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Anti-epidemic meeting held

A meeting on the anti-epidemic work of the Mainland and Hong Kong was held today in Shenzhen.   It was hosted by Hong Kong & Macao Affairs Office of the State Council Deputy Director Huang Liuquan.   Chief Secretary John Lee led Hong Kong Special Administrative Region representatives to attend the meeting and exchange strategies with Mainland representatives on preventing and fighting COVID-19 as well as study the resumption of quarantine-free travel between the Mainland and Hong Kong.   Mr Huang noted that the office organised the meeting as the central government attaches great importance to the request by Chief Executive Carrie Lam on the resumption of quarantine-free travel with the Mainland.   Mr Lee thanked the central government for its support and care towards the Hong Kong SAR's efforts in preventing and fighting the virus, and for offering vital assistance on many occasions.   He also expressed gratitude to the office for arranging the meeting within a short

Govt opposes US statements

Financial Secretary Paul Chan today said the malicious smear and allegations against the National Security Law made in the 2021 Investment Climate Statements: Hong Kong released by the US Department of State are unfounded.   In his response to the report, Mr Chan noted that the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government strongly objects and condemns the US administration's repeated attempts to smear the National Security Law and grossly interfere in Hong Kong's affairs, adding that it took great exception to the malicious comments relating to the law in the statements.   "The statements on one hand attempted to slander the National Security Law, but on the other hand mentioned that Hong Kong remains a popular destination for US investment and trade, possesses world-class institutions and regulatory systems and provides competitive financial, trading and professional services.   "The relevant comments proved that the remarks made by the US administration are self-contradictory, illogical and the accusations to the National Security Law are self-defeating."   He reiterated that the implementation of the National Security Law has safeguarded Hong Kong's unique strengths under the "one country, two systems" principle and ensured a safe and stable environment, which reinforced the city's position as an international financial centre and is conducive to attracting more global investors to do business and invest in Hong Kong.   To seize the opportunities arising from the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area market and green finance, some global financial institutions are already planning to increase investment or expand their operations in Hong Kong, reflecting international investors' confidence in the city, he added.   The finance chief also pointed out that the implementation of the National Security Law in the past year has made Hong Kong's transition from chaos to order and returned people's lives to normal.   Furthermore, the improved electoral system has mitigated internal attrition and political wrangling, enabling the Hong Kong SAR Government and the society to focus their energy on developing the economy and improving livelihoods.   Mr Chan said: "Hong Kong's position as an international financial centre is as strong as the past. Its financial market has remained robust.   "The Hong Kong SAR Government has strong confidence and ability to fully utilise Hong Kong's unique advantages and competitiveness, grasp the enormous opportunities brought about by the National 14th Five-Year Plan, the bay area development and the Belt & Road Initiative, leading Hong Kong's economy to prosperity."
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