US and Hong Kong was close to US$70 billion. The US was Hong Kong's second-largest goods trading partner, while Hong Kong ranked ninth-largest among US goods exports destinations.
Mr Yau will continue his visit to Washington, DC, tomorrow (September 25, Eastern Standard Time) where he will meet officials and officiate at a gala reception to celebrate the inaugural direct flight between Hong Kong and Washington, DC, and attend the signing ceremony of Statement of Intent on Smart Technology Collaboration between the US Department of Commerce and the Hong Kong Productivity Council.