Enthusiastic stakeholders support a financial literacy strategy
Over 150 leaders of the government, finance, education and community sectors gathered at the IEC's inaugural financial literacy forum on 10 November to discuss promoting and improving financial knowledge and capability in Hong Kong.
In his keynote address for the forum themed "advancing financial education through collaboration and innovation," Professor K C Chan, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, highlighted the importance of financial literacy and the socio-economic benefits it would bring Hong Kong.The forum provided a platform for exchange of experiences and cross-sectoral collaboration about how to address the financial education needs of people in Hong Kong.
Mr David Kneebone, General Manager of the IEC, said: "Hong Kong has an increasing and diverse range of financial education initiatives. While we celebrate the diversity of efforts, it's time to harness the enthusiasm, goodwill and strengths of stakeholders from different sectors to set common goals that are conducive to the future development of Hong Kong as an international financial centre."
"A coherent strategy for financial literacy is essential as it assists to avoid duplicated efforts and helps to address gaps in resource production. It will also stimulate greater momentum to increase financial literacy efforts generally and provide a platform to support peer learning and professional development," he added. He also sought the support of stakeholders from various sectors in taking this step forward to advance financial literacy in Hong Kong.
Professor Leonard Cheng, Chairman of the IEC in his opening remarks, said: "We hope the IEC Financial Literacy Forum will provide a good framework for discussions on financial education, especially to build a consensus on how financial education should be understood and practised. Cross-sector collaboration is key to bringing financial education to the next level and enhancing the financial well-being of people in Hong Kong."
Two leading international experts on financial literacy Mr Olaf Simonse from the Netherland's Ministry of Finance and Dr Joanne Yoong from the National University of Singapore also joined the forum to share with the audience the benefits and challenges of implementing a financial literacy strategy; as well as the latest global developments and lessons learned.
Interactive panel discussion was held to exchange ideas on how to advocate a Hong Kong strategy for financial literacy. A business and economics teacher and two secondary students from a local school shared their learning experiences about money management in schools, and academics from the audience exchanged ideas on how to advance financial education from an early age. Long-term financial planning for retirement was also among the discussion topics.