Program for HK civil servants to work in mainland: Carrie Lam

Local | 11 May 2021 4:24 pm

Agreements will be signed with Shenzhen and Guangdong governments to allow posting exchanges between Hong Kong and mainland civil servants, Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor told state media. 

Similar agreements were signed with Beijing and Shanghai governments before, and the SAR government will turn its focus to the Greater Bay Area, she said in a CCTV program on Monday night. 

“By letting (Hong Kong) civil servants to be posted in cities like Shenzhen and Guangdong, they can have an in-depth understanding of how things run in the mainland cities, especially those within the Greater Bay Area,” Lam said. 

She also welcomed mainland civil servants to be posted for exchange in Hong Kong. 

Lam hoped Hong Kong can contribute and also benefit in development of the Greater Bay area. With its advantage as a free economy, Hong Kong can help attract  international businesses to invest in the area. 

Greater Bay can also help solve Hong Kong's livelihood problems. More elderly people now wish to retire on the mainland, where there are more space and bigger houses, according to Lam. 

Lam rejected opinions that Greater Bay Area will hollow out Hong Kong, saying that the many talents raised in the city need a bigger market to use their skills. 

Secretary for Civil Service Patrick Nip Tak-kuen told lawmakers last month that the SAR government is exploring with its mainland counterparts how to facilitate posting of civil servants on the mainland. 

Authorities are also mulling to introduce a requirement for new civil servants to finish a training course on the mainland within their three-year probation before they can turn into permanent staff. 

Around 100 civil servants participates in exchange tours to the mainland every year, Nip said. These tours will be expanded to more Greater Bay cities, Nip said. 

Exchanges between Hong Kong and mainland civil servants started in 2002 when the SAR government signed an agreement with Shanghai, allowing civil servants from the two places to join a three-month exchange program. 

The program aimed to allow participants to learn each other's skills in professional fields and management, as well as broaden their perspectives.

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