Legislative Council elections 2016

New Legislative Council finance representative vows to push yuan business in Hong Kong

Ronick Chan, like his predecessor Ng Leung-sing, works for the Bank of China (Hong Kong); he was returned to Legco unopposed

PUBLISHED : Monday, 08 August, 2016, 6:33pm
UPDATED : Monday, 08 August, 2016, 6:39pm

The new Legislative Council finance representative, Ronick Chan Chun-ying, has pledged to work to promote the yuan business in Hong Kong.

Like many of his predecessors, the banking veteran was returned to Legco unopposed. He was backed by his employer – Bank of China (Hong Kong) – HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Citibank and Bank of East Asia.

He replaces Ng Leung-sing, who also worked for the Bank of China (Hong Kong). Chan is the bank’s board secretary.

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“I will fight for more development opportunities in the yuan business in Hong Kong and promote [the city’s] fundraising role in the “One Belt, One Road” initiative in the coming years,” Chan told the South China Morning Post.

“After working in the industry for 24 years, I want to do more public duty by representing the banking sector as a lawmaker,” Chan said.

“The financial sector represents 16.6 per cent of Hong Kong’s GDP, while the banking sector represents 10.4 per cent. The industry employs more than 100,000 people and it serves all Hong Kong residents. The banking sector supports the development of all other sectors. I think it is very important to have someone to speak on behalf of the industry,” he said.

Chan, who is in his 50s, was born and educated in Hong Kong. He received an MBA from Louisiana University in the United States. He started his career in a travel firm but the need for frequent travel affected his study plans.

He therefore entered banking in 1992, dealing with syndicated loans at Nanyang Commercial Bank before joining Bank of China (Hong Kong).

Chan is active in professional bodies and is vice-chairman and secretary of the Chinese Banking Association of Hong Kong.

Chan plans to stay at Bank of China (Hong Kong). “I want to continue to work at the bank so that I can be closer to the banking sector,” he said.

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He has not joined any political party and plans to vote according to the needs of the banking sector.

“Banking has a lot of opportunities. Many mainland firms may want to use Hong Kong as a wealth management centre

“Many overseas firms use Hong Kong as a stepping stone to invest in China while mainland firms use Hong Kong to invest overseas,” he said.

“The yuan is going to become a reserve currency in October when it joins the International Monetary Fund special drawing rights currency basket. Many central banks and big fund houses will invest in yuan assets. Hong Kong will need more yuan products to meet this demand,” he said.

Chan said the banking sector was facing the challenge of Brexit and an economic slowdown. But he believed the sector would remain robust through loans to small and medium enterprises and the development of more technology-related products.

Chan said when he first told his wife about his decision to seek election, she was hesitant but supported his decision.

“I got used to working long hours at the bank. I believe I can work long hours in the Legislative Council too,” he said.