Following the implementation of the national security law for Hong Kong and the latest plan for electoral reform for the special administrative region passed by China's top legislature, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Hong Kong can enjoy stable social order and prioritize their recovery this year, though still being disturbed by COVID-19.
Ahead of the International Sourcing Show 2021, launched by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), Benjamin Chau, deputy executive director of the HKTDC, told the media on Tuesday that four themed categories - household objects, toys, fashion-related items and electronics - will be featured at the fair this year, helping local SMEs to source international deals.
The trade fair will be held online from Wednesday to July 29 together with the in-person format from July 26-29, due to the virus.
"Although the global pandemic situation remains volatile, the release of COVID-19 vaccines and the commencement of mass vaccination programs make us optimistic that trade activities can begin to return to normal," Chau said.
After surviving social unrest but still struggling with the ongoing coronavirus, some SMEs in Hong Kong said they remain positive about 2021, giving part of the credit to the stable social order.
Liang Jiaxian, a deputy branch manager of FS International, a Hong Kong-based international logistics company, told the Global Times that the business environment in Hong Kong has improved a lot.
Social order has returned to normal and the end of violence has helped employees to concentrate on their work, she said.
"Two years ago, the topic for conversation among my colleagues was when to take to the streets, but now they talked about work, life and business," she said, adding she has great confidence in business prospects this year.
Since the beginning of the year, the company has tripled its growth, compared with the same time last year.
Dennis Lam, president and CEO of Hong Kong-based CMER Eye Care Group, also supported the national security law for Hong Kong and the improvement of the electoral system, since they will help to plug the loopholes of the current system in a timely manner.
"Only by implementing these two major measures and adhering to the principle of 'patriots ruling Hong Kong,' can the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong be achieved."
Both Liang and Lam said that they will give more weight to the market in the Chinese mainland.
"With a large number of vaccines put into use, the huge demand of the mainland market is set to be unleashed. This year, we will focus on the layout in the Yangtze River Delta region and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, with new hospitals being opened there this year," Lam told the Global Times on Tuesday.
The ongoing COVID-19 onslaught will still cast a shadow on Hong Kong's exports to the US and European countries, so companies in Hong Kong that have big operations in the Chinese mainland will achieve a quick recovery in 2021, Liang Haiming, chairman of the China Silk Road iValley Research Institute, told the Global Times.
"Only if Hong Kong's political situation stabilizes with more patriotic talent participating in the city's governance, can it bring more and new benefits to foreign investors," he noted.