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HK, Shanghai sign agreements to further enhance cooperation

Hong Kong Special Administrative Region's Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor (back row, center) and other officials witness the signing of four cooperation agreements during the fifth plenary session of the Hong Kong-Shanghai Cooperation Conference, held via videoconference, on Aug 30, 2021. (PHOTO / INFORMATION SERVICES DEPARTMENT, HKSAR GOVT)

HONG KONG – Hong Kong and Shanghai signed several agreements to further enhance cooperation during the fifth plenary session of the Hong Kong-Shanghai Cooperation Conference on Monday.

The session, held via video conference, was co-chaired by Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor and Mayor of Shanghai Gong Zheng, who led the Hong Kong and Shanghai delegations, respectively.

HKSAR Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor and Mayor of Shanghai Gong Zheng signed a memorandum after the two sides reached consensus on 13 areas

The current Hong Kong government is the first to hold plenary sessions of the cooperative mechanism twice during the five-year term, Lam said, adding this proved that “the relationship between Hong Kong and Shanghai has become closer and more diversified, without being affected by external factors, even though Hong Kong has faced unprecedented challenges in the past two years”. 

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Shanghai and Hong Kong are key cities of the country with special status and functions, Lam said. The former is the leading city of the Yangtze River Delta Economic City Group while Hong Kong is the core city of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, she said. 

During the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25) period, the two sides should strive for broader, closer and deeper cooperation, with a view to serving the nation’s needs and contributing to the country's development, Lam said.

Mayor of Shanghai Gong Zheng holds up the "Co-operation Memorandum of the Fifth Plenary Session of the Hong Kong/Shanghai Co-operation Conference" signed during the meeting which was held via video link on Aug 30, 2021. (PHOTO / INFORMATION SERVICES DEPARTMENT, HKSAR GOVT)

Lam and Gong signed a memorandum after the two sides reached consensus on 13 areas. They include expansion in the mainland domestic market and the Belt and Road Initiative; innovation and technology; finance; education and talent development and legal and dispute resolution, among others.

The two sides also agreed to continue pursuing cooperation in areas including planning, development and management of urban area, environmental protection, sports and tourism and social welfare services.

During the meeting, four other cooperation agreements were also inked, including memorandums of understanding on economic cooperation and innovation and technology, a collaboration agreement between the Hong Kong Hospital Authority and Shanghai Hospital Development Center, as well as a letter of intent on cooperation between Shanghai Museum and Hong Kong Palace Museum.

Members of the Executive Council and other officials attended the signing ceremony in Hong Kong.