On Thursday 13th December the Center for China and Globalization (CCG) published its report “Global Talent in the Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau Bay Area”, which discusses the composition and development of global talent in the “Greater Bay Area.” The publishing of the report was marked by a meeting, with speeches delivered by the Director of CCG, Dr Wang Huiyao, and CCG Secretary General , Dr Miao Lu, announcing the official release of the report. The conference, held at the Jianyin International building in Hong Kong, was attended by experts, scholars and entrepreneurs from Hong Kong and the mainland, discussions on the status of global talent in the Greater bay area and its future were also held.
The report highlights the ways in which the Greater Bay Area can further its efforts to internationalize and thrive as a dynamic world-class Bay Area; and with the recent openings of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong high-speed railway, the release of the report couldn’t be timelier. CCG Director Dr Wang Huiyao stated in his speech that, “As the first ever systematic analysis of global talent in this region, this report puts forward key findings for the Greater Bay Area to attract more international talent to its shores.” Dr Wang also noted that, “Global talent forms the engine that drives economies the world over.”
According to the latest data, the Greater Bay Area is already the top Bay Area in the world for most airport passenger numbers and total volume of import and export trade, and is set to overtake both the Tokyo and New York Bay Areas in terms of GDP by 2022. Although the global standing of the Bay Area is predicted to rise, the growth of first-tier Chinese cities and the ever-increasing numbers of second-tier Chinese cities brings further domestic competition in attracting global talent, as well as international competition with other rising Asian powers.
It is in this context that the report stresses the need for Hong Kong, Macau and Guangdong to better cooperate in order to increase their group ability to attract global talent into the Greater Bay Area. The report points out that the differences in tax levels between Guangdong (higher taxes) and Hong Kong and Macau (lower taxes) prove to be a large barrier to intraregional flows of both business and talent. Difficulties in travelling between areas, a lack of public service connectivity and research on science and technology innovation are also underlined as areas in need of further regional cooperation to increase the attractiveness of the Greater Bay Area to international talent. CCG’s Dr Miao Lu, commenting on further cooperation between the areas, said: “This would help to combine Hong Kong’s financial, scientific research and management experience… with the mainland’s large manpower.”
The report also highlights education as a crucial area for talent development. Currently only 17.5 percent of people in the Greater Bay Area have received higher education - falling far behind the San Francisco Bay Area (46%) and New York Bay Area (42%). The research also showed that the Greater Bay Area had significantly less higher education institutions compared to other Bay Areas, such as Tokyo Bay Area which has more than 100 universities and 360 vocational colleges. The report suggests establishing a new joint university for the Greater Bay Area, to strengthen higher education across the region. Dr Miao Lu proposed this joint institution should focus on postgraduate research, and suggested Hong Kong’s Lok Ma Chau Loop border area as a potential location, an area Hong Kong and Shenzhen authorities have already agreed to establish an Innovation and Technology Park in in coming years.
Founded in November 2017, CCG Hong Kong Council is an international think tank established by CCG to study Hong Kong and its internationalization positioning and strategy. By pooling the wisdom of all circles of Hong Kong and combining the international influence and policy impetus accumulated by CCG over the years, it is committed to studying Hong Kong's experience and promotes regional integration through globalization. This organization aims to promote regional economic integration in the Greater Bay Area of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao, with Hong Kong as the focus. CCG Hong Kong Council will continue to study and enhance Hong Kong's role in globalization, recognizing and utilizing Hong Kong's advantages of convergence between the East and the West, and promote Hong Kong's international competitiveness, global innovation and talent.