CE attends art webinar

June 7, 2021
Cultural co-operation
Cultural co-operation:

Chief Executive Carrie Lam (centre) meets art gallery representatives at a webinar to brief them on Hong Kong’s competitive edge as an international arts and cultural hub.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam today met representatives of Mainland and overseas art galleries at a webinar to promote Hong Kong’s growing competitive edge as an international arts and cultural hub.


Mrs Lam said that Hong Kong has been an East-meets-West hub for international arts and cultural exchanges. To enhance cultural co-operation, Hong Kong has signed memoranda of understanding with 20 countries which facilitate cultural activities such as staff exchanges, education, training, research and business matching. The Leisure & Cultural Services Department had also entered into memoranda with world-renowned museums such as the British Museum and the Gallerie degli Uffizi to strengthen cultural exchanges and co-operation.


“The professionalism and passion of Hong Kong’s museums are well recognised by the community of collectors and artists. In addition, Hong Kong is blessed with a rich private collection; many of the collectors are supporters of our public museums,” she said.


The Chief Executive also highlighted that Hong Kong is quickly developing into a major global art trading centre thanks to the city’s low and simple tax regime with no customs duty, value-added taxes or estate duty on artworks, freedom of expression, a robust intellectual property protection regime, and comprehensive private wealth management.


The city's heavy investment in upgrading cultural hardware and building new facilities, coupled with the efforts of private developers to enhance artistic elements in their properties, enable the public to enjoy a variety of arts and cultural activities. In addition, Hong Kong plays host to a number of large-scale and well-received annual international art fairs like Art Basel Hong Kong, Art Central and the French May Arts Festival, attracting plenty of art lovers.


Mrs Lam noted that Hong Kong’s position will be further boosted as the 14th Five-Year Plan and Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035 have encouraged the city for the first time to develop into a hub for arts and cultural exchanges between the Mainland and the rest of the world, adding that these echoed the Culture & Tourism Development Plan for the Greater Bay Area which indicated support for Hong Kong to develop into a more competitive global platform for cultural exchanges.


“Given Hong Kong’s competitive edge and bright prospects in art and cultural development, and the recent drop in rentals in the commercial property market amid the epidemic, I believe that it is the best time for international art galleries and world-renowned artists to expand their presence in Hong Kong,” the Chief Executive said.


Organised by Art Basel and attended by directors and founders of art galleries in major cities around the world and in the Mainland, the webinar was also joined by Secretary for Home Affairs Caspar Tsui and Under Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Bernard Chan.

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