Players cite city's three-dimensional qualities for hosting the next Global Forum of Accountants ahead of regional rivals The advantages Hong Kong has over Australia and Singapore when it comes to hosting an international accountant conference include its geographical proximity to the mainland and its free business environment. This is the analysis of student Tse Yuen-ting, the winner of the ACCA Hong Kong Job Hunting Competition 2008. Classified Post is the media sponsor for the event. Divided into three teams for a business meeting simulation, the 12 finalists were asked to present a business proposal to bid for the right to host the next Global Forum of Accountants under the theme 'the world needs three-dimensional accountants'. Rival bids were likely to be tendered by Australia and Singapore. Ms Tse's team was the only one that included a comparison of the three event bidders. When one of the judges, playing the role of a Chinese government official, challenged her team to explain why Hong Kong was more suitable than Beijing, Ms Tse demonstrated that she could think on her feet. 'Hong Kong is an international city ... a gateway to China and the global business community,' she said. The final round of the competition kicked off in the morning when three teams of four were briefed on the outline of a concept business proposal that would be presented to a committee of government officials in a business meeting simulation. Under the judges' observation, they spent the next two hours brainstorming and putting together a presentation, which included marketing and finance plans. Following a 20-minute presentation, the judges and the other contending teams challenged each team with questions about its business proposal. Although the contestants were grouped into teams, the judges identified individual winners. 'As we were the last group to do the presentation, we needed to put extra effort in coming up with some 'gimmicks' to differentiate our proposal from the others,' Ms Tse said. 'This was the most challenging part of the contest for me.' She is a second-year bachelor of social sciences (government and laws) student at the University of Hong Kong (HKU). First runner-up Lester Fung Ka-kei, found the group discussion the most difficult part of the final. 'We were slightly at a loss [over how to set the overall approach] when we started the group discussion,' he said. 'The tight schedule was also challenging. We needed to be mindful of the time constraints and we wanted to brainstorm more innovative ideas.' Mr Fung is a third-year bachelor of business administration (law) student at HKU. Aggie Ng Sin-yu, a second-year bachelor of arts in English language and literature student at Hong Kong Baptist University, was the second runner-up. The fourth place went to Jansy Man Wing-sze, a second-year HKU bachelor of business administration (law) programme student, and Carrie Ng Ka-yuk, a first-year student of bachelor of business administration in global business at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, came fifth. This year's competition attracted more than 260 contestants who are full-time and non final-year undergraduates of the city's nine universities. Sixty were selected to take the Business Language Testing Service test for an evaluation of their standard of business English. Twenty-five contestants entered the job interview simulations in the semi-finals and eventually 12 advanced to the final. The 12 finalists and selected candidates will each get a place in the summer internship programmes organised by the contest's sponsoring companies. The final's panel of seven judges were Morison Chan Chi-kong, president of the Association of Chartered Accountants Hong Kong; Shirley Fung Shuk-yee, chief administrator of the chairman's office, DTZ; Jessie Hui, associate editor of Classified Post; Flora Shing Wai-fong, assistant human resources director, human resources and office support department of The Prudential Assurance; Anthony Tam Chun-hung, deputy managing partner of tax services, China southern region of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu; Peter Wong Yat-hang, group chief financial officer, Taifook Securities Group; and Aiken Yuen Yiu-chung, vice-president of human resources at American International Group. The winners found the competition a valuable learning experience. '[Through the competition] I have learnt a lot from the other contestants ... such as effective organisational skills,' Aggie Ng said. Ms Man agreed. 'We had the chance to interact with many talented contestants.'