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News and Events
 

MarketingPulse
(21 March 2018)

Taking place in Hong Kong, MarketingPulse is an integrated branding and marketing conference for global marketers, brands, advertising agencies, media, innovation professionals and enterprises to gathered and shared the latest marketing trends, exchanged best marketing practices and explored new collaborations in Asia.

The debut MarketingPulse, organised by the HKTDC, is a business focused rendezvous aims to connect agencies and marketers with brand owners in Asia to capture the business opportunities in the region. The one-day programme focused on the integration of innovation and marketing, social media, content and programmatic marketing, China opportunities and best practices in the luring Asian market.

From contents defining new marketing strategies to events that connect and catalyse, MarketingPulse is not only a conference, but an inspiring annual rendezvous to explore new frontiers in the markets.

The Conference also featured an exhibition alongside that serves as a marketplace for companies to source for different marketing solutions. Concurrently held with Filmart, the Asia's largest film and TV market, we expected over 700 marketing experts and brands joining us at the event.

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Luncheon event - "Business & Investment Continuity with Thailand 2018" with H.E. Sontirat Sontijirawong Minister of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government
(21 March 2018)

The Ministry of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government, led an official delegation to Hong Kong in March 2018.

The Ministry of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government and our Council have jointly organized an important luncheon event "Business & Investment Continuity with Thailand 2018", with H.E. Sontirat Sontijirawong, Minister of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government in purpose of updating each other on the latest business trends and exchanging idea on exploring further opportunities.

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Nasi Lemak Dinner Talk
(14 March 2018)

Do you want to know the insider story of the hotel industry? We took you from understanding the investment to the design and building of a hotel and finally to the managing of a hotel in our next Nasi Lemak Dinner Talk.

Nasi Lemak Dinner Talk was taken place on Wednesday, 14 March 2018, at Hung Hom Room 1-2, Ballroom, Kerry Hotel Hong Kong, 38 Hung Luen Road, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong .

The event was organised by the Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (Hong & Macau) and co-host by Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council .

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ASEAN Chambers event - ASEAN Chambers CNY Gathering 2018
(6 March 2018)

ASEAN Chambers CNY Gathering 2018 had taken place on Tuesday, 6 March 2018, at Lobby Lounge, JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong.

The event was co-host by Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council, the Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (Hong & Macau), Hong Kong Myanmar Chamber of Commerce, Hong Kong - Vietnam Chamber of Commerce, Hong Kong Macau and Myanmar Chamber Of Commerce & Industry Limited and The Singapore Chamber of Commerce (Hong Kong).

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Business of IP Asia Forum 2017
(7 - 8 December 2017)

Jointly organised by the HKSAR Government, Hong Kong Trade Development Council and Hong Kong Design Centre, BIP Asia Forum brought IP professionals and business leaders from all over the world to discuss the latest developments in the IP world, and to explore business collaboration opportunities.

The sixth edition of the Forum was held on 1-2 December 2016 with great success, featuring over 80 prominent speakers sharing their insights and attracted more than 2,500 IP professionals and industry players to attend. The forum has proven to be an effective platform for attendees to gain better understanding of IP and explore potential business partnership through networking and sharing sessions.

To maximise networking opportunities for participants of BIP Asia Forum, an Exhibition is staged alongside the main conference. In 2016, over 90 exhibitors joined the BIP Exhibition including the World Intellectual Property Organization, international technology corporations, top-tier research centres, universities and IP service providers.

Following its success last year, the BIP Exhibition staged again in 2017, offering you an ideal platform to promote your products and services to over 2,500 participants from all over the world.

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TID's invitation to seminar on "Free Trade and Globalisation - The Hong Kong Experience in Retrospect and the Prospects"
(1 December 2017)

In celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Trade and Industry Department organised the above seminar on 1 December 2017 (Friday) in W Hong Kong hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Business Advisory Council, Hong Kong, China (ABAC HKC) and the Hong Kong Committee for Pacific Economic Cooperation (HKCPEC) were our co-organisers of the event.

The seminar aimed to provide an opportunity for the government, the business community, and the academia to review Hong Kong??s progress and achievements in promoting free trade and regional economic integration in the last two decades, and to discuss the challenges and opportunities ahead. We had invited prominent international and local experts in business and academic sectors as our guest speakers.

APEC Study Centre, HKIAPS, The Chinese University of Hong Kong were the supporting organisation of this seminar.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with CE of HKSAR
(31 October 2017)

HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Mrs Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, delivered her Policy Address to the Legislative Council in mid-October 2017.

We were deeply honoured that the Chief Executive had accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community at this joint luncheon, which was held on Tuesday, 31 October. Mrs Lam discussed with attendees the reasoning behind on her first Policy Address, and learned more about her initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, land supply, labour market, the environment and improving Hong Kong's competitiveness in the year ahead.

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WT l Wearable Technologies Conference 2017 ASIA
(12 October 2017)

2017 had been marked the fifth consecutive year, WT | Wearable Technologies AG, Germany gathered the entire value chain of wearables at the Asian leg of the WT | Wearable Technologies Conferences in Hong Kong.

This year, along with some new topics like VR/AR Augmented Solutions for BIM, Healthcare, Sports performance, people could gain innovation insight and explore some business opportunities.

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2017
(20 September 2017)

About 20 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. We also continued to develop ties with other organizations.

Mr. William Chao, Mr. Horst Geicke and Mr. Benjamin Lam were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 11 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, SBS, JP, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

10) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

11) Mr. Knattapisit Krutkrongchai, Head of Business Strategy of AIA International Limited

We were honored to have a special guest joining us as our keynote speaker at the luncheon right after our Annual General Meeting, Dr Kobsak Pootrakool.

Dr Kobsak Pootrakool serves as a Vice Minister at Office of Prime Minister of Thailand under the government led by General Prayuth Chan-ocha, Prime minister since January 2016. He also served as the former member of the Constitution Drafting Committee before being appointed as Vice Minister.

Dr Kobsak joined Bangkok Bank in December 2010 as Executive Vice President, International Banking Group. He achieved several projects including banking license approval from the Central Bank of Myanmar in 2015.

From 1996 to 2010, he was a former senior executive with the Bank of Thailand (BOT) and the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET). He helped develop and implement monetary policy and financial institution policy, and was Division Executive of the Monetary Policy Strategy Division. He was seconded to the SET from 2008 to 2009 as Senior Vice President (Strategic Planning) and Executive Director of the SET Research Institute for Capital Market.

Dr Kobsak's awards include the Puay Ungpakorn Medal in 2009, given to the best young economist in Thailand. He has published extensively, within Thailand and internationally, and is a frequent media commentator. He holds a PhD in macroeconomics and international economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a BA in mathematics and economics from Williams College.

Dr Kobsak's insight into Thailand's financial and economic situation will be of great interest to all HKTBC members.

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The 65th InterCham Young Professional Cocktail
(23 August 2017)

The 65th InterCham Young Professional Cocktail were taken place on Wednesday, 23 August 2017, at Jamie's Italian, 2/F, Soundwill Plaza ll - Midtown, 1 Tang Lung Street, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong.

Let's meet and mingle with hundreds of professionals from 28 international business organisations in Hong Kong and find yourself in the perfect atmosphere after work!

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Hong Kong Summit 2017 Innovating New Ideas - Embracing New Opportunities
(11 July 2017)

The Chinese General Chamber of Commerce (CGCC) was honored to organize the Hong Kong Summit 2017 - Innovating New Ideas - Embracing New Opportunities on 11 July 2017. Being one of the signature events in Hong Kong, it was co-organized with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, and fully supported by Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the HKSAR, the Office of Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the HKSAR and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council.

Hong Kong Summit had explored how the economic integration of ASEAN, China, Japan and South Korea could provide renewed impetus to global economic growth, and how Hong Kong, well-positioned at the doorstep of China, can serve as a platform of collaboration among nations across the region.

Government ministers, entrepreneurs and experts from East Asina countries were invited to speak at the Summit. The valuable insights from the distinguished speakers will enlighten participants on unlocking new business opportunities.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2017-2018 Budget
(21 March 2017)

Financial Secretary, the Honourable Paul MP Chan, delivered his 2017-2018 Budget Speech to the Legislative Council on 22 February 2017.

We are deeply honored that Mr Chan had accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community on 21 March 2017, about his budget. This joint business community luncheon was an excellent opportunity for you to learn more about his thoughts and insights behind the new Budget. You would be learned directly from the Financial Secretary about the Government??s plans to steer its fiscal policy to sustain Hong Kong??s economic growth and maintain our competitiveness.

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An armchair discussion with Mrs. Carrie Lam
(23 February 2017)

The Zubin Foundation believes that more should be done to include ethnic minorities and non-Chinese individuals into mainstream Hong Kong society. Ethnic minorities bring talent as well as much needed global connections for Hong Kong. Most importantly many if not most, call Hong Kong home and as such deserve to be fully integrated into Hong Kong society.

The Zubin Foundation had sent invitations to all Chief Executive candidates to join the armchair discussion. We hope to understand from them their views of:

Against the backdrop of the findings highlighted in the Status of Ethnic Minority Report, what is the future of ethnic minorities and non-Chinese in Hong Kong?

What they will do specifically to address the sizeable gaps between ethnic minorities and the Chinese population in Hong Kong with respect to all walks of life, including education, economics, welfare, health, and inclusion to positions of leaderships of these individuals.

The Zubin Foundation was organising an armchair discussion with Mrs. Carrie Lam, candidate for the Chief Executive election, on 23 February 2017 on What is the Future for Non-Chinese and Ethnic Minorities in Hong Kong. The discussion took place at 7:30pm and moderated by two professors, Prof. Puja Kapai and Prof. Naubahar Sharif. Opening and Closing remarks on the day would done by Ravi Gidumal, co-Founder of The Zubin Foundation. It took place at the Sai Yung Pun Community Centre.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with CE of HKSAR
(26 January 2017)

HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Leung Chun-ying, delivered his Policy Address to the Legislative Council on 18 January 2017.

We were deeply honored that the Chief Executive had accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong Business Community at this joint luncheon, which held on Thursday, 26 January 2017. Participants at this luncheon would be able to hear Mr Leung further elaborate on his Policy Address, and learn more about his initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, land supply, labour market, the environment and Hong Kong??s competitiveness in the year ahead.

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China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable on "Hong Kong Super-Connecting the Belt and Road"
(7 December 2016)

The China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable Panel on: "Hong Kong Super-Connecting the Belt and Road", was scheduled at 12:00pm to 3:00pm on 7 December 2016 at Chancellor Room, HKCEC, Hong Kong.

As we saw a very fast development of China??s "Belt and Road Initiative" in its leadership and institutions. It was under such background that we would like to share with the business community and media where does the Hong Kong SAR stand on the "BAR" initiative. Where does Hong Kong stand three years after President Xi Jinping??s announcement of the "Belt and Road" initiative? How does Hong Kong super-connect the countries and regions along the Belt and Road? What are the challenges and opportunities for Hong Kong businesses?

This event was expected to bring together government leaders, industry players and CEOs from across the region, and it was opened to local and international media.

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Business of IP Asia Forum 2016
(1-2 December 2016)

Jointly organised by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Government, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and the Hong Kong Design Centre, the Business of IP Asia Forum (BIP Asia) is one of the most prominent intellectual property events in Asia. The Forum aims to promote Hong Kong as the regional IP marketplace and a premium service platform that facilitates companies to manage and monetise their IPs as part of their overall business strategy.

Last year, the 5th edition BIP Asia attracted more than 2,400 participants from 37 countries and regions. The forum has proven to be an effective platform for attendees to gain better understanding of IP and explore potential business partnership through networking and sharing sessions.

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2016
(23 September 2016)

About 12 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events in Hong Kong and the Mainland. We also continued to develop ties with other organizations.

Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Mr. Willy Lin, Mr. Kenneth Gaw and Mr. Raphael Tong were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 12 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, SBS, JP, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

10) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

11) Mr. Knattapisit Krutkrongchai, Head of Business Strategy of AIA International Limited

12) Mr. Benjamin Cha, Executive Director of HKR International Ltd

We were honored to have a special guest joining us as our keynote speaker at the luncheon right after our Annual General Meeting, Mrs. Suphajee Suthumpun, who discussed "Tourism in Thailand and Internationally".

Mrs. Suphajee Suthumpun is one of Thailand's most respected business leaders. She has been the Chief Executive Officer of international hospitality chain Dusit Thani Public Company Limited since the beginning of 2016. She was previously Chief Executive Officer at Thaicom, and before that the Country General Manager of IBM Thailand. She holds an MBA in International Finance and Accounting from Northrop University.

Dusit Thani is expanding its activities in hospitality, education and property development. Its hotel portfolio now covers the United Arab Emirates, the United States of America, South Africa, China, as well as Southeast Asia, and is planning continued growth in the years ahead. The company is also developing its presence in the education sector, building on its experience as the first hotel company to fully own and operate a leading hospitality college.

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The 62nd InterCham Young Professional Cocktail
(30 August 2016)

The 62nd InterCham Young Professional Cocktail was taken place on Tuesday 30 August, at the Azure Restaurant Slash Bar, Hotel LKF By Rhombus, 33 Wyndham Street Central, Hong Kong.

Let's meet and mingle with hundreds of professionals from 28 international business organisations in Hong Kong and find yourself in the perfect atmosphere after work, chilling on the amazing Azure's rooftop!

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China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable on "Economic Impact of Brexit to China and Asia"
(29 July 2016)

The China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable Panel on: "Economic Impact of Brexit to China and Asia", was scheduled on 29 July 2016 at HKU SPACE - Admiralty Learning Centre, Hong Kong.

While Prime Minister Theresa May and her new cabinet assure that Britain will continue to be a global player in the world after leaving the EU, uncertainties on its future relationship with major trading partners such as China and the rest of Asia remain. "Brexit" will affect Britain's dozens of trade agreements with Europe and the world, including the EU-Asia Free Trade Agreement. China, Asia and the Hong Kong SAR will be affected. Britain is Hong Kong's second largest trading partner in Europe which accounts for 65% of Hong Kong's European investment. What are the economic impact of "Brexit", and the strategic challenges and opportunities for business in the Hong Kong SAR, China and Asia?

This event brought together government leaders and CEOs, it was open to local and international media. Speakers included Mr. Zhou Li, Prof. N.R. Liu, Mr. Alexander Wan, Prof. Edward K.Y. Chen, Mr. Chen Shuang and Tan Sri Dato' Dr. Michael Yeoh.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honouable Leung Chun-ying, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(27 January 2016)

The HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Leung Chun-ying, has delivered his Policy Address to the Legislative Council on 27 January 2016. At this luncheon, the business community was able to hear Mr Leung's further elaboration on his Policy Address. Participants was also able to learn more about his initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, land supply, air quality and Hong Kong's competitiveness in the year ahead.
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China Daily Workshop at Asian Financial Forum "Leading Asia: Women as Change Agents, Innovators and Entrepreneurs"
(19 January 2016)

The China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable Panel on: "Leading Asia: Women as Change Agents, Innovators and Entrepreneurs", was scheduled at 2:30pm to 3:30pm on 19 January 2016 at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wanchai, Hong Kong.

Co-organized with Asian Financial Forum (AFF), this panel listened to success stories of Asian woman leaders and entrepreneurs from the financial, cultural, creative and other strategic sectors, who shared their lessons and recommendations for women to take ownership of their lives and in turn energize the society. This event attracted over 300 C-level senior executives from Fortune Global 500 and China 500 companies, think tanks, academics and media experts from public and private sectors across Asia. It opened to local and international media.

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The 9th Asian Financial Forum
(18-19 January 2016)

The 9th Asian Financial Forum (AFF) took place on 18 and 19 January 2016 in Hong Kong. The AFF brought together the global financial and business communities each year to examine the trends and developments in the dynamic markets of Asia and beyond. More than 2,600 leaders in government, finance and business from 39 countries and regions took part at the last Forum to gather intelligence, establish connections, and explore business and investment opportunities.

The theme for AFF 2016 was "Asia: Shaping the New Paradigm For Growth" and some new initiatives as below:

1. The Global Investment Summit launched to examine global investment trends, opportunities and challenges, with particular focus on the implications of the Belt and Road Initiative as well as the continued emergence of outbound investment from mainland enterprises.

The Summit kicked off with a dialogue between Mr. Vincent HS Lo, Chairman, Hong Kong Trade Development Council and Mr. Ding Xuedong, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, China Investment Corporation and to be followed by panel discussions featuring business leaders and investment experts. This Summit compliment the Global Investment Zone (showcasing worldwide investment agencies) and the AFF Deal Flow Matchmaking Session (featuring dedicated matching meetings between sources of funds and sources of deals) to further established the AFF as a business discussion platform.

2. A dedicated session on innovation and disruption, focusing on big data, Fin Tech and e-commerce, arranged to examine the changing global financial landscape.

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Pre-IBC meeting on 7 January 2016
(7 January 2016)

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Business of Intellectual Property (BIP) Asia Forum 2015
(3-4 December 2015)

Jointly organised by the Government of the HKSAR, Hong Kong Trade Development Council and Hong Kong Design Centre, the 5th Edition of Business of Intellectual Property Asia Forum (BIP Asia) brought IP professionals and business leaders from around the world to discuss the latest developments in IP and explore business collaboration opportunities.
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Hong Kong - ASEAN Summit 2015
(14 September 2015)

Organised by Metro Broadcast, the Hong Kong-ASEAN Summit 2015 held on Monday, 14 September 2015 at Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong.

Speakers included:

Mr. Gregory SO Kam Leung, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development of HKSAR (TBC)

Mr. Bernard CHAN, Executive Councilor, Hong Kong SAR & Chairman, HK-Thailand Business Council

Mr. Raymond YIP, Deputy Executive Director, Hong Kong Trade Development Council

Dr. Jonathan CHOI, Permanent Honorary President, The Chinese General Chamber of Commerce (TBC)

Mr. Alex CHEUNG, Managing Director and Head of Institutional Banking Group, DBS Bank (Hong Kong Limited)

Mr. Heung Shu Fai, Program Host of Metro Finance

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Thailand: A Regional Trading and Modern Industry Hub
(25 June 2015)

H.E. M.R. Pridiyathorn Devakula, Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, leaded a road show to Shanghai and Hong Kong from 23 to 26 June 2015. On this occasion the office of the Board of Investment organized the "Thailand: A Regional Trading and Modern Industry Hub" Seminar in Hong Kong on 25 June 2015, supported by Royal Thai Consulate - General in Hong Kong, Invest Hong Kong, Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), and Bank of China. The seminar provided insight into Thailand's new investment policies and investment opportunities, as well as highlight business cooperation between Thailand and Hong Kong.
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Buyer's Tour to the 117th Canton Fair
(16 April, 23 April, 4 May 2015)

China Import and Export Fair (Canton Fair) co-hosted biannually by the Ministry of Commerce of PRC and the People's Government of Guangdong Province, every spring and autumn in April and October with 3 phases. Each session of the Fair sees approximately 200,000 overseas buyers.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2015-2016 Budget with The Honourable John Tsang, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR
(19 March 2015)

HKSAR Financial Secretary, the Honourable John Tsang, has delivered his 2015-2016 Budget Speech to the Legislative Council on 25 February 2015. This joint business luncheon was an excellent opportunity for us to learn more about his thoughts and insights behind the new Budget. We also learned directly from the Financial Secretary about the Government's plans to steer its fiscal policy to sustain Hong Kong's economic growth and maintain our competitiveness.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honouable Leung Chun-ying, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(9 February 2015)

The HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Leung Chun-ying, has delivered his Policy Address to the Legislative Council on 9 February 2015. At this luncheon, the business community was able to hear Mr Leung's further elaboration on his Policy Address. Participants was also able to learn more about his initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, land supply, air quality and Hong Kong's competitiveness in the year ahead.
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Invitation to China Daily Co-branded Session at Asian Financial Forum in Hong Kong
(20 January 2015)

The China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable Panel on: "China, ASEAN and the New Silk Road - Global Financial Perspectives", were scheduled on January 20, 2015 at Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Wanchai, Hong Kong.

Co-organized with Asian Financial Forum (AFF), this panel aims at gathering top speakers from financial and related industries to share their views about the financial challenges and opportunities to China, ASEAN and the world. It is a platform to exchange market intelligence and explore new business opportunities across Asia.

"China, ASEAN and the New Silk Road - Global Financial Perspective"

China has initiated several strategic initiatives to boost investments and economy in Asia such as the "21st Century Maritime Silk Road", the "One Belt, One Road" and the "Silk Road Fund". These initiatives will reconnect strategic natural and economic resources and markets across Asia and Europe. In the meantime, the ASEAN Economy Community (AEC) will lift regional barriers for trade and investment among its member countries in 2015, which will create a 600 million population common market. With these improved connectivity and massive flows of capital, people and developments, what are the implications for the Chinese, ASEAN and the global economies? How would these initiatives reshape global economic gravity? What are the opportunities and challenges for Hong Kong and the Greater Pearl River Delta?

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Asian Financial Forum "Asia: Sustainable Development in a World of Change"
(19-20 January 2015)

The annual AFF bought together some of the most influential members of the global financial and business communities to discuss developments and trends in the dynamic markets of Asia and beyond. The seventh edition hold in January 2014 featured more than 100 distinguished speakers and over 2,400 participants from 41 countries and regions.

AFF 2015 examined Asia's role in creating growth for the reconstituting global economy under the theme of "Asia: Sustainable Development in a World of Change".

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Business of Intellectual Property (BIP) Asia Forum 2014 "Intellectual Property: Powering Business Expansion"
(4-5 December 2014)

The fourth edition of Business of Intellectual Property (BIP) Asia Forum held on 4-5 December 2014.

As mentioned by our Chief Executive Mr C Y Leung in the 2014 Policy Address, a Working Group on IP Trading has been set up to strategise the promotion of Hong Kong as an IP business hub. Together with the HKSAR Government's involvement in BIP Asia as the co-organiser, it is a very good example of the Government's strong focus on IP promotion.

The third edition of BIP Asia last year attracted 60 internationally renowned speakers from Hong Kong and overseas and over 1,700 participants from 24 countries and regions. Business of IP (BIP) Asia Forum 2014 continued to be an effective platform for attendees to discuss the latest developments in the IP world and explore potential business partnership through numerous business matching and networking opportunities.

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CRECCHK Anniversary Seminar "Greater China and ASEAN"
(1 December 2014)

To celebrate the 12th anniversary of China Real Estate Chamber of Commerce Hong Kong Chapter (CRECCHK), the Chapter has organized an Anniversary Seminar at the Asia Society Hong Kong Center on 1 December 2014.

Professor Anthony Cheung Bing Leung, Secretary for Transport and Housing, the Hong Kong SAR Government, has been invited as the Keynote speaker. Other guest speakers included Datuk Raymond Tan Shu Kiah, Minister Industrial Development Sabah and Mr. Mao Da Qing, Executive Vice President, Vanke China, who gave a speech on "Living Quality Aspirations". The Seminar marked as the first of a series of seminars, workshops and research on Living Quality Aspirations in Asia for the next two years of the Chapter.

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Hong Kong - ASEAN Summit 2014: Prospects and Opportunities: Hong Kong-ASEAN Trade
(20 October 2014)

Event organized by Metro Broadcast at Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong.

Speakers included:

Mr. Bernard Chan, Executive Councilor, Hong Kong SAR; Chairman, Hong Kong - Thailand Business Council

Mr. David Carbon, Chief Economist, DBS Bank

Dr. Jonathan Choi, Permanent Honorary President, The Chinese General Chamber of Commerce

Mr. Nicholas Kwan, Director of Research, Hong Kong Trade Development Council

Mr. Alex Cheung, Managing Director and Head of Institutional Banking Group

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2014
(15 September 2014)

About 15 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2013 saw Thailand's economy performed well, given the uncertainties in the world, while the government proceeded with reforms in such areas as education. The Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. We also continued to develop ties with other organizations.

Mr. Horst Geicke, Mr William Chao, Mr Yu Yee Lam and Mr Benjamin Yiu Chung Cha were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 12 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

11) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

12) Mr. Benjamin Cha, Executive Director of HKR International Ltd

It was our Council's pleasure and honour to have the opportunity to co-organise with The Royal Thai Consulate-General, a luncheon & panel discussion on the "ASEAN - Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement: Challenges and Opportunities", right after our Annual General Meeting on 15 September 2014. The Panel Discussion provided a platform for stakeholders in the public and private sectors to exchange views on potential challenges and opportunities arising from the ASEAN - V Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement (FTA). Currently under negotiation, the prospects for an FTA among these giant economies bear significant implications on the future of the business community in the region. Participants from ASEAN and Hong Kong updated with the latest developments of the negotiation, research and studies, and experiences on the benefits derived from and challenges posed by the FTA.

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Inland Revenue Department: International Trend on Tax Transparency and Hong Kong's Treaty Network
(10 July 2014)

In July 2013, Hong Kong has put in place legislative amendments to align Hong Kong's exchange of information arrangements with the prevailing international standard. This is a vital step to enable Hong Kong to preserve its international reputation and achieve the "Largely Compliant" rating under the peer review exercise carried out by the OECD Global Forum on Tax Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. To keep abreast with the development in the international arena, Inland Revenue Department of HKSAR has invited Mr. Pascal Saint-Amans, Director of the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration at the OECD, to share with us the international landscape on tax transparency and other tax jurisdictions?? experience.

You may be aware that in May 2014 the Declaration on Automatic Exchange of Information in Tax Matters was endorsed during the OECD's annual Ministerial Council meeting in Paris by all 34 member countries, along with 13 other jurisdictions. Mr. Saint-Amans talked about the international trend on tax transparency, in particular the hot topics concerning automatic exchange of information and the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters. The Commissioner of Inland Revenue shared with the audience the progress of Hong Kong in treaty negotiation.

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Seminar on Regional Market Update Series: Thailand's Opportunities Amid Challenges: Focusing on Fundamentals
(7 July 2014)

Hong Kong Securities and Investment Institute (HKSI) has invited Dr Pakorn Peetathawatchai, Executive Vice President, Head of Corporate Strategy & Finance Division, The Stock Exchange of Thailand to speak to us in Hong Kong in their notable Regional Market Update Series. He talked about the opportunities and challenges facing the Thai economy; the impact of political uncertainty on the Thai stock exchange; the resilience of Thai listed companies; and the role of Thai capital market as regional financial connectivity.
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Intercham event: Women's Leadership Network Seminar Series: Authentic Leadership
(23 June 2014)

Public Policy, Governmental and Regulatory Affairs Head for Google Italy, Giorgia Abeltino addressd the cornerstone of leadership, authenticity, and how much it represents today a key issue for women's career. Ms. Abeltino discussed the following points: uniqueness, confidence, impact and leadership. She provided practical examples of Google's policy about diversity and inclusion, not only related to race, sex and religion, but also to diversity of views and beliefs.

The seminar was followed by a Q&A session and a networking opportunity.

The event was kindly supported by Acqua di Parma.

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NEST Demo Day
(7 May 2014)

NEST is Hong Kong's pre-eminent start up incubator. They invest in, build and scale high-growth businesses in Hong Kong and Asia. They are always seeking the truly disruptive and aim to develop Hong Kong as a global hub in entrepreneurship.

They have partnered with KPMG to present the most exciting businesses in their eco system to investors in a Silicon Valley-styled Demo Day event. It was a fast-paced event where 10+ companies has pitched their businesses, followed by breakout sessions to meet the founders and learn about these opportunities in details.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2014-2015 Budget with The Honourable John Tsang, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR
(20 March 2014)

HKSAR Financial Secretary, the Honourable John Tsang, has deliverd his 2014-2015 Budget Speech to the Legislative Council on 26 February 2014.

This joint business luncheon was an excellent opportunity for us to learn more about his thoughts and insights behind the new Budget. We also learned directly from the Financial Secretary about the Government's plans to steer its fiscal policy to sustain Hong Kong's economic growth and maintain our competitiveness.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honouable Leung Chun-ying, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(23 January 2014)

The HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Leung Chun-ying, has delivered his Policy Address to the Legislative Council on 15 January 2014. At this luncheon, the business community was able to hear Mr Leung's further elaboration on his Policy Address. Participants was also able to learn more about his initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, land supply, air quality and Hong Kong's competitiveness in the year ahead.
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Luncheon with Professor Dr. Chira Hongladarom "ASEAN-Hong Kong Economic and Business Partnership"
(15 January 2014)

Professor Chira is a renowned micro-economics and development and human resources economics academic. He currently serves as Secretary-General, Foundation for International Human Resource Development. He is also Chairman, of Asia Pacific Consultants Ltd, of Stamford International University Council, and of Integrated Human Development Center (iHDC).

He was the founder and Executive Director of the Human Resources Institute, Thammasat University, and was Vice Rector for Research and Academic Services at Thammasat University. Among the many positions he has held are: Advisor to Thai government officials from Prime Minister-level down; Chairman of the Advisory Council for Labour Development, and Member of the Tourism Authority of Thailand Board. He has also served as an Advisor to the International Labour Organization and the World Bank.

He also has wide experience in other public and business areas and has produced reports and publications on various social, economic and market subjects. He has taught at Thammasat, Chiangmai, Kasetsart, Songkla Nakarin and Assumption Universities in Thailand as well as the National Defense College and at other institutions in Asia and the USA. He is also a broadcaster, columnist and speaker.

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Asian Financial Forum "Asia: Powering World Growth"
(13-14 January 2014)

The 7th Asian Financial Forum (AFF) featured the theme "Asia: Powering World Growth", presenting participants with a unique opportunity to spotlight developments and trends in the dynamic markets of Asia.

AFF Deal Flow Matchmaking Session, which was a pre-arranged deal-sourcing and matchmaking session for project owners, high net-worth individuals, corporate investors and senior professionals from intermediaries and professional services providers. Riding on the trend of China's outbound in investment, AFF Deal Flow featured dedicated matching meetings between Chinese investors seeking investment opportunities abroad, and overseas project owners looking for Asian capital.

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Business of Intellectual Property Asia Forum
(5-6 December 2013)

The Hong Kong Trade Development Council has kindly offered our council complimentary tickets to attend their Business of Intellectual Property Asia Forum (BIP Asia).

The BIP Asia is the HKTDC's annual anchor IP event, aiming at facilitating international enterprises to manage and monetize their IP as part of their overall business strategy through the Hong Kong platform, which has distinct advantages serving as the regional IP marketplace. Last year, the 2nd edition of the event attracted 39 internationally renowned speakers from Hong Kong and overseas and over 1,400 participants from 23 countries and regions.

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ASEAN Community Reception
(21 November 2013)

Invest Hong Kong hosted a cocktail reception for the ASEAN business communities in Hong Kong, to thank for their support of Hong Kong over the years and to introduce their programme of investment promotion initiatives for South East Asia.
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Seizing Opportunities in Evolving ASEAN
(22 October 2013)

Co-organised by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, the Hong Kong-ASEAN Business Partnership Symposium updated us on the latest trade and investment opportunities of the booming ASEAN market. The role of Hong Kong in ASEAN's economic integration process was highlighted. Economic ministers of the ten ASEAN member countries each led a business delegation to attend the event.

This Symposium was a unique opportunity for Hong Kong SMEs to learn first-hand information from the participating ASEAN senior government officials about the great potential of this thriving market and to build networks with the ASEAN business delegates.

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2013
(23 September 2013)

About 18 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2012 saw Thailand's economy performed well, given the uncertainties in the world, while the government proceeded with reforms in such areas as education. The Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. We also continued to develop ties with other organizations.

Mr. Willy Lin, JP, Mr. Raphael Tong, MR. Kenneth Gaw and Mr. Tom C Chatjaval were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 12 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

11) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

12) Mr. Benjamin Cha, Executive Director of HKR International Ltd

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Ms. Barbara Meybert, Chairman of the Regional Connectivity Task Force of United Nations ?V Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, Business Advisory Council, and Board Member of the Fung Global Institute.

Business leader and entrepreneur, Barbara Meynert has enjoyed an international career in investment banking, commercial and regulatory institutions, and board directorships in the corporate and non-profit sectors in Asia and Europe. She has served such global organizations as the World Economic Forum and the International Chamber of Commerce.

Barbara Meynert has been a long-time director and advisor to the Li and Fung Group and subsidiary companies. She served as a director and advisor in the establishment of both the Hong Kong Airport Authority and the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission. Before that, she was Managing Director of Barclays Investment Bank BZW in Hong Kong and Asia following her position as Chief Executive of Kredietbank Luxembourg??s Asia-Pacific operations.

A graduate of the University of Hong Kong and the London School of Economics, Barbara Meynert is based in Bangkok.

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HKTBC event: Invitation to Luncheon with Chow Chung-kong
(29 July 2013)

C K Chow is the Chairman of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited. He is also a non-official member of the Executive Council of the HKSAR, and holds a number of other public service positions. Prior to joining HKEx, Chow was the Chief Executive Officer of the MTR Corporation Limited from 2003 to 2011; the Chief Executive Officer of Brambles Industries PLC, a global support services company listed in the UK and Australia, from 2001 to 2003; and the Chief Executive of GKN PLC, a global engineering company, from 1997 to 2001. Mr. Chow's extensive business experiences made him a very interesting luncheon companion.

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Changing Boardrooms
(11 June 2013)

In recent years, both in Hong Kong and internationally, an increased attention has been placed on board diversity, and, in particular, on the need to include more women in boardroom. How can this be achieved? Ms. Stefania Lucchetti, partner at Howse Williams Bowers, discussed the environmental and personal elements that help the rise of women to leadership position at this luncheon event.
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Matthieu Ricard: Experiences of a Buddhist Monk for Sustainable Corporations
(6 June 2013)

Matthieu Ricard is well-known for his humanitarian work, and books about happiness and Buddhism, and most people wouldn't expect him to be involved in corporate affairs, while in fact, he is a regular guest at the Davos World Economic Forum. How can a French Buddhist monk contribute in a world leaders' gathering? This was one of the many questions Matthieu Ricard answered during this Breakfast event, where he also discussed how altruism should be an essential value in order to run a sustainable corporation.
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Practical tips in establishing a presence in China
(29 May 2013)

China has established itself as one of the most popular destinations for foreign direct investments. Eyeing on the vast market in China, many foreign investors are interested in establishing a foothold in China.

Establishing a wholly foreign-owned enterprise (WFOE) in China may seem to be a convenient option to start. However, foreign investors may have heard mixed comments about the success in running a WFOE in China. This seminar equipped the attendees with the necessary knowledge to get things right in the beginning so as to avoid future problems.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2013-2014 Budget with the Honourable John Tsang, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR
(18 March 2013)

Mr. Tsang has accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community on March 18, 2013 about his budget. This joint business luncheon offered an excellent opportunity for us to learn more about his thoughts and insights behind the new Budget. Participants learnt directly from the Financial Secretary about this year's Budget and how we can sustain economic prosperity for future growth and maintain Hong Kong's competitiveness.

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2013/2014 Hong Kong Budget - V An Analysis from the Tax Perspective
(6 March 2013)

The Financial Secretary Mr. John Tsang delivered the Hong Kong Budget Speech 2013/2014 on February 27. Looking ahead to the coming Budget, you may have some of the following questions in mind: Will there be any implications of the 2013/2014 Budget tax proposals to you and your business? Will there be any opportunities laid out in the Budget tax proposals that could benefit your organization? How will the Budget impact your business from the tax perspective?

Ernst & Young's tax partner Ms. Tracy Ho and senior manager Ms. Kathy Kun had taken the participants through the key tax issues and implications of the 2013/2014 Budget tax proposals. And they shared their in-depth perspectives on the Budget tax proposals and clarified these proposals during this interactive A & A session.

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The 52nd InterCham Young Professional Cocktail
(6 February 2013)

Organized by the New Zealand Chamber of Commerce and the Austrian Chamber of Commerce, the YP Cocktail provided an excellent opportunity to meet and mingle with professionals from over 27 different international chambers and business organizations in Hong Kong.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honourable Leung Chun-ying, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(23 January 2013)

The HKSAR Chief Executive, the Honourable Leung Chun-ying, deliverd his first Policy Address to the Legislative Council in mid-January 2013.

We are deeply honoured that Mr Leung has accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community at a joint luncheon At this luncheon, the business community were able to hear Mr Leung's further elaboration on his Policy Address. Participants were able to learn more about his initiatives and directives for tackling key issues, such as housing, old age benefits, air quality and Hong Kong's competitiveness in the year ahead.

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Asian Financial Forum "Asia: Shaping the Next Global Landscape"
(14-15 January 2013)

The lingering sovereign debt crisis in the Eurozone, a tepid recovery in the US, and the slowdown in emerging markets continued to have profound impact on the global economy. AFF 2013 focused on how Asia is shaping the next global landscape and what business strategies companies might adopt under this new economic order.

Organised by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, AFF 2013 featured some of the world's most influential leaders in government, financial and business sectors and they were

Dai Xianglong, Chairman, National Council for Social Security Fund (invited)

Charles L. Evans, President and Chief Executive Officer, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

Lawrence H. Summers, Charles W. Eliot University Professor, Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government

Datuk Ranjit Ajit Singh, Chairman, Securities Commission Malaysia

Saeb Eigner, Chairman, Dubai Financial Services Authority

Ning Gaoning, Chairman, COFCO

Pan Shiyi, Chairman, SOHO China Ltd

... and many more.

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2012
(28 September 2012)

About 20 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2011 was an eventful one for Thailand and indeed the world, and the Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. The Council continued to develop ties with other organizations. Our Chairman, Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, summarized the past activities of the Council and stressed that the mission in 2013 and beyond was again, to expand the number and range of activities.

Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, Dr. Harry Lee, Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP and Mr. Clayton T. Hebbard were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 12 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

11) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

12) Mr. Benjamin Cha, Executive Director of HKR International Ltd

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Dr. Narongchai Akrasanee, Ph.D, Former Minister of Commerce, Senator of Thailand and Member of the National Legislative Assembly.

Dr. Narongchai has served as Minister of Commerce, a Senator of Thailand and a Member of the National Legislative Assembly. Among many posts over the years he has also been a Dean of the Faculty of Economics at Thammasat University, a consultant to the World Bank and Asian Development Bank, and an advisor to many Prime Ministers of Thailand. He retired as chairman of the Export-Import Bank of Thailand at the end of June 2010.

He is currently Honorary Advisor to the Fiscal Policy Research Institute, Chairman of the Board of Directors of MFC Asset Management Plc and Chairman of Brooker Group Plc. Among his many public service positions, he also serves with the National Economic and Social Development Board, the Monetary Policy Committee, the Office of Insurance Commission and the Thailand Development Research Institute.

He received B.Ec. Degree with honors from the University of Western Australia, and M.A. and Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University.

Dr. Narongchai's insight into Thai affairs is considerable and highly regarded, and his views of the current economic and the political situations are sure to be of great interest.

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Intercham event: Indonesia: Overview, Opportunities & Challenges
(20 September 2012)

Indonesia, the 3rd most populous country in Asia with more than 250 million inhabitants spread over more than 17,000 islands has lately become the Asian 'darling' of the international markets. Recent political and economic reforms have resulted in achieving a coveted investment grade rating by Moody's and Fitch. Combined with abundance in natural resources, relatively low wages, beautiful holiday destinations and a growing middle class, it is not surprising that internationally operating companies are becoming more and more interested in Indonesia. Economic growth has been above 6% p.a during the past couple of years but contrary to some other countries in Asia, primarily domestically driven rather than by exports. It is clear that a country with these economic and demographic conditions offers great opportunities as well as challenges to international companies. Theodoor Bakker and Alex Jaminon were the guest speakers at this event.
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Intercham event: Lunch seminar "Scaling for Luxury, with E-commerce and Social Media"
(4 September 2012)

Building a brand in the Internet era is a challenge for any company, but the difficulty is even greater in the luxury category. These issues are even bigger now that digital presence involves interacting with customers through Social Media and transacting with them through e-Commerce. How can we ensure a consistent luxury feel? What superior brand experiences can we offer consumers? Can some consumers become advocates and ambassadors?

Guest speaker Thomas Crampton, the Asia Pacific head of social media at Ogilvy and Mather and Giulia Callegari, ecommerce and luxury consultant at Ogilvy and Mather, shared with us the luxury brand's take on social media and pervasive commerce at the lunch seminar.

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42nd Congregation & Luncheon of Lingnan University
(17 April 2012)

The Congregation was held at the Chan Tak Tai Auditorium of Lingnan University for the conferment of the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters to Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand.
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Dinner with Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand
(17 April 2012)

The dinner was hosted by Asia Society of Hong Kong.

Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand's affection for Chinese people and culture is well-documented. She was voted as one of the top "Best International Friends of China" and the only South East Asian awarded this honor. Besides speaking Chinese, her understanding and knowledge of Chinese culture is extensive and garnered during several official and private visits to China. In addition to her royal duties, HRH is also deeply involved in several philanthropic organizations and foundations like Thai Red Cross Society, Chaipattana Foundation (promoting development and environmental preservation projects), and the Ananda Mahidol Foundation (promoting higher education). HRH has taught the General Education Program at Chulalongkorn University. She joined the Department of Law and Social Sciences at Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy in 1980, and is currently Director of the Department of History. HRH graduated from Chulalongkorn University, holds MAs from Silpakorn University and Chulalongkorn University, and was awarded a doctoral degree from Srinakharinwirot University.

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Luncheon with Mr. Kittiratt Na-Ranong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Thailand
(16 February 2012)

On this special occasion, Mr. Kittiratt Na-Ranong delivered his keynote speech on "Thailand's Economic Enhancing Policies after the Flood" during our luncheon organized by the Stock Exchange of Thailand, Deutsche Bank and Tisco Securities.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honourable Donald Tsang, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(2 November 2011)

We were deeply honoured that Mr. Tsang has accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community at a joint luncheon held on Wednesday, 2 November 2011. At the luncheon, Mr. Tsang further elaborated his policy address and the guests were able to learn more about the initiatives and directives on tackling issues about housing, ageing population and wealth gap, in the year ahead.
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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2011
(27 September 2011)

About 25 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2010 was an eventful one for Thailand and indeed the world, and the Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. The Council continued to develop ties with other organizations. Our Chairman, Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, summarized the past activities of the Council and stressed that the mission in 2012 and beyond was again, to expand the number and range of activities.

Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Mr. Kenneth Gaw, Mr. Horst Geicke, Mr. William Chao, Mr. Benjamin Lam and Mr. Benjamin Cha were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 12 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

11) Mr. Benjamin Lam, Executive Director & Deputy CEO of Pacific Century Premium Development Ltd

12) Mr. Benjamin Cha, Executive Director of HKR International Ltd

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Mr. Pana Janviroj, President of The Nation, Thailand. He is also Executive Director of Asia News Network (ANN), an alliance of 21 leading newspapers from 18 Asian Countries (including China Daily). He was editor of The Nation from 1996-2005. His keynote speech at our luncheon was "Thailand's Latest Political and Economic Development".

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Sovereign debt woes and their worldwide implications: what is ahead
(7 July 2011)

In May 2010, Greece was the first country to receive a multi-billion EU/IMF bail-out. The hope was that this would be a one-off, but the crisis has brought a seemingly endless route of twists and turns that have seen Ireland and Portugal join the bail-out list and brought about the most important re-think of the European project since the single currency was shaped in the late 1990's. Sovereign debt woes are not just a concern in the euro area, moreover. The US was placed on credit watch negative by S&P in April 2011 and Japan struggles with its own issues on public finances.

Can the Euro area build a fiscal framework this time? Are Japanese public finances the next domino? Is there still a safe-haven if the US is downgraded? Will bond markets or currencies shoulder the greater burden of adjustment to new sovereign risk premia? Will Greece restructure soon? Our top experts speakers from Societe Generale provided us an in-depth discussion of these questions and the implications for financial markets at this meeting on July 7.

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Joint Chamber Luncheon: The 12th 5-year plan as an indicator for the future of Hong Kong with The Honorable Mrs. Fan Hsu Lai Tai, Rita, GBM, GBS, JP
(13 April 2011)

Dr. Rita FAN, currently a Member of the Standing Committee of the Eleventh session of the NPC, was elected as a Hong Kong Deputy to both the Ninth and Tenth sessions of the National People's Congress ("NPC") between 1998 and 2007.

In Hong Kong, Dr. FAN has served as President of the legislature of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region ("HKSAR") for 11 years, and became President of the Provisional Legislative Council in 1997. Prior to that, Dr. FAN was appointed to the Legislative Council from 1983 to 1992 and was a Member of the Executive Council from 1989 to 1992.

Dr. FAN was awarded the Gold Bauhinia Star and the Grand Bauhinia Medal in 1998 and 2007 respectively by the Government of the HKSAR.

In a recent SCMP poll, Mrs. Rita Fan was the favourite candidate for the election of Hong Kong's next Chief Executive.

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Joint Chamber Luncheon with W. John Hoffmann and Tibor Baranski "The need to ride two horses in China - How to optimize your China business and investment during the 12th Five Year Plan"
(30 March 2011)

China's national outline 12th Five Year Plan (12FYP) was approved in March 2011. In order to make sure you do good business and make sound investments during this period (2011 - 2015), you not only need to know what is in the 12FYP but you also need to understand the legal dimension of political succession in China and keep track of two very different generations of China's top decision-makers during this five year planning cycle (the two "horses"): China's current Fourth Generation leaders (Horse #1) who are now making this 12FYP and will be in charge of implementing it as it rolls out in 2011 but they will retire in 2012-13; and their Fifth Generation successors (Horse #2) who will take over leadership nation-wide in 2012-13 including all of 12FYP implementation work through end-2015. In what aspects will this rising new generation of leaders impact and your China plans be impacted by the laws related to succession, how will these new leaders differ from their predecessors, and how might these differences change the way in which China will be governed, how will the 12FYP be implemented and how can you optimize your business and investment in China during this period?

W. John Hoffmann is a well-known and leading China expert. He is the Co-Founder and Principle of Exceptional Resources Group - XRG and China Dialogues Network - CDN.

Tibor Baranski, Esq. is a well-respected and leading China lawyer. He is Counsel at Jun He Law Offices.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon : 2011-2012 Budget with the Honorable John Tsang, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR
(1 March 2011)

The Financial Secretary, the Honorable John Tsang delivered the 2011-2012 Budget Speech at the Legislative Council on Wednesday, 23 February 2011.

The Joint Business Community Luncheon was an excellent and timely opportunity to learn directly from Mr. Tsang his further elaboration on this year's budget and how he would lead us for dealing with the global financial crisis and sustaining the economic prosperity for future growth of Hong Kong.

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Asian Financial Forum "Asia: Reshaping the Global Agenda"
(17 Jan 2011)

Co-organised by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, AFF 2011 featured some of the world's most important persons in the financial sector and influential business leaders.

Under the theme "Asia: Reshaping the Global Agenda", AFF 2011 covered a variety of current issues, including how Asian enterprises compete in the global arena, policies to tackle inflationary pressure on assets and consumer prices, currency exchange rates and trade balance, internationalization of Renminbi, financial opportunities arising from resources scarcity, etc.

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Luncheon event "Thai Hom Mali Rice" with Minister of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government Mrs. Porntiva Nakasai
(13 December 2010)

To promote the new corp of Thai Hom Mali Rice this year, Mrs. Porntiva Nakasai, Minister of Commerce of the Royal Thai Government, hosted a luncheon event on December 13 in Hong Kong and delivered a speech aiming to share the quality of real Thai Hom Mali Rice.
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Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council Luncheon Event "Thailand: What Next?" with Mr. Dusit Nontanakorn
(22 November 2010)

Mr. Dusit Nontanakorn, one of Thailand's most accomplished businessmen with extensive experience particularly in the construction industry; he currently serves as Chairman of Thai Chamber of Commerce and Board of Trade. Among his other roles, he serves on the Board of Investment of Thailand, the Thai Institute of Directors and numerous other public and corporate bodies. He also played rugby for the Thai nation team in 1974!

As head of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Dusit Nontanakorn has led the Thai business community's calls for different sides in the kingdom's domestic political disputes to resolve their differences and work together to enable the country's economy to flourish and benefit the whole population. His insight into the situation in Thailand was of great interest to all HKTBC members.

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honourable Donald Tsang, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(3 November 2010)

We were deeply honoured that Mr. Tsang has accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community at a joint luncheon held on Monday, 3 November 2010. At the luncheon, Mr. Tsang further elaborated his policy address and the guests were able to learn more about the initiatives put forth by the HKSAR Government in the year ahead.
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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2010
(27 September 2010)

About 30 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2009 was an eventful one for Thailand and indeed the world, and the Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. The Council continued to develop ties with other organizations. Our Chairman, Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, summarized the past activities of the Council and stressed that the mission in 2011 and beyond was again, to expand the number and range of activities.

Mr. Bernard Chan. GBS, JP, Mr. Raphael Tong and Mr. Willy Lin Sun Mo, JP were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 10 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Mr. Dennis Brown, Corporate Chief Executive Officer of Bumrungrad Hospital Public Company Limited and Chief Executive Officer of Bumrungrad International Limited. Prior to joining Bumrungrad, he was CEO of Mount Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore. Mr. Brown has worked in the healthcare field in Thailand, the United States, Australia and Singapore for a total of 29 years, much of the time in multi-facility management and hospital operations.

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Intercham's Luncheon Event "Will The Global Economy Fall Back Into Recession?" with Dr. Joerg Kraemer
(24 August 2010)

Since spring 2009, the global economy has been growing again. However, there are significant risks. The euro-zone suffers from a sovereign debt crisis, high US unemployment has hardly fallen and growth in China may slow down markedly.

Dr. Joerg Kraemer, Chief Economist of Commerz Bank, critically analysed these risks. He gave an outlook for the US, European and Asian Economies and demonstrated what this could mean for FX and fixed income markets.

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The 43rd InterCham Young Professionals Cocktail
(10 August 2010)

Co-organized by the New Zealand Chamber of Commerce, Danish Chamber of Commerce and Hong Kong Bahrain Business Association, the 43rd InterCham YP Cocktail provided an excellent opportunity for all of us to meet and mingle with professionals from over 27 different international chambers and business organizations in Hong Kong.

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Intercham's Breakfast Event "Entry of Professionals & Talent and Related Immigration Matters" with Mr. Y S Wong
(24 June 2010)

This informal breakfast session gave a unique opportunity for members to keep themselves updated on news regarding Visa issues, and to have the chance to ask their specific immigration questions.
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Intercham's Breakfast Seminar "Veolia's Commitment To Preserve The Iconic 'Ding-Ding' Trams Heritage"
(15 June 2010)

Speaker Bruno Charrade, Managing Director of Hong Kong Tramways Ltd. talked about what and how Veolia intends to improve while preserving the tradition; why such a take-over has been accepted; how Veolia's communicates and builds a new trustful relationship with the local population and users; from a HR perspective, which management style and actions this change of ownership will bring, or are necessary.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2010-2011 Budget with Financial Secretary The Honourable John Tsang
(12 March 2010)

The Financial Secretary, the Honourable John Tsang, delivered the 2010 - 2011 Budget speech at the Legislative Council on Wednesday, February 24, 2010.

It was an excellent opportunity to learn directly from Mr Tsang his further elaboration on this year's budget and how he would lead us for sustaining the solid economic foundation for future growth of Hong Kong.

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Joint Chambers's Luncheon Event "Retail in China in the Current Environment by Dr. Eden Woon"
(5 March 2010)

In January 2010, Dr. Eden Woon was named the Managing Director of Li & Fung Group's China Corporate Office, based in Shanghai. He is responsible for representing the Li & Fung Group in China, for advising the Group on China strategy and business development, and for developing and nurturing long-term relationships with government and media in China.

From 2007 to 2009, Dr. Eden Woon was the Managing Director-China of Toys LiFung Limited-a member of the Li & Fung Group, responsible for developing the Toys "R" Us business in Mainland China.

From 2006 to 2007, Dr. Woon was Vice-President, Greater China for Starbucks Coffee Company.

Dr. Woon was the CEO of the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, the oldest and largest business organization in Hong Kong, from 1997 to 2006.

A career U.S. Air Force officer who retired as a Colonel in 1993, Dr. Woon served as China policy advisor for the U.S. Secretary of Defense from 1989-94, and was assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Beijing from 1983-85. Dr. Woon continues to be an economic advisor for a number of provinces and cities in China. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.

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The 42nd InterCham Young Professionals Cocktail
(24 February 2010)

Fabulous socializing and networking event co-organized by the Spanish Chamber of Commerce, Canadian Chamber of Commerce and Japanese Chamber of Commerce. This event provided an excellent opportunity to meet and mingle with professionals from over 20 different chambers and business organizations. Proceeds (after deducting necessary expenses) were donated to Hong Kong Cancer Fund in support for their free cancer services.

Click here to see more photos

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Joint Chambers' Breakfast Event "AFTER COP15: WHAT'S NEXT FOR BUSINESS? Breakfast Meeting and Panel Discussion"
(28 January 2010)

This session took the form of an address by Mr Simon Reddy, Executive Director of C40 Large Cities Climate Leadership Group focusing on the way forward for global efforts in managing climate change.

The second part of this important session was a panel discussion with Hong Kong delegates who were at the COP15 meeting in December 2009.

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HKTBC Luncheon with Mr. Manoorat Lertkomolsuk, Chief Executive Officer of Thailand's Marketing Organization for Farmers
(02 December 2009)

Manoorat Lertkomolsuk is the Chief Executive Officer of Thailand's Marketing Organization for Farmers, a State Enterprise operating under Thailand's Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives.

Educated in the United States, Manoorat had a distinguished career in finance and banking in Thailand before being appointed to his current position earlier this year.

Established in 1975, the Marketing Organization for Farmers (MoF) serves a critical role of helping Thai farmers achieve better quality-lives by developing value-added products that produce higher overall incomes.

The MoF operates popular markets in strategic locations throughout Thailand. It also operates and manages warehouses that are a critical part of the Thai government's annual rice-pledging programs.

During the luncheon, Manoorat presented his innovative new ideas and the MoF's overall strategy to us.

Click here to see more photos

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Joint Business Community Luncheon with The Honourable Donald Tsang, Chief Executive of the HKSAR
(02 November 2009)

We were deeply honoured that Mr. Tsang has accepted our invitation to talk to the Hong Kong business community at a joint luncheon held on Monday, 2 November 2009. At the luncheon, Mr. Tsang further elaborated his policy address and the guests were able to learn more about the initiatives put forth by the HKSAR Government in the year ahead.

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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2009
(29 September 2009)

About 35 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. The year 2008 was an eventful one for Thailand and indeed the world, and the Council played its part in keeping members informed about the changing political and economic situation in the Kingdom and the affects of global events on Hong Kong and the Mainland. The Council continued to develop ties with other organizations. Our Chairman, Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, summarized the past activities of the Council and stressed that the mission in 2010 and beyond was again, to expand the number and range of activities.

Mr. Clayton T. Hebbard, Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP and Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors. The current Board of Directors consists of 10 directors:

1) Mr. Bernard Chan, GBS, JP, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton T. Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, SBS, JP, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, JP, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Mr. Sirivat Voravetvuthikun (The Sandwich Man), Advisor of Sirivat Sandwich. The story of the Sandwich Man is a story of resilience and recovery. Sirivat Voravetvuthikun graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 1974 and went into finance and securities. By the early 1990s he was a multi-millionaire. Then came the 1994 stock market crash, which wiped out his investment business, and then the IMF year of 1997, which wiped out his high-end condominium project. He was left with nothing.

He ended up making sandwiches and selling them on the street to make just a few hundred baht a day. Through hard work and an amazing spirit, he slowly built up this new business. Today, he is a success once more, running a chain of coffee shops and a catering operation. But Thailand still faces challenges, and entrepreneurs like the Sandwich Man are bound to be affected directly or indirectly by the global slowdown and the domestic instability that have hit tourism and investment in the kingdom.

The Sandwich Man, who is a symbol of optimism for Thais, talked about the current situation and the future of Thailand at the luncheon.

Click here to see more photos

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APEC CEO SUMMIT 2009 LUNCHEON UPDATE @ THAILAND
(07 September 2009)

The APEC CEO Summit Singapore 2009 (12-14 November) is the premier business event for the Asia-Pacific. It will pull together the most brilliant of minds to address the current economic landscape, identify the direction of future trends and assess areas of collaboration for the Asia-Pacific region.

The theme of the APEC CEO Summit 2009 is "Rebuilding the Global Economy: Crisis and Opportunity". Outstanding and influential APEC Leaders, business figures and thought leaders will discuss and debate some of the most pertinent socio-economic and business issues facing the Asia-Pacific region today. Over 800 senior business figures from across the Asia Pacific and beyond will gather in the lion city to listen to, network with and engage in discussion with APEC Leaders and the region's key decision maker. The organizing committee is honoured and delighted to receive the official confirmation of acceptance of His Excellency Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva of Kingdom of Thailand to speak at the Summit in Singapore.

In order to encourage more members of the Thai private sector to participate in this powerful global forum, the organizing committee organized a special luncheon with prominent Thai business leaders in Bangkok on Monday, 7 September 2009, to update them on the benefits of attending the CEO Summit. The committee invited His Excellency Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva to be the keynote speaker.

As members of Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council, we were cordially invited to join this significant luncheon event.

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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "Worldwide Recession - How Deep, How Long?"
(20 August 2009)

The world economy is undergoing its deepest recession since World War II. History suggests that the correction of housing and credit market excesses does deepen and lengthen the downturn. The downward spiral is not yet broken.

While huge economic stimulus packages may stabilize the main economies towards year-end and planned investments in infrastructure, renewable energy and education on top may have effects on export oriented economies, such as Germany or other western European countries, however, risks and uncertainty remain unusually high due to the magnitude, momentum and global nature of the crisis. It is natural in times of uncertainty to seek protection. This may be the psychological reason why we can observe a resurgence of nationalism. It may also be the reason why we seem to choose to blame globalization for the ills of today. While seeking refuge in the familiar is an understandable reaction, it will not get us very far in our efforts to find the right solutions to the challenges that our interconnected, intertwined and interdependent countries face. At this luncheon, Prof. Walter shared his in-sight about the global economy in a year to come with us.

Prof. Norbert Walter is Managing Director of Deutsche Bank Research, and Chief Economist of the Deutsche Bank Group. He manages Deutsche Bank Research, Deutsche Bank's think tank, which covers a wide spectrum of issues ranging from economic forecasting to country rating and sector analysis.

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Joint Chambers's Luncheon Event "Your China Operations and You: Hatching a Strategy for Better Returns"
(21 July 2009)

Amid the economic doom and gloom, China still provides optimism for both existing and potential investors. Coupled, however, with this potential growth and the associated returns, is a marked trend towards increasing regulatory compliance requirements.

Careful thought and planning is, therefore, necessary in order to achieve a balance between the rationalization of your China operations within larger Group operations and regulatory compliance.

This interactive presentation with guest speakers Ms. Adelene Sung-Pei Wee and Mr. Michael Velten, aimed to provide an introduction to various elements foreign investors may wish to consider with a view to maximizing returns on their China investments vis-a-vis regulatory issues with regard to related party transactions.

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Thai Prime Minster's visit to Hong Kong
(15 May 2009)

The Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva made a one-day visit to Hong Kong on 15 May 2009 to reaffirm investors' confidence in Thailand. Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) hosted a luncheon for the Honourable Prime Minister to deliver keynote address to the business leaders in Hong Kong.

Gist of PM Abhisit Vejjajiva's Address at the Foreign Correspondents' Club, Hong Kong (FCCHK), 15 May 2009

(Introduction)

Expressing his pleasure to be in Hong Kong for his first visit after assuming office, PM Abhisit noted that this was his first trip abroad since the disruption of the ASEAN Summit in Pattaya and unrest in Bangkok in April. The reason for his visit was to reaffirm Thailand's commitment as a partner and friend of Hong Kong, given the growing and close relationship, particularly on trade, investment and tourism. At the same time, he wished to share his perspective on what was happening in Thailand, knowing that most of the correspondents had been following developments in Thailand not just over the last 3-4 months but the last 2-3 years.

PM Abhisit talked about what he had been trying to do over the last four and a half months and what he hoped to achieve in the coming months. He noted that the twin challenges his Government faced were to lead the Thai economy out of one of the worst financial and economic crises in recent times and to heal the political divisions and conflicts in the country.

(Politics)

Noting that images of Thailand over the last 2-3 years have been of protests and chaotic scenes at Government House, the airports and on the streets of Bangkok, PM Abhisit reassured the audience that his Government's priority was to achieve true reconciliation. He had said from his first day in office that he would pursue this by making sure that the rule of law and justice prevail, and that the Thai political system continue to be developed and reformed so that all voices could be heard and Thailand would have a political system where there was participation from all sides and all differences could be resolved through democratic and peaceful means.

The Prime Minister further said that during the first three months in office, his Government's approach to these problems was to avoid any kind of conflict or confrontation and try to get to grips with the concerns, complaints and grievances that various groups in the society had, in order to begin the process of reconciliation through reforms and fair and non-discriminatory enforcement of the law. It seemed to have worked for three months, he noted, but in April the Government's opponents decided to resort to violence. What followed was the disruption of the summit in Pattaya and chaotic scenes on the streets of Bangkok. The Government had to declare a state of emergency, using the powers entrusted in a special law - the emergency decree. The Government then swiftly moved to restore order. The operations to restore order lasted about 2-3 days with no losses of life as a direct result.

PM Abhisit pointed out that the operations were not about scoring a political victory or trying to clamp down on the Government's opponents. He insisted that they could continue to exercise their democratic and constitutional rights so long that they did not violate the law, such as by inciting violence, blocking streets, or trying to harm people, particularly people in the Government who had been targeted.

Immediately after the events, the Prime Minister called a special session of Parliament for a general debate, where the opposition, government MPs and senators could air their views on how they thought the country should proceed or even raise questions about the events of April, especially concerning the government operations. After an intensive two-day debate, it was agreed that two parliamentary committees should be set up: one to review the situation and events particularly during the days of unrest, and the other to look for a political solution whereby the political divisions and disagreement could be resolved once and for all. PM Abhisit said that for the last couple of weeks, these two committees had been at work. They would report back to the President of the Parliament very soon so that an inclusive process of political reform could begin and concerns about justice or problems in the political system could be addressed for long-lasting peace and political stability.

(Economy)

PM Abhisit noted that more significant was that, despite the turmoil and political challenges over the last few months, the Government was able to implement its economic recovery and stimulus packages on track and on time. The Government had moved swiftly to pass a mid-year supplementary budget to protect the least fortunate and the poorest in society from the impact of the financial crisis. The comprehensive programme - ranging from price support for farmers to income support for low income earners, as well as protecting the most vulnerable people by providing income support for the elderly and beginning a programme of free basic education for children - was passed with the Parliament's approval. 70-80% of the three billion USD programme had now been disbursed. So the Government was well on the way of completing the first phase of the recovery programme.

The Prime Minister further elaborated on the second and more ambitious stimulus package for which the Government was currently seeking parliamentary approval. This involved 45 billion USD of public investment over the next few years. He underlined that there were clear frameworks on how the money was going to be invested by putting particular emphasis on investment in water distribution; transport, communications and logistics; upgrading health centres and schools; and supporting future economic development by focusing more on the service sector and the creative economy. To finance this, PM Abhisit said, Thailand would need to seek additional borrowing as it was running up against the legal limits in terms of the fiscal deficit, but most of the borrowing would be from domestic sources as there was ample liquidity within the Thai financial system, which remained in good health.

PM Abhisit reiterated that despite the headlines and political troubles in the news, the economic programme was proceeding very well and the Government remained focused on that, recognizing that the economy was the number one concern for the majority of the Thai people. By the end of the year, one would begin to see the implementation of such investment, some of which would be financed through the budget, some through loans and some through public-private partnership. The Prime Minister reaffirmed his Government's continued stance to drive the economy through the private sector and market forces.

(ASEAN)

At the same time, the Prime Minister said that Thailand was also carrying out its commitment as ASEAN chair. In February, the country successfully hosted the 14th ASEAN Summit which saw the new ASEAN Charter put into effect and ASEAN continue on its path toward the vision of an ASEAN community. In October, Thailand would be hosting the 15th ASEAN Summit, Summits with dialogue partners and the East Asia Summit, following up on the many regional and global initiatives to deal with the financial crisis. These include a number of agreements and initiatives from the London Summit of the G20, additional facilities offered by global financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, and also the regional multilateralisation of the Chiang Mai Initiative, an arrangement to reserve pooling, in which Hong Kong has also participated. PM Abhisit also added that apart from all these challenges, ASEAN continued to be proactive. Last week Thailand hosted the ASEAN+3 Health Ministers' Meeting to meet the challenge of the new Influenza A H1N1.

(Conclusion)In conclusion, PM Abhisit noted that behind the pictures in the media and beyond the headlines, Thailand was getting back to business and the Government was very much focused on the economic challenges. At the same time, a national reconciliation process has begun through parliamentary mechanisms, in the hope of achieving peace and stability in the country.

Q&A Session after PM Abhisit's Speech at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Hong Kong (FCCHK) Hong Kong, Friday 15 May 2009

(Monarchy: role in politics and succession)

Q: (IHT - Philip Bowring) In previous Thai crises, His Majesty the King played a rather visible role in bringing people together. On this occasion, nothing has been heard from His Majesty the King for the last many months. Is it reasonable to come to a conclusion therefore that His Majesty is seriously incapacitated' Could you say something about the procedure for the succession when H.M. eventually is no longer with us?

PM: As prime minister in a parliamentary system, I have to report to His Majesty the King regularly. I have presented the most recent report only a week and a bit back. Since then, His Majesty the King has attended some public ceremonies to mark very important occasions for the country. So he is in good health. Obviously, given that I have spent a lot of time reporting to His Majesty, I can tell you that His Majesty is very well aware of all the issues that are pertinent to the country's situation.

Your observation needs to be put in perspective. His Majesty the King's interventions in the past, most notably after 14 October 1973 and in May 1992, were interventions of a humanitarian kind, where there has been violence and conflict up to the point that no other process would be able to stop the violence spreading and causing further losses of lives. They were not political interventions as such. At the moment, we have a situation where certainly the government, and now the opposition and the senators have been invited to provide a political solution, which is what explains why there has not been intervention from His Majesty.

His Majesty has been very clear in a speech given two years ago when there were a lot of conflicts and chaos in the streets that he himself is under the law, under the Constitution, and has no power or right to exercise any power beyond what is given to him according to the Constitution. So at the moment, it is up to us, politicians primarily and the people of Thailand, to resolve our problems. His Majesty remains above politics and will continue to provide inspiration, wisdom and guidance in philosophical terms for the Thai people.

The issue of succession is all in the Constitution. There is a provision that states clearly what happens should there need to be a process of succession, and obviously we have to proceed according to that provision.

Q: (Bloomberg) We are relieved to hear that His Majesty is in good health. In his recent interview with Der Spiegel, M.R. Sukhumbhand Baripatra said that he is now afraid for the first time that Thailand could slip into chaos when His Majesty is no longer around. Nobody lives forever. The King has been on the throne in 60 years, right back to when Truman was in the White House. The investors I have been talking to said they are worried about the succession as they are about the present impasse. You mentioned twin challenges. Isn't the succession actually a greater challenge for Thailand?

PM: If you look at succession issues, there are two things that we should accept. The first is that if there are clear rules for succession. That eliminates a lot of uncertainty around how the succession process will actually evolve or work out. There are clear constitutional provisions, so in that sense, that eliminates some of the uncertainty. The second issue is undebatable. When you have had a leader for more than six decades - and one that has built up so much reverence and respect from the people, there's always going to be anxiety. I don't know of any country or society or even organization - where there has been an inspirational leader who has been there for a long time - that does not have anxiety about succession. But Thailand has to make sure that we are mature enough as a country to deal with changes, economic, political and whatever issues that we need to face. I have no illusion that when it happens, it will be a very difficult time for all of us because we are very much attached to His Majesty. But we have to prove our maturity as a people and as a society and demonstrate to the rest of the world that we can deal with all issues and changes.

(Lese-majeste law)

Q: (Le Monde) Many critics have been quite vocal about the provisions under the lese-majeste and how they have been detrimental to the freedom of the press. In many occasions, some bloggers have been particularly famous for ending up on the wrong side of the lese-majeste but also in many others, including foreign correspondents in some instances.

PM: On lese-majeste law, let me reaffirm my belief. This law has been in place for a long time. It is not even a special law. It is part of our Criminal Code in the section on national security as a mechanism to protect one of our key institutions which is supposed to be above conflict and therefore has no other self-defence mechanism. We do not want members of the monarchy taking people to court and therefore be directly in conflict with people.

The problem with this law is more with its enforcement over the last few years, where the law has often been abused or too liberally interpreted. The cases that are now proceeding are mostly cases initiated before I assumed office. Since I assumed office, what I have done is that I have asked people involved particularly the police and now I have asked the Justice Ministry to come up with standard operating procedures so that people know exactly what the limits of this law are. Generally, expression of opinions, for instance, academic opinions concerning institutions is not something that would violate the law. But accusing or making allegations that are damaging to the institution or members of the institution would violate the law, just as you and I would be taken to court if you were to defame or cause damages to other people's reputations. So what I hope to do is to get these new standard operating procedures in place. And I will confirm to you that in no case have people been prosecuted for their political views. If the things that they do to the monarchy were done to other people, they would also have been taken to court and punished, and probably they would suffer more because they probably would not be given a pardon.

(Politics)

Q: (...) In line of what you have said, what is the colour that you expect in mixing yellow and red? In other words, what concessions or proposals are you willing to make to entice the opposition to come over to your views? And if you are not able to do so, how much longer do you expect to be in office?

PM: If my knowledge is correct, you put red and yellow together; you get orange. Orange is the colour that stands for innovation and that is exactly what we need. We need the innovative thinking from the political circles to get Thailand out of this trap. I know that politicians often defend their own interest. But my determination is that we cannot let the country down further. We need to move beyond our own narrow interest, prepare to be open-minded and discuss all the issues that are of concern to other people, not our own. This is why the parliamentary committee should open up the process for public participation as widely as possible. So I expect that the process might take a few more months and might even involve the possibility of public hearings or even a referendum on some controversial issues. The Government will do what we can to support this process.

How much longer am I expected to last? I do not think it actually depends on the failure of this process. Maybe the success of this process might lead to the constitutional amendment and also a good time for me to call new elections. I have said that I would decide to call elections when I feel it is best for the country. I think for the country, there are three things that need be done before elections should be called.

First, we need a cooling-off period. We do not want to go into election with feelings high and real risk of having violent election campaigns. That's the last thing we need for Thai democracy.

Second, we need to have a good package in place so we are prepared to deal with the worst of the financial crisis. It makes no sense to have disruptions in the programme to deal with the financial crisis as it will only hurt our people.

Third, as Chair of ASEAN, we should carry out our commitment the best we can and have to chair until the end of the year. I cannot really tell you when the elections would be held, but if you say if I failed my task, my country and my people, I have no doubt in my own mind, the country's interest has to come before my own. I am not interested in how long I stay. I am interested in what I do while I stay which is to achieve reconciliation and recovery for my country and people.

Q: (AP) How can Thailand assure the safety of future international meetings given the government's failure in the past?

There are many who believe that Thailand, to show the commitment to the rule of law, needs to put some of the yellow shirts on trial because it has not happened yet. Do you foresee the time when this will happen soon or not?

PM: - For the first question, we successfully hosted the ASEAN+3 Health Ministers' Meeting last week, I think that is clear that we are ready and we can host meetings of that kind.

- As far as the enforcement of law is concerned, particularly in the cases against the PAD, all cases are proceeding. I should point out that when I assumed the office, a lot of the cases that were pending against PAD were already almost about half a year old, and no actions had been taken. When I assumed office, one of the first things that I asked the police to do was to get the easy ones done like instances of violence that took place during the protests, and subsequently, arrest warrants were issued. Then there was a case of the occupation of Government House. They have clearly made progress with that so there were summonses and warrants issued and the case is now proceeding. The big high profile case that remains is the one that concerns the airport occupation. I have asked them to speed the investigation on that. They say they are now over 90% done so I expect some results very soon.

Q: (TVB) Can you really be confident to reassure travellers to Thailand that there is not going to be future state of emergency or airport closure taking place?

PM: What I can reassure you is that even during those very difficult times and chaotic events, in no case were foreigners targets. The implementation of the law - as far as I am concerned - will be done with the utmost care. We will ensure that we swiftly restore order with minimal, and if possible, no losses at all. The operations during Songkran resulted in no losses of life as a direct action of the Government.

We are always on alert. We want to make sure that order is preserved. Our mistake during April was we exercised what some people called undue restraint because we thought that if the Government exercises utmost restraint, the other side would not escalate violence. Now that we know there are a small group of people who might resort to violent actions, we are much more alert as to their movements. We will make sure that all the political movements now are the exercise of constitutional rights - freedom of expression - and not abusing those rights to become cases of inciting violence or leading people to take illegal actions such as blocking roads or trespassing onto government or other properties.

(Constitution)

Q: (IHT) The 1997 constitution was drawn up with very heavy support from the Democrat Party. It is generally believed to be an excellent constitution and it was overthrown by a military coup. Would not the return to the1997Constitution be one way of reconciling the opposing parties?

PM: You are right in saying that Democrats Party and myself in particular were the first group of people to endorse and support the 1997 Constitution. And I do believe it is a good document. The problem is you have also to look back about 3 years ago when after the constitution had been in effect for about 7-8 years, there was widespread abuse and loopholes that were exploited by people with power. All political parties back in 2006 had agreed that it was time to amend the 1997 Constitution in a major way. In that sense the task should not be just getting the 1997 Constitution back but learning lessons from how it was abused and how loopholes were discovered and make sure that those loopholes are no longer there, and that we improve upon the 1997 document. It would not make sense to put back something that has proved not to work and actually at one point produced a consensus that it has not work, and hope that this time around somehow it would work.

(Neutrality of Human Rights Commission)

Q: (Le Monde) Regarding the National Commission for Human Rights which has been recently reappointed, many critics have been quite dismayed by the fact that hardly anyone in the Commission has a background in human rights. Many are former members of the police force. And in one case, in relation to [Myanmar], there is one specific member, Mr. Parinya, who has previously said that western criticism of [Myanmar] amounts to foreign interference in internal affairs. So, the Commission does not seem to be up to the standard to bring about reconciliation.

PM: This is a commission that we first had when we had the 1997 Constitution, and subsequently the current Constitution continues with this body. The essential thing is that this Commission is separate from the executive branch, which is the Government. The process of selection is in the Constitution and the law, whereby people can apply and there will be a selection committee and then the senate will vote on the nominations. The new Commission has come about according to those procedures, so whether those procedures are up to the standard that you and I see is a different issue because that is what the law specifies as the process of appointing the Human Rights Commission. I would hope to see that the Human Rights Commission would follow the example set by the previous Commission which has been proactive and active on many issues and retained their independence. If my Government or I myself were to interfere or intervene with the process, that would defeat the purpose of having this Commission being an independent commission. If anybody has issues whether the appointment of the Commission is not going according with the Constitution or the law, they can refer that to the Constitutional Court but they have to specify clearly how the process so far has violated these procedures.

(Thaksin-related)

Q: (Far Eastern Economic Review - Colum Murphy) Does Mr. Thaksin play a part in the vision that you have on the reconciliation in Thailand. Will the banned politicians from Thai Rak Thai be allowed to reenter the political domain and play roles in the future?

PM: The opposition party which has ties to the former prime minister is involved in this process. So, all the political parties and groups in Thailand are being represented. Reconciliation is about public issues, not about personal issues. We will do whatever is appropriate and right as far as the democratic system is concerned. If that does include, for instance, possible amnesty for the banned politicians, then so be it. But currently, we have not reached that conclusion yet. There are proposals and counter-proposals as to what the appropriate changes should be made to the Constitution, and we will proceed accordingly.

I would reiterate my firm stance that to achieve real reconciliation, personal issues and interests must be put aside. We are here to design a better system that is fair for everybody.

For Mr. Thaksin as an individual, he will be treated as any other Thai would be treated. He has been convicted; he has violated the law; he must accept responsibility. We are talking about amnesty for political violations. Those are being discussed. But I have said clearly that we are not interested in granting amnesty for criminal offences.

Q: (...) Thaksin, the former Prime Minister of Thailand, was very active in Hong Kong. Before you made the decision to come to Hong Kong, did you have any consideration about this? Have you given any pressures to the Government of Hong Kong and the Government of China not to let Thaksin to come to Hong Kong again?

PM: My decisions are based on the interests of over 60 million people in Thailand. That's what guides my decisions. He was not part of any consideration as to when and where I make my trips. As for Hong Kong, and China for Hong Kong, we are actually working on the extradition treaty, and I think we are making progress.

Q: (AFP) You mentioned about the Extradition agreement with Hong Kong and perhaps Beijing. When do you think the agreement will be reached? Supposed that he were watching you speaking here at FCC, what would you say to Thaksin?

PM: I would say he can expect justice in Thailand and he must accept the consequences of his actions because he is a Thai and he cannot have privileges and rights that are above any other Thais. We do not discriminate against him but we cannot discriminate for him.

As for the extradition treaties, the Ministry, the parties concerned are working on it. I am not sure how long the timeframe is but in my discussion with the Chief Executive he mentioned it himself that he is working on it and hopes to see a quick conclusion.

(Economy)

Q: (NY Times) How long do you think it might take for exports to begin to recover? And when they do, do you foresee ASEAN countries rebuilding their reserves with the same heavy reliance on dollars? Or will they consider other currencies including the renminbi?

PM: A lot would depend obviously on how quickly our key trading partners recover. The frustrating thing about dealing with this crisis from the point of view of a lot of Asian economies is that the problem has been caused by the drop in demand from countries that are our trading partners. So we hope to see major economies that are suffering now in the US, Europe or Japan - when their economies pick up that will be when most of the regional economies' exports will also pick up. And in fact even during these times, the one thing you might notice is that the drop in exports for most Asian countries is actually less that the drop in imports. So we actually continue to build surpluses and reserves.

The issue of exactly in which currency these reserves are held is separate. And there have been no clear signs of any change which means the dollar continues to dominate. I think for other currencies to replace the dollar or maybe even complement the dollar will also have to meet two major requirements. One is the willingness of the various countries to hold such currency, which is related to the second issue that that currency would almost automatically have to be freely traded. So these are the challenges for currencies that might either replace or complement the dollar as major foreign reserves.

Q: (ASEAN Magazine) There has been a lot of discussion about approaching development on a balanced approach, i.e. not relying too much on the export sectors. Do you subscribe this view, and what steps are you taking to strengthen domestic consumption?

PM: It is important to have, one, a strong domestic economy. Thailand has a fairly decent size domestic economy but it can be enhanced, so a number of sectors, particularly the agriculture sector, should be beefed up. Secondly, I don't think people should shun opportunities to trade. So if there are opportunities there for export, import, trade investment, they should take them with the understanding that there are risks. The job of the Government is to protect the people from the risks of having their lives absolutely ruined by the volatility of the global economy. To me, the action we now take is to strengthen domestic economy, plus strengthening our social safety net and welfare system, so people are better protected. I would not recommend people turning their backs on the opportunities that come from abroad.

(ASEAN)

Q: (...) Thailand has always been very sensitive to the shift of power balance in the region. Some people say that is the reason why it is the only country in the region that has never been a colony. Recently, what we see now is that China is having a military build up on the one side and on the other side the US influence in the region is declining a little bit. Especially to this question is with respect to the South China Sea. Where is Thailand situating itself?

PM: [Part] of the charm and the untold success of ASEAN is that the Association was formed precisely to strike a right balance among the major powers in the world, which is why Thailand has been very active in supporting the role of ASEAN in providing a stabilizing factor as far as security is concerned, given the shifting in the balance of power between the major players of the world. ASEAN has the ARF. ASEAN now reaches out so we now have the Plus 3 and the EAS. There are even talks and proposals of other and similar fora so that everybody can be involved, so we can build trust and confidence rather than seeing the emergence of powers as something of a threat.

Q: (Financial Times) You mentioned your Government's economic programmes. Your Government was quoted this week that the planned, rescheduled East Asian Summit will not be happening next month, and it might not happen until October. Amidst what may be the greatest economic crisis that the region has ever faced, is it not some sort of marked failure for the region as a whole that it could be a year of passing by without being able to convene the leaders together to work on the common programme or effort to fight this?

PM: I want to put things in perspective. We were supposed to have had the 14th Summit and also the East Asia Summit back in December last year. It was moved from Bangkok to Chiangmai and was subsequently cancelled. Then there was a change of government. I came in. My determination was to get things back on track, but the logistical issue of finding a convenient time for 16 leaders have proved very difficult. When we went ahead with the Cha-am Hua Hin 14th Summit - or what is seen as the first half of it - without waiting for the EAS, it was because we could not find a time convenient for all 16 leaders and we did not want to wait. So we went ahead with that.

We then found a narrow window in April, where India was not able to attend because of the elections in the country. But we decided that we had to go ahead. It was unfortunate that the disruptions took place in Pattaya following the protest but I have to put safety of other leaders before everything else

So we tried to find a time between April and October. Because we felt it would be good to have it as soon as possible, we looked for June. We knew it was difficult, and in the end what happened was that the Korean president had engagements in the US, Brunei also could not reschedule a foreign trip and New Zealand, India and Indonesia have engagements concerning internal elections. So we could not go ahead in June.

In July we have the Foreign Ministers' Meeting, the Post Ministerial Conferences, the ARF and the Economic Ministers' Meeting as well, so the whole of July is full of ASEAN and ASEAN and dialogue partners' activities anyway. And by the time we move to August, questions are being raised that do we want two East Asian Summits within the space of two months. So what we are now doing is that we ask the senior officials of the EAS, or the ASEAN+6, who will continue to meet next week in Phuket, and they will recommend to the leaders on how we should proceed. But the likelihood is that we would then move to October for the 15th ASEAN Summit and Related Summits.

I would say that in the meantime, it does not mean we do nothing. Just as we have proceeded and now succeeded in getting the Chiang Mai Initiative expansion to multilateralization agreed upon, there could be statements issued by ASEAN and ASEAN+3 and ASEAN+6 on other related issues. And I think a number of initiatives in the minds of China, Japan, Korea - they might announce such initiatives at other international forums. So cooperation continues. For problems concerning logistics, we had to postpone the meeting.

(Influenza A H1N1)

Q: (TVB) We had a hotel closed here for a week because of the swine flu, and it has just reopened today. Would you be confident to book a room and spend a night in this hotel? What do you think about how Hong Kong is dealing with swine flu?

PM: Yes, but unfortunately I have to go back.

Q: (RDHK) The world is really concerned on the outbreak of swine flu. As you have repeatedly said you are trying to boost Thailand's economy, what will be the impact of swine flu to Thai economy and are you concerned?

PM: We are as concerned as everybody and we have had two cases reported and confirmed: they were people who travelled back from Mexico. But they are now cured, healthy, sent back, and there are no reports of any contagions while they are in Thailand. We have measures still in place, in terms of thermo-scans, screening, monitoring the movement of people who travel from countries where there is an outbreak and we will continue to take appropriate actions against those suspect cases. It is still too early to conclude one way or another about how serious this is going to be. What we will watch is how quickly the numbers in Mexico and the US stabilise. If those numbers become stable, at least it is an encouraging sign as to what kind of limits the problem will actually reach. If it is contained to the current level, we think that it would have some effect but it is at a level where WHO is not recommending any kind of travel restrictions so the impact would be more limited. The worst case scenario would be if the situation got worse to a point where travel restrictions were being officially sanctioned or imposed by the authorities.

(Thai-Cambodia border dispute)

Q: (Voice of America) What is the current status of talks with Cambodia with regards to the border dispute?

PM: I have met with Prime Minister Hun Sen twice and a number of ministers who have direct responsibilities several times. We agreed that this is the issue that should be resolved according to the Memorandum of Understanding that was signed back in the year 2000, which means we have a joint boundary commission that works on this. The commission continues to meet. It is really a technical problem that needs to be sorted out, and we will leave it at that. PM Hun Sen and I are in complete agreement that we will not allow this issue to distract us from the various issues of cooperation that we could continue to pursue on a number of fronts, whether economic, cultural, or political. So at the moment, the issue is referred to the JBC according to the MOU that we signed. It is unfortunate that every now and then clashes do happen. It is something that is not unexpected. PM Hun Sen and I had very frank talks on that. These things happen when we have a common border and disputes over where the border is. But as I say, we leave it as a technical issue; we have a framework and mechanism to resolve it; and we will not let that dominate the relationship between the two countries.

(Myanmar)

Q: (IHT - Mark McDonald) As the holder of the ASEAN Chair, is it not time for you personally, as a Prime Minister of Thailand, and ASEAN overall to speak out against the rather alarming treatment of Aung San Suu Kyi in [Myanmar]? And barring any comment, is it acquiescence by silence on the part of ASEAN?

PM: Yesterday, I already expressed my concerns about what has been happening in Myanmar because at the last ASEAN leaders' meeting, Myanmar briefed us on her plans to achieve the roadmap and we had clearly issued the statement, chairman's statement - and also in our discussions - on the desire to see an inclusive political process that would be accepted by the international community and we have encouraged Myanmar to work with the United Nations because we have expected the United Nations, maybe the Secretary General, to pay a visit and try to resolve the issues.

Obviously, what has been happening over the last couple of days or a little longer is of real concern. The Foreign Ministry, since Thailand is the Chair, is now seeking the views of all the other ASEAN members.

Q: (Reuters) You mentioned that the situation of Aung Sang Suu Kyi is of real concern to yourself and ASEAN. Could you elaborate on that - your concern about manner of her detention, her health being denied of a doctor in the past. What time frame do you think you will be able to get a collective answer from the members on this?

PM: Clearly her health situation is of concern, and that should be a concern to everybody. The second thing is the bigger picture of what this means as far as the implementation of the roadmap. And I have already said ASEAN has expressed our desire to see what we called an inclusive process that would be key to the acceptability of the political process. So clearly the events raised these concerns, health concerns and concerns as to what this means for the future of the implementation of the roadmap.

The Foreign Ministry is asking for views of other ASEAN countries, and it went out yesterday, and because I'm here today I cannot tell you how quick the response we can expect, but I will certainly follow up on that with my Foreign Minister when I get back.

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Intercham's Seminar "China's Stimulus Package - The Role of China in Revitalizing the Global Economy"
(5 May 2009)

Presentation by Professor Priscilla Lau, Associate Professor, Polytechnic University of Hong Kong and member of the National People's Congress in Beijing since 1998. She gave us information about the details of China's stimulus package and its impact. She explained the policy on investment to the US Government, EU Government and IMF bonds.
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Asia Society's Luncheon "In Conversation with Francis Yeoh"
(25 March 2009)

Tan Sri Dr. Francis Yeoh is one of the most respected and influential business leaders in Malaysia. He is Chairman and Managing Director of one of the largest Malaysian conglomerates, YTL Corporation Berhad. With 10 million customers in three continents, its core businesses include construction, cement, hotels and power generation. It is one of the largest companies listed on the Malaysian stock exchange, and together with its six listed entities, has a combined market capitalization of over US$7 billion. He shared with us his views on how South East Asian countries will fare in the midst of the global recession and what companies can do to turn this crisis into opportunity.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon: 2009 - 2010 Budget with Financial Secretary The Honourable John Tsang
(9 March 2009)

The Financial Secretary, the Honourable John Tsang, delivered the 2009 - 2010 Budget speech at the Legislative Council on Wednesday, February 25. 2009. It was an excellent opportunity for us to further understand how principles like "Big Market Small Government" and "from welfare to self-up", etc could be adhered and sustained through the 2009 - 2010 Budget Policy during the luncheon.

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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "Cost Effective Management of Litigation/Arbitration in the Current Economic Crisis"
(26 February 2009)

Complex Contentious litigation can be a very expensive exercise putting a strain on the budget of any organization especially in the current financial turmoil. Often the cost of litigation may spin out of control and may force parties to examine their legal strategy as to whether to press on or to resolve their dispute. During these difficult times of the credit crunch when cost cutting is becoming a necessity, it would be useful to look at ways in which legal costs in contentious dispute resolution could be controlled or minimized and to examine changing trends in litigation financing which may impact on your access to justice.

The seminar had covered topics such as tips on reducing the cost of your external legal advisers; the use of cost projections in your litigation strategy; alternative fee arrangements with a view to control legal cost; third party financing of litigation or arbitration; and litigation insurance as a means of financing dispute resolution.

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The 39th InterCham Young Professionals Valentine's Cocktail
(12 February 2009)

Another fabulous networking event co-organized by the Belgium-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce, Norwegian Chamber of Commerce and Danish Chamber of Commerce. The event provided an excellent opportunity to mingle and meet with hundreds of members from 27 international business organizations in Hong Kong. All proceeds from the event were donated to Street Sleepers' Shelter Society Trustees Inc.
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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "Update: Macau with Paulo Azevedo of Macau Business"
(5 February 2009)

Not so long ago Macau was being hyped as the centre of the universe. Business has gone from feast to famine in a short period of time! Or almost! How much of this has to do with the current credit crunch and visa scheme restrictions - what is really hurting the gaming enclave? And when will the construction boom restart?

Guest speaker Mr. Paulo Azevedo, Executive Director of Macau Business, shared a luncheon talk with us on the latest events and their possible impact on the economy and political near-future of Macau.

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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "Cleaner Production Partnership Programme"
(3 February 2009)

Guest speaker Mr. K L Tsang, General Manager of Environmental Management Division of the Hong Kong Productivity Council gave us an overall view of the operation of the Hong Kong owned factories in PRD and its potential impact on environment. A brief introduction of the Government initiative outlined in 2007 Policy Address on assisting the Hong Kong owned factories in PRD to adopt cleaner production for better environmental performance was presented. Particular focus was placed on how overseas technology suppliers and service providers can participate in the Cleaner Production Partnership Programme.
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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "Taiwan Straits Exchange & Cooperation, Now and Beyond"
(18 December 2008)

2008 marks the 30th anniversary of China's reform and open door policy, the 20th anniversary of Taiwan Straits exchange & cooperation movement and the resumption of official meeting of Taiwan's Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) and China's association of Relationships Across Taiwan Straits (ARATS). ARATS's Chairman, Mr. Chen Yun-lin's historical and most unforgettable visit (according to his own words) to Taiwan just came to a surprising conclusion. So what's next? Guest speaker Mr. Alexander Pan, Chairman of Asia Pacific Taiwan Federation of Industry & Commerce & CEO of Union Asia Pacific Group shared a talk with us.
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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "What Price Property in Hong Kong - Weathering the Storm"

Guest speaker Mr. Nicholas Brooke is the Chairman of Professional Property Services, a specialist real estate consultancy based in Hong Kong, providing advisory services across the AP Region including Mainland China.
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The 38th InterCham Young Professionals Cocktail
(12 November 2008)

Another fabulous networking event co-organized by the French, Italian and Swedish Chambers of Commerce in Hong Kong. The event provided an excellent opportunity to mingle and meet with hundreds of members from 27 international business organizations in Hong Kong. All proceeds were donated to the HKU-Pasteur Research Centre (HKU-PRC), a charitable organization created by The University of Hong Kong and Institute Pasteur to fight infectious diseases in Hong Kong, China and the larger Asia Region.
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HKTBC Annual General Meeting 2008
(24 September 2008)

About 30 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting. Our Chairman, Mr. Bernard Chan, summarized the past activities of the Council and stressed that the mission in 2009 and beyond was again, to expand the number and range of activities.

Mr. Horst Geicke, Mr. Kenneth Gaw, Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval and Mr. William Chao were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's Honorary Auditors.The current Board of Directors consists of 10 directors:

1) The Hon Bernard Chan, President of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr. William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr. Tom V. Chatjaval, Founder and Chairman & CEO of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr. Kenneth Gaw, President & Managing Principal of Gaw Capital

5) Mr. Horst Geicke, Chairman and Co-Founder of Pacific Alliance Group, VinaCapital Group

6) M. Clayton Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr. Harry Lee, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr. Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs. Katherine Ngan, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr. Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

We were honored to have a special guest joining us at the luncheon right after our AGM, Mr. Thanong Khanthong, Editor of The Nation, Bangkok - Thailand's leading English-language newspaper and one of the most respected newspapers in Asia. Mr. Khanthong was previously the paper's Managing Editor and Business Editor and is renowned for his incisive analysis into the Thai political and economic scene.

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The 37th InterCham Young Professionals Cocktail
(6 August 2008)

Splash into summertime and mingle with hundreds of young professionals from 27 international business organizations in Hong Kong! Proceeds of the cocktail were donated to The Home of Loving Faithfulness, a charitable organization for children and adults with disabilities.
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Joint Chamber Luncheon Event "Managing Business in China"
(5 June 2008)

Guest speaker Dr. Han J Roth, Consul General of Switzerland in Hong Kong, has a long Chinese experience that he gathered over the past 30 years. He studied Mandarin and socialist economic theory in the late 70s right after the initial opening up of China. After entering into the Foreign Ministry, Dr. Roth's China experience was enriched with postings as Deputy Head of Mission at the Swiss Embassy in Beijing from 1990 to 1995 and as Consul General of Switzerland in Shanghai from 2001-2006. Dr. Roth concentrates essentially on intercultural questions in business and management and has just published two books, "Managing China" and "Leitfaden China".
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Thailand Elite Investment Network Gala Dinner
(28 April 2008)

Thailand Privilege Card Co Ltd organized a gala dinner event "Thailand Investment Networking Opportunity" at Four Seasons Hotel in Hong Kong to introduce and promote investment in Thailand. The purpose was to create an understanding among Chinese businessmen in Hong Kong through Thailand economic climate as well as establish various connections with the prestigious group in each specific industry. It was an honour to have Dr. Allan Zeman, GBS, JP, Chairman of LKF Holdings Ltd as the special guest speaker in this event.
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Joint Chambers' Breakfast Event "10th NPC & CPPCC: Prospects for Economic and Political reforms, Where is China's Economy Heading?"
(1 April 2008)

Following the conclusion of the 10th National People's Congress & Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference held recently, the Honourable Jeffrey Lam, SBS, JP, Legislative Council Representative, Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce Managing Director and Forward Winsome Industries Ltd, analyzed the recent Chinese initiatives on substantial economic development and, in the face of the sub-prime crisis in the US, how well China was able to withstand its impact and where China's economy was heading and by what means. Dr. Willy Lam, Adjunct Professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the University of Hong Kong and Akita International University in Japan, assessed the prospects for economic and political reform, the political significance of the Olympics and the 30th anniversary of Deng Xiaoping's reform crusade.
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Joint Business Community Luncheon "2008-2009 Budget"
(10 March 2008)

The Financial Secretary, the Honourable John Tsang delivered a talk to the Hong Kong business community about 2008-2009 Budget.
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Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "China's Fast Growth and Its Impact on World Economy"
(18 February 2008)

Joint Chambers' Luncheon Event "China's Fast Growth and Its Impact on World Economy"
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Joint Chambers' Breakfast Presentation "European Monetary Union and Monetary"
(11 February 2008)

Approaching the 10th Birthday of the euro a stock-taking of the economic outcomes clearly points to a remarkable achievement of the price stability, thereby clearly defying the early skeptics of European Monetary Union and proving the high degree of credibility of the common monetary policy. However, price stability is a common good that has to be safeguarded in a constantly changing economic and financial environment. Thus, past successes are by no means a reason for complacency. This is especially true, given the current challenges for economic and price stability due to financial market tensions and energy and food price increases. In his talk, guest speaker Prof. Dr. Axel A Weber, President of the Deutsche Bundesbank, analyzed the experiences with the common European currency as well as the current challenges.
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Luncheon with Mr Pana Janviroj
(7 February 2007)

Since the change of government in Thailand last September, a number of events have raised uncertainty among the overseas business community about the direction of future economic policy and the economy in general. We were honoured to have Mr Pana Janviroj, President of The Nation Group (Thailand's biggest listed multimedia group) to share his thoughts on the situation.
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Luncheon with Mr Virapan Pulges
(6 November 2006)

With the strategic location, developed infrastructure, abundant of labour forces, well educated engineers and middle managements, incentives from Thai government and strong domestic consumptions, many Multi-national corporations and their supporting partners, especially Japanese and Singaporean companies, have chosen Thailand as their manufacturing base to export their products for ASEAN, Middle East, European Union and Japanese markets. We were proud to have Mr Virapan Pulges, Managing Director of TICON Industrial Connection Public Co Ltd to share his insights on "Thailand as the manufacturing base and Logistic Hub" on 6 November 2006.

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2006 Annual General Meeting
(15 September 2006)

About 30 members attended the Council's Annual General Meeting on 15 September 2006. Our Chairman, Mr Bernard Chan, summarized the past activities of the council and stressed that the mission in 2006 and beyond is to expand the number and range of activities.

During the meeting, Mr Clayton Hebbard, Dr Harry Lee and Mrs Katherine Ngan were re-elected as Directors for the ensuing year. Simultaneously, Ernst & Young was re-appointed the Council's honorary auditors.

The current Board of Directors consists of 10 directors:

1) The Hon Bernard Chan, Executive Director & Deputy Managing Director of Asia Financial Group

2) Mr William Chao, Managing Director of Wing Wah Limited

3) Mr Tom V. Chatjaval, Managing Director of TVC Management Ltd

4) Mr Kenneth Gaw, Managing Director of Pioneer Global Group Limited

5) Mr Horst Geicke, Chairman of Pacific Alliance Group Ltd

6) Mr Clayton Hebbard, Consultant of Grant Thornton

7) Dr Harry Lee, Managing Director of TAL Apparel Limited

8) Mr Willy Lin, Managing Director of Milo's Knitwear (International) Ltd

9) Mrs Katherine Ngan, Executive Director of May Cheong Toy Products Fty Ltd

10) Mr Raphael Tong, Managing Director of Shanghai Mister Softee Food Products Co Limited

(In alphabetical order)

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Luncheon with Mr Kasemsit Pathomsak
(15 September 2006)

Mr Kasemsit Pathomsak, the President & Chief Executive of Merchant Partners Securities Ltd, gave us a talk at the luncheon immediately after the Council's 2006 Annual General Meeting on 15 September. Mr Pathomsak impressed our members and guests with a presentation on "The Current Thai Political Situation and its Effect on Stock Exchange of Thailand Investors". He presented an in-depth analysis on the macro & micro atmosphere in Thailand and also discussed the likely future trends of the economic situations in Thailand. The attendants found the presentation interesting and useful.

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The Third Annual Co-operation Meeting
(26 October 2005)

The 3rd Annual Co-operation meeting between directors of Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council and Thailand-Hong Kong Business Council had been held on 26 October. We also have the pleasure that Mr Arthur Ho, Head of Hong Kong Guangdong Cooperation Coordinatino Unit, Mr Alan Wong, Deputy Executive Director of Hong Kong Trade Development Council and Mrs Srimaitreephit & Ms Palawongse from the Royal Thai Consulate General joined us.

During the meeting, both parties expressed opinions and exchanged views on various issues. It was a very nice meeting and it is hoped that similar kind of gathering should be kept on in future so that various opinions and views can be exchanged frequently to help develop business and commercial ties between Hong Kong and Thailand.

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"Discover the Hong Kong Magic" - Tourism Promotion in Bangkok
(9 May 2005)

Our Chairman, Mr Bernard Chan, joined as the Honourable guest of the Hong Kong Delegation to promote Hong Kong Tourism in Thailand on 9 May 2005. The delegation was headed by the Financial Secretary, The Hon. Henry Tang, with 16 delegates including Government officials, leaders of the tourism industry and operators of new attractions.

More than 250 representatives from the Thailand tourism organizations and travel trade attended the luncheon presentation which provided a golden opportunity for the delegation to network with their counterparts in Bangkok and to brief the Thai media of the strength of Hong Kong's tourism.

Please click here to view the Speech by the Financial Secretary.

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Luncheon on "Understanding Thailand's Foreign Real Estate Ownership Laws and Regulations"
(20 April 2005)

Ms Cynthia Pornavalai, Attorney at Law, was invited as the keynote speaker at the Council's roundtable luncheon on 20 April. She shared her experiences with members and guests on handling commercial transactions and quoted several specific examples of how foreign real estate ownership transactions were structured in Thailand. She also gave strategic advices on how foreigners should do today to ensure security of tenure and financing on real estate purchases in Thailand.

Our Council director, Mr Clayton Hebbard, founding partner of Grant Thornton Thailand, also highlighted some of the problems faced by foreign real estate purchasers in Thailand. The luncheon provided a good platform for audiences to thoroughly understand the Thailand's land-ownership rules and regulations.

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Luncheon with the President of the Government Housing Bank
(26 Jan 2005)

Mr Khan Prachuabmoh, the President of the Government Housing Bank of Thailand, spoke at the HKTBC roundtable luncheon at the Hong Kong Club on 26 January to share his views on ost-Tsunami Real Estate Investment and Financing Opportunities in Thailand.

Mr Prachuabmoh said "As the exports grew by 24 per cent in 2004 together with the Thai GDP is expected to grow at 6 percent in 2005, I expect that the real estates investment opportunities is brilliant in the coming years." He also concluded that the Government clearly intends to rebuild damaged tourist areas, the infrastructure as well as to reconstruct the hotels and tourist resorts.

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Breakfast meeting on the development of Thailand Tourism Industry
(19 Nov 2004)

Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council hosted a breakfast meeting at the Hong Kong Club on 19 November. At the meeting, attended by Council Chairman and Directors, the Chairman of the Hong Kong Tourism Board Mrs Selina Chow and the Commissioner of Tourism Commission Ms Eva Chen, the latest trend of Tourism Industry in Thailand were discussed.

Mr Chanin Donavanik, the President of the Thai Hotels Associations, spoke at the breakfast meeting explained the marketing plans in Thailand. During the meeting, attendees discussed ways to further strengthen hotel industries between Hong Kong and Thailand. They also exchanged views on various ways that could help to develop mutual business.

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HKTBC Delegation to Bangkok to promote CEPA
(26 August 2004)

We were honoured to form a delegation with the Secretary for Industry and Techonlogy, Mr John Tsang at the gala dinner organized by the Thailand-Hong Kong Business Council in the Ballroom of the Sheraton Grand Sukhumvit Hotel, Bangkok on 26 August 2004. The delegation consisted of 9 directors and members, with the aim of promoting the benefits of CEPA to the Thai business community.

Mr Tsang told the audience during the dinner that, "Hong Kong products covered by 374 Mainland tariff codes can now enjoy zero tariffs when exported to the Mainland. CEPA also gives Hong Kong companies greater access to the Mainland in 18 services sectors, including banking, distribution and telecommunications. CEPA offers tremendous opportunities for Thai and other overseas companies to enter the Mainland market by setting up in Hong Kong, partnering with Hong Kong companies, or even acquiring a company in Hong Kong."

He also emphasized that by partnering with Hong Kong businesses and drawing on their decades of experiences in the Mainland, overseas companies can gain a fast track into that burgeoning market. Mr Tsang concluded by saying that "The best way to enter the Mainland market is to set up manufacturing operations in the PRD while running management, finance and distribution out of Hong Kong. It is a business model that combines the low costs and efficiency of the Pearl River Delta with Hong Kong's sophisticated business infrastructure."

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The Hon. Bernard Chan was conferred the Commander (Third class) of the Most Noble Order of the Crown of Thailand
(18 June 2004)

Our Chairman, The Honourable Bernard Charnwut Chan, JP, was awarded the Commander (Third Class) of the Most Noble Order of the Crown of Thailand on 18 June 2004 for his distinguished and outstanding contribution to the promotion and development of business between Thailand and Hong Kong.

The ceremony was held in the Royal Thai Consulate-General with more than 20 guests, including Ms Denise Yu, Permanent Secretary for Commerce and Industry, Mr Kelvin Ho, Director-General of Trade and Industry and Dr Eden Woo, CEO of the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce etc, to witness the conferment.

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East meets West in DTAC
(11 Feb 2004)

Being the second largest Thailand mobile phone operator with more than 6.5 million subscribers, DTAC is a very successful joint venture between Norway and Thailand. Mr Sigve Brekke and Mr Vichai Bencharongkul, the co-CEOs of DTAC, addressed their winning strategies at the Council's February 11 roundtable lunch at the Hong Kong Club.

"They must know how to evaluate the environment, know who our competitors are and more importantly, know how to use the company's strengths and advantages," Brekke said. The other CEO, Sigve added "a company should develop a culture that can react quickly and effectively to change". The co-CEO's shared their valuable insight on their philosophy of "East meets West" for investors with an interest in overseas joint ventures.

All the audiences were very impressed and enlightened by the co-CEO's analysis on managing and operating a successful Thai-foreign joint ventrure.

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Hong Kong's Capital Investment Entrant Scheme to be Implemented in October
(2 Oct 2003)

The Hong Kong SAR Government (September 30, 2003) announced that the Capital Investment Entrant Scheme will start receiving applications on October 27, 2003.

The Capital Invesment Entrant Scheme aims to attract capital investment entrants to come to Hong Kong. Persons with net assets under their control and disposal for investment of no less than HK$6.5 million in permissible investment assets will be eligible for admission into Hong Kong as capital investment entrants.

For more information, please visit http://www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/200309/30/0930230.htm. Interested parties may visit the website of the Immigration Department at http://www.immd.gov.hk in mid October to download the application forms and relevant information.

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HKTBC Facilitates English Schools JV in Thailand
(June 2003)

The Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council has been instrumental in bringing together the partners for a joint venture that will bring English language educational programs to business professionals in Thailand.

The two partners are Canada-based Pacific Education Group, whose managing director is HKTBC-member Andrew Chan, and Kluaynamthai Hospital Group, whose managing director is Sranyoo Chanate.

The JV will initially deliver specially developed English programs to nurses and health care staff at Kluaynamthai Hospital's training school. The curriculum will also be marketed to other local hospitals, and the JV plans to develop a similar program aimed at banking and insurance industry professionals.

Bernard Chan, Chairman of the HKTBC, said the Council was pleased to have been able to play a part in bringing the two partnerships together, and he looked forward to seeing more Council members and other parties find new opportunities through cooperation and partnership.

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Prime Minister Thaksin's Speech at CLSA
(21 May 2003)

On 21 May 2003, His Excellency Thaksin Shinawatra, Prime Minister of Thailand, was invited to give a speech about the lastest developments in Thailand at CLSA virtual forum broadcasted simultaneously in New York, London, Singapore and Hong Kong. (Click here for the speech)
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Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council As the IBC Member
(April 2003)

The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Donald Tsang, has agreed to admit the Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council ("HKTBC") as a Member of his International Business Committee ("IBC") on April 2003. It is indeed a recognition for HKTBC as one of the major business associations in Hong Kong.

The International Business Committee, meets quarterly, was established in late 1989 with the terms of reference of providing a sounding board and forum for discussion for international business representatives with the Government on matters affecting international perceptions of the business environment in Hong Kong. Current membership includes the Chief Secretary as the Chairman, 27 representatives from foreign chambers of commerce and HKTDC, one ad personam appointment of the Hon Martin Barrow, Secretary for Commerce, Industry & Technology, Director-General of Investment Promotion, Director of Information Services, Deputy Director of Information Services and Assistant Director of Information Services.

The HKTBC shall provide updates in our website or via e-mail, on the issues discussed by IBC.

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Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council Launched
(25 Sept 2002)

A private-sector organization to encourage closer ties and new partnerships between businesses in Hong Kong and Thailand was launched at a special inauguration dinner held in Hong Kong on 25 Sept 2002.

The body, the Hong Kong-Thailand Business Council, has Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra of Thailand and the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR, Tung Chee-hwa as its patrons. The first Chairman of the Council is Mr Bernard Charnwut Chan, Executive Director and Deputy Managing Director of Asia Financial Group.

The inauguration at the Island Shangri-La Hotel was attended by Mr Korn Dabbaransi, Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, Mr Antony Leung, Financial Secretary of the Hong Kong SAR, Mr Henry Tang, Secretary for Commerce, Industry and Technology, and Mr Ji Peiding, Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China in Hong Kong SAR, as well as advisors and founding members of the Council.


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