The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (Greater Bay Area) comprises the two Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macao, and the nine municipalities of Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Jiangmen and Zhaoqing in Guangdong Province. The total area is 56 000 km2 and the total population is over 70 million as at end 2018.
The development of the Greater Bay Area is accorded the status of key strategic planning in the country’s development blueprint, having great significance in the country’s implementation of innovation-driven development and commitment to reform and opening-up. The objectives are to further deepen cooperation amongst Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao, fully leverage the composite advantages of the three places, facilitate in-depth integration within the region, and promote coordinated regional economic development, with a view to developing an international first-class bay area ideal for living, working and travelling.
On 1 July 2017, witnessed by President Xi Jinping, the National Development and Reform Commission and the governments of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao signed the Framework Agreement on Deepening Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Cooperation in the Development of the Greater Bay Area in Hong Kong. The Framework Agreement sets out the goals and principles of cooperation and establishes the key cooperation areas in the development of the Greater Bay Area. Since then, the relevant Central Government departments and the three governments have strived for policy breakthroughs with an innovative and open mind in taking forward the development of the Greater Bay Area jointly.
Being the most open and international city in the Greater Bay Area, Hong Kong is known for its status as international financial, transportation, trade centres and aviation hub as well as its renowned professional services. Enjoying the dual advantages of “one country, two systems”, Hong Kong plays an important role in the Greater Bay Area Development. On the one hand, Hong Kong will facilitate and support the economic development of the region, with a view to enhancing the role and functions of the Greater Bay Area in the country’s two-way opening up; on the other hand, we will facilitate the development of industries in which Hong Kong’s strengths lie in the Greater Bay Area, capitalising on Hong Kong’s strengths to serve the country’s needs.
The Steering Committee for the Development of the Greater Bay Area, chaired by Chief Executive Mrs Carrie Lam and comprising all Secretaries of Department and Directors of Bureau as members, is responsible for the overall co-ordination of matters relating to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s (SAR) participation in the development of the Greater Bay Area. The Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau will also set up a Greater Bay Area Development Office and appoint a Commissioner for the Development of the Greater Bay Area to implement the relevant work. These include: developing an international innovation and technology hub; facilitating the development of industries in which Hong Kong enjoys strengths into the Greater Bay Area; and through policy innovation and breakthroughs as well as facilitation measures for Hong Kong residents studying, working and living in the Greater Bay Area, fostering the flow of people, goods, capital and information and improving the overall connectivity of the Greater Bay Area under the principle of “one country, two systems”.
The promulgation of the Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area on 18 February 2019 signified a new milestone in the development of the Greater Bay Area. With the full support of the Central Government, the Hong Kong SAR will proactively integrate into the overall national development, thereby expanding our scope of development and generating new impetus for growth to bring new development opportunities to different sectors of the community, especially our young people.