Chinese President Xi Jinpinbg meets with Carrie Lam, Chief Executive-elect of the Hong Kong SAR, on April 11th, 2017 in Beijing. [Photo: gmw.cn]
Carrie Lam, Chief Executive-elect of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), said that bolstering Hong Kong's economy and easing the local housing crunch are going to be among her top priorities once she takes office.
"Hong Kong's economic development now faces a few bottlenecks. Land and housing will be one of these three priorities that I have identified for the next term of the Hong Kong SAR government," said Lam during an interview with CGTN.
Hong Kong is the world's most expensive housing market. Affordable housing, especially for the young, remains a major concern.
The Chief Executive-elect said she plans to implement several measures to help address the issue.
"So one is, of course, to continue to create land by reclamation outside the Victoria Harbor, by urban regeneration or making use of some of what we call the 'brownfield sites' in the New Territories. The other is really to look at the existing stock of housing to see whether there are some spare capacities that can be released into the market, either through sale or leasing so that people will have a greater access into the housing market," said Lam.
Lam said another priority will be the development of the local economy. She said Hong Kong will continue to try to work with the mainland, noting that many companies from the mainland continue to regard Hong Kong as a stepping stone to expand abroad.
"Now with the very significant growth of the mainland economy and the emergence of really mega-sized mainland companies, these mainland companies are using Hong Kong as a springboard to go abroad and so they would come to Hong Kong to list on our exchange, to raise funds and then, from here, to go out to invest in other parts of the world. So at every stage of development, because of our unique advantages, basically on the 'one country, two systems,' I see a lot of opportunities for us," said Lam.
Lam and her leadership team will take office on July 1st, which marks the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China.