The very best of British

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 01 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 May, 2012, 12:00am


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Britons will be keen to portray themselves as good sports this summer, with London hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

It will put Britain in the spotlight for a spectacular sporting four weeks.

Away from the sporting scene there is Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee, marking her 60 years on the throne and culminating in the Jubilee Weekend from June 2-5.

Perhaps much less spectacular but of no less importance is the continuing thriving trade situation between Britain and Hong Kong.

Last year, Britain's exports to the city grew more than 20 per cent, making Hong Kong Britain's 13th largest export market. Power-generating machinery and equipment - valued at GBP1.05 billion (HK$13.24 billion ) - made up the bulk of exports, although there were significant quantities of telecommunications and sound recording equipment (GBP707 million), electrical machinery (GBP331 million) and GBP275 million worth of beverages, much of which likely acknowledged Hong Kong's continued taste for the output of British breweries.

Hong Kong ranked as Britain's 14th largest import market last year, with goods totalling GBP7.33 billion, a slight decrease on 2010. One of the most prominent British corporations associated with Hong Kong business is British Airways (BA). The British flag carrier has long played a part in Hong Kong's international transport, and sees the city as the ideal springboard for expanding its presence into the mainland and the rest of the region.

'Hong Kong is our main base in Asia. We've been flying here for more than 75 years,' says Kevin McQuillan, BA's regional general manager for East Asia.

'Given its superb economic environment, Hong Kong acts as a gateway to the region, both to the mainland and other parts of Asia. It's a growth market, for business and leisure passengers, and we recently increased the number of flights to and from London to cater for that.

'Some people will be avoiding England this summer, but others will be flying there especially because of the events taking place, so we are really very excited about the prospect.

'We also recently introduced a major enhancement to our website that enables travellers from 11 additional Chinese cities - Chongqing, Changsha, Chengdu, Fuzhou, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Nanjing, Sanya, Wuhan, Guangzhou and Xiamen - to book flights on

'This allows us to better serve China's fast-growing and increasingly important secondary cities.'