When risk can be too close for comfort

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 25 June, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 25 June, 2003, 12:00am

The Bank of China's incoming chairman and president, Xiao Gang, has been promoting his philosophy towards risk management following the sudden departure of BOC Hong Kong boss Liu Jinbao.

According to official media, a meeting was held recently where Mr Xiao proposed a number of measures at the bank.

These include:

the building up of a 'big' risk-management concept;

the setting up of a risk-management mechanism based on global standards;

comprehensive risk management sectors;

an overall risk management process;

a brand new risk management method;

using risk management as the core of risk management controls.

This is all very well. But what about risk management at the bank?


Travel guides are a tricky business. They tend to date quite easily. This is a point that seems to have escaped The Guardian's travel section.

The paper has decided to feature Hong Kong as a cheap and now-cheerful place to visit. It has compiled a post-Sars guide.

The only problem is that it is barely post-Suzie Wong never mind post-Sars. It has described nightclub Blush as the 'best place for a dance' - except that it closed many moons ago.

It also advises people to pick up a copy of the SCMP's weekly 24/7 guide every Friday for more details on what's on - another distant memory.

The all-time classic, however, is a warning on eating out. 'Naming all the Chinese eateries would be like listing all the Jones in the Swansea phone book. Follow your nose or ask around, but once inside don't expect anyone to speak English ...''

And for God's sake, don't forget your pith helmet.


Luxury health resort Chiva-Som has decided to share some information with Lai See. The media-guzzling Beckhams chose its Hua Hin resort in Thailand for the perfect getaway.

The pair was, of course, escaping the glare of the press and exhausting marketing obligations.

David Beckham and Victoria 'Posh Spice'' arrived quietly at the spa last weekend for a few days of pampering. The resort describes itself thus as the perfect haven from promotional life. Except oh, what is this document we are actually reading from Chiva-Som? Oh yes, it's a p-r-o-m-o-t-i-o-n. A p-r-o-m-o-t-i-o-n to promote a haven from p-r-o-m-o-t-i-o-n. Cunning stuff.


Lai See was intrigued to read that Standard & Poor's plans to hold a media session tomorrow to discuss corporate financial disclosure in Greater China.

The quality of financial reporting standards will quite rightly be in the spotlight. Or as Standard & Poor's puts it: 'Corporate Financial Transparency Under Scrtiny.'' Good to see its own internal checgks and bfalances come up to scratchk.


Leave a space in your diary for a special event tomorrow, featuring candidates for verbose anonymous.

Actually, it's just another cheque presentation for the elderly. But you wouldn't think it by reading the government spin for the event to be attended by Director of Social Welfare Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor.

It is the all-catchy 'New Era for Community Support Services for Elders Launching Ceremony cum Cheque Presentation for Facility Upgrade for Elderly Service Units at Olympian City'.

Eh? Sounds like a nice excuse for a cup of tea and a biscuit.

But Lai See should not be so flippant. According to the government blurb, this is the chance for members of the public to thank our more senior volunteers for helping to build a 'caring society and promote intergenerational solidarity'.

Eh? An intergenerational society. Tough one to get your false teeth around.

Got a question for Lai See? laisee@scmp.com Tel: 2565 2632 Fax: 2565 1624