Belt and Road Summit 2018 celebrated success of the development while reflecting on more future collaborative opportunities

I was excited to join the Belt and Road Summit 2018, where officials from the mainland and Hong Kong as well as industry leaders gathered on this occasion to share updates and inspirations on the Belt and Road development. It was held in the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, and attracted around 5000 people from 55 countries to come together to explore the summit’s theme, Collaborate for Success.

The Chief Executive of the HKSAR, Carrie Lam, gave an opening speech for the occasion, while the Chairman of the HKTDC, Vincent HS Lo, delivered the welcoming remarks. In the uplifting speeches, we could clearly feel the success of and prosperity brought by the initiative. During the summit, a free trade agreement was signed between Hong Kong and Georgia. As a door to the Caucasus and Central Asia, Georgia will play a critical role in linking Europe and Asia and the free trade agreement marked a promising beginning.

At the Plenary Session titled “Action through Collaboration: Case Studies on Signature Belt and Road Projects” chaired by President of Asia Financial Holdings Limited, Bernard Chan, Belt and Road initiative investment opportunities were discussed and insights shared by President of China Communications Construction Group Liu Qitao, Vice Chairman of All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce and Chairman of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Li Shufu, Chairman of MTR Corporation Limited Professor Frederick Ma, Chairman of Metro Pacific Investments Corporation Manuel V Pangilinan, and Vice Chairwoman of Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KADIN Indonesia) and Chief Executive Officer of Sintesa Group, Shinta Widjaja Kamdani. This marked the highlight of the summit. Afterwards many discussion sessions unfolded where financing for infrastructure, information technology, engineering, green finance, risk management, legal services, etc were explored.

It was an eye-opening experience to hear reviews from industry leaders on the development of the national strategy. It also offered a good chance of reflecting on what role your industry plays and what position can be taken in this initiative.


一帶一路高峰論壇慶祝發展成果,審視未來合作機會

我十分高興能參與今年的一帶一路高峰論壇,會上內地和香港官員,及各行各業的領袖聚首一堂,分享一帶一路的成果和最新發展,並審視未來的合作機會。是次論壇在香港會議展覽中心舉辦,吸引來自五十五個國家約五千人參與,深入探討今年的主題「全方位合作」,場面盛大。

會議在行政長官林鄭月娥的開幕辭和貿發局主席羅康瑞的歡迎辭下順利開始,會上我們亦見證了香港和格魯吉亞簽署自由貿易協定,格魯吉亞是通往高加索和中亞地區的重要樞紐,在接通歐洲和亞洲上扮演關鍵角色,而這次的自由貿易協定可望為雙方帶來更多合作機會。

接着的討論環節以「共商合作 共拓商機:探討一帶一路重點項目」為主題,由亞洲金融集團總裁陳智思主持,討論嘉賓有中國交通建設集團董事長劉起濤、全國工商聯副主席兼浙江吉利控股集團董事長李書福、香港鐵路有限公司主席馬時亨、菲律賓基建企業 Metro Pacific Investments Corporation 主席彭澤仁 (Manuel V Pangilinan),以及印尼工商會副主席兼 Sintesa 集團行政總裁 Shinta Widjaja Kamdani,深入探討了一帶一路的投資機會,分享了相關經驗。討論環節後多場論壇陸續展開,由各領域專業人士相互討論,多項專題包括基建融資、資訊科技、工程、綠色金融、風險管理以及法律服務等方面,從不同面向探討相關議題。

此次論壇可以聽到來自行業領袖關於國家級戰略的回顧和分析,真是讓人眼界大開,亦是個重新審視自己行業從中扮演甚麼角色及如何把握機遇的好機會。

Research reveals 1 in 4 of the Hong Kong workforce will lose jobs to artificial intelligence within 20 years

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been a hot topic throughout the world over recent years. There have been lots of studies and discussions over how AI can substitute human workforce in so many positions and domains. Three days ago the One Country Two Systems Research Institute published a study on the impacts AI will cause to the Hong Kong market and workforce in the near future.

The study was conducted by Dr. Paul Duckworth with machine learning, which revealed that in the next 10 to 20 years, around 1 million population in Hong Kong will be threatened by 70% chances of being replaced by AI technologies. The affected population will constitute more than one fourth of the total workforce. The study further mentions policies such as universal basic income, robot tax, capital ownership over machines, etc. in better safeguarding the people in employment against AI. However Hong Kong has not developed any comprehensive development strategy concerning AI.

It is noteworthy that the study points out 3 weaknesses of the Hong Kong market against AI to invite more discussions. First, the 4 pillar industries in Hong Kong, namely finance, tourism, trade and logistics, and professional services, while making jobs for almost half of the workforce, are threatened by a rather high risk of being replaced by AI. Second, education on science and mathematics is rather weak, unable to nurture AI talents of the future. Third, workforce engaged in continuous education is low, making them susceptible to risks imposed by advanced technologies.

AI advancement and adoption are inevitable. Hong Kong has stepped up efforts in developing the innovation sector over recent years. For example, the 2018-19 Hong Kong Budget reserves 10 billion HKD alongside a series of initiatives to bolster innovation technology in Hong Kong. There are also supportive incubators for technology startups, such as Science Park and Cyberport that supply funding and help.

However, while help to IT companies has been strengthened, it should be just as vital to prepare citizens for the AI era. It is critical for citizens to understand what AI is capable of, and how AI can be of use to their life and jobs, in order to embrace AI in different domains instead of fearing it. STEM education, namely the curriculum on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, has already been proactively launched across Hong Kong primary and secondary schools to cultivate technology interests and talents in young generations. But it is more difficult for adults to adapt to innovation, so more courses on AI and related areas should be provided to citizens with financial assistance to help them get adapted to AI adoption. A positive and healthy mindset toward AI encourages better transits on the part of citizens, and also allows for a culture conducive to creation and innovation with AI.


人工智能將在未來十至二十年取代香港近一百萬人的工作

近年人工智能(Artificial Intelligence)造成熱議,有關人工智能的研究和討論除了關注其應用外,更多圍繞技術如何在多個工種和範疇取代人類,造成大量失業。兩天前一國兩制研究中心發表一份「人工智能對香港就業市場的衝擊及如何迎接人工智能時代」的研究報告,分析人工智能在未來十至二十年對香港市場勞動力的影響。

研究由保羅·德沃夫博士(Dr. Paul Duckworth)以機械學習(Machine Learning)方式進行,結果顯示在未來十至二十年,香港約一百萬人在工作上面對70%的機會被人工智能取代,被影響人口多於整體勞動人口的四分一。研究亦提及數項保障市民的措施,如全民基本收入、機械人稅、機械資本所有權等等。然而香港現時尚未有任何全面的與人工智能相關的發展策略。

研究報告特別指出現時香港就業市場在面對人工智能的挑戰時存在着三大弱點,期望引起關注及更多討論。第一,香港的四大產業,金融、旅遊、貿易物流和專業服務,雖然為差不多近一半勞動人口帶來就業職位,但卻面臨較高的風險被人工智能取代。第二,科技和數理的教育偏弱,不能為香港未來培育優秀的創研人才。第三,投入可持續發展的人口偏低,其承受高科技衝擊的能力較弱。

人工智能的發展和應用是不能避免的,所以香港近年大力發展創新科技產業,例如二零一八至一九年度的財政預算案就預留了一百億港元外加一系列措施來重點發展本港的創新科技。除此,香港有多個創科培育中心,如科學園和數碼港等,為創新科技初創提供資金和幫助。

在創科公司得到加強的同時,市民亦不應被怱略,讓大眾為人工智能時代做好準備十分重要。具體而言,應讓市民明白人工智能的好處,了解人工智能在生活和工作上能如何得到應用,讓其在不同方面能接納人工智能,而不是一面倒的恐懼或擔憂。近年政府推廣STEM教育,培養中小學生在科學(Science)、技術(Technology)、工程(Engineering)及數學(Mathematics)上的興趣和才能,積極培育下一代的科研潛能,但成年人面對創科發展更難以適從,政府有必要向大眾提供協助,如為市民提供更多人工智能或相關領域的課桯及資金幫助,鼓勵市民接觸和認識,發展正面和健康的心態,不但能幫助其迎接人工智能時代,亦對發展科研文化和氣候有積極作用。