5 Oct 2005
Hong Kong, Spain enhance business ties
Hong Kong and Spanish companies can enjoy closer partnerships, increased cooperation and business links, after a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed in Madrid on 29 September by the two regions' leading trade promotion bodies.
Fred Lam, executive director of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC) and Mr Jose Maria Lacasa, director of international relations, Confederation of Spanish Employers & Industries (CEOE) signed the agreement during a business seminar in Madrid titled "Hong Kong: Turning China into Opportunity".
The agreement facilitates Spanish companies wishing to set up an office or do business in Hong Kong, and smooths the way for Hong Kong companies looking to import or export products to and from Spain.
"Spain is a priority market for Hong Kong, and we hope to see more Spanish companies using Hong Kong as a base for doing business with China," said Mr Lam.
Mr Lacasa said that no Spanish companies could afford to ignore the China market and he expected the agreement would lead to further partnership.
The Madrid seminar was the final event of a 3-day roadshow to Spain organized by TDC, including seminars in Barcelona and Valencia on 27 and 28 September. The events attracted more than 700 people in the three cities.
A delegation of Hong Kong service providers also travelled to Spain to provide advice on doing business in the region. They included representatives from Spanish bank BBVA's Hong Kong branch, PricewaterhouseCoopers, law firm Thomas Mayer & Associes, North Asia Corporate Services, C.K Cheung Consultants and Grupo Santander.
Total trade between Spain and Hong Kong increased 12 per cent in the first half of 2005 to US$1.2 billion.
There are 100 Spanish companies doing business in Hong Kong, with 23 using Hong Kong as a base for their regional headquarters.