No.10  October, 2017  
Hong Kong once again rated as world's freest economy
Hong Kong was ranked as the freest economy in the world in the latest Fraser Institute’s report on economic freedom. Among the five broad areas of assessment, Hong Kong continued to attain high ranking in “regulation” (first) and “freedom to trade internationally” (second). A Hong Kong government spokesman welcomed Fraser Institute’s recognition, saying that in light of keen global competition, Hong Kong would continue to uphold the principles of economic freedom, which was vital for the city to maintain its competitiveness. Read more about the report here.
Wine & Dine Festival offers world-class culinary delights
Every year, the Hong Kong Wine & Dine Festival brings together world-class food, drinks and entertainment right next to the stunning Victoria Harbour skyline. Organised by the Hong Kong Tourism Board, the festival this year was held at Central Harbourfront Event Space again from 26 to 29 October. Featuring around 400 wine and food booths with many new elements, the Festival was one the celebrating events of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR. Local residents and tourists could taste fine wines from 21 countries and regions including Australia and New Zealand at five wine zones in the venue. The Australian Pavilion comprised 15 booths incorporating regional wine tasting booths, an experiential and education booth as well as a retail booth for visitors to explore the wine-growing trends in Australia, while New Zealand showcased its fine wine ranging from sparkling fruit wine, Manuka honey wine and liqueur to premium handcraft beer. Read more about the Festival here.
2017 CEPA Business Forum
The 2017 Mainland and Hong Kong Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA) Business Forum was held on 27 September to familiarise the trade with the Investment Agreement and Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation (Ecotech Agreement) signed under the CEPA framework on 28 June 2017. As one of the events celebrating the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR, the Forum also reviewed the development of CEPA in strengthening the economic and trade relationship between Mainland China and Hong Kong, as well as the implementation of CEPA measures in various sectors over the years. The Investment Agreement will be implemented from 1 January 2018, whereas the Ecotech Agreement came into force on the date of signing. Read more about the forum here.
  Hong Kong Government attaches importance to I&T
At the opening ceremony of the Symposium on Innovation & Technology 2017 on 13 Oct, the Chief Executive Mrs Carrie Lam reiterated the importance of Hong Kong government attached to the development of I&T in Hong Kong. She told the symposium participants and exhibitors that Hong Kong was committed to providing more convention and exhibition facilities to meet the ever growing demand for expos, symposiums, conventions etc. to be held in Hong Kong. Read more about Mrs Lam’s speech here.
  International Railway Safety Council annual conference
The 27th International Railway Safety Council (IRSC) annual conference jointly organised by the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department and the Mass Transit Railway Corporation Limited successfully concluded on 27 October. The five-day conference, themed "Railway Safety – Innovation and Collaboration", attracted more than 300 attendees from 40 countries/regions who belonged to the government sectors and the railway industry. They shared their experience in various aspects such as securing railway safety, challenges of railway regulation, development of high speed rail and innovative railway designs. Read more here.
  Self-service departure for visitors to Hong Kong
Hong Kong Immigration Department launched the self-service departure for visitors to Hong Kong (Smart Departure) at the Hong Kong International Airport from 10 October. Employing face recognition technology for identity verification, the Smart Departure aimed to provide greater travel convenience for visitors while enhancing the effectiveness of immigration control. Visitors aged 11 or above who hold valid electronic travel documents compliant with the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s requirements, and issued by designated countries or regions as announced by the Immigration Department, may perform self-service departure clearance through Smart Departure e-Channels without prior enrolment. Smart Departure will be extended in phases to other control points. Read more about the measures here.
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