Hong Kong's success as a regional business and financial centre lies in its global connections. We have made use of those long-established links to great effect in the past, pulling in trade, investment and international corporations to grow our economy. It is a strategy that remains the basis of our future development. Yet, as Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen has so correctly pointed out, we have lost focus on our position in the world because of excessive attention to the mainland's blossoming. Tsang made the self-criticism last week as he prepared for his first official visit to India. The nation's economy was surging almost as strongly as the mainland's, yet Hong Kong was sitting on the sidelines letting competitors like Singapore step in and harvest the fruit, he said. With the mainland holding our gaze, an opportunity was being let slip. More effort was needed to woo trade and investment. Such honesty from a government, and a community, that is so fixated by the mainland is refreshing. Of course, the mainland has been instrumental in making Hong Kong what it is today, and will remain a huge opportunity. But that should not blind us to other possibilities, especially when we have so much experience, expertise and advantage. Put simply, we should not put all our eggs in one basket. Yet look at where we put our dollars when it comes to trade and tourism promotion and policies. Of the 20 Trade Development Council offices in Asia, 12 are on the mainland and there is just one in India, the world's second most populous country. There is no representation in the Philippines and Vietnam, our nearest neighbours and the second- and third-biggest nations in Southeast Asia. India also does not rate a mention among the 13 Economic and Trade offices in the world, although there are three on the mainland. Indeed, Hong Kong has official and semi-official offices generously dotted throughout the nation, offering a two-way network of information and help to visitors, businesspeople and investors. It is to be expected given our 'one country, two systems' advantage. The presence is impressive because just 13 years have passed since the switch of sovereignty from Britain. Still, we have had exposure to the region and rest of the world for much longer. Our brand, after all, is Asia's world city - that is, a global centre based in the region, and not one just focused on the mainland. To be sure, Hong Kong companies have individual presences around the world. Often they do not need government help to succeed. Nonetheless, a broader policy that takes in the rest of the region and the world would be welcomed. The mainland's growth has been phenomenal, but that of India, Vietnam and Brazil, to name a few, has in recent years been as stunning. A few of our companies have been quick to take advantage, with little or no support from our government. Imagine what more they could do with some help. Tsang has made known that this has to change. Singapore, for one, has noted our weaknesses and quickly stepped in where we should have been first. Vietnam now looks not to Hong Kong for trade, education and medical expertise, as it should, but to Singapore. Increasingly, that is also the case with India. It is a situation that, for the sake of our city's future direction, we should rectify.