The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a sovereign state in northern Europe which includes England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. It is governed under a constitutional monarchy and a democratic parliamentary system made up of two houses; an elected House of Commons and an appointed House of Lords. It has a population of more than 62 million and has the world's seventh-largest economy by nominal GDP. It is predominantly a Christian country, although successive waves of migration have contributed to the growth of other faiths. It is a member of the European Union as well as the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, G7, G8, G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the World Trade Organization.
A taste of foreign culture
Two groups of young people who visited Britain and Germany for three weeks have returned with a wider perspective of the world.
The youths, aged between 18 and 24, were selected from more than 100 candidates for the trips in the summer under the International Youth Exchange Programme.
The programme, organised by the Commission on Youth and the Home Affairs Branch, aimed to broaden the outlook and vision of young people and to give them a chance to exchange ideas and experiences with their overseas counterparts.
The participants visited youth organisations, schools and universities in Britain and took part in recreational activities.
In Germany, home-stays were arranged to give the young people a better understanding of culture and life there.
Apart from reporting details of their visits, the young delegates shared with commission members their views and observations about the political system, education and youth work of the countries they visited.
Young people from Britain and Germany will visit Hong Kong next year in exchange.