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China : Global Citizen Forum Event in April 2013 at Shenzhen (China) – ‘Empowering youth – Men and Women

In keeping with the GCF motto of expanding opportunities available to the youth, we took the forum to China. As the world’s fastest growing economy, China’s contribution to today’s globalised society and in the years to come will be undeniable. At a time, when youth across the world are gaining international access through technology that is produced in China, the youth in the country need to be pioneers of this development.

Presently, though Hongkong and Shenzhen are part of the same country, there are numerous ‘exit and entry restrictions’ that govern travel for work and study between the two areas. Travel to either side of the separating water body requires visas issued on special permit documents and are subject to the ‘exit and entry’ control bodies on either sides of the border. Though the barriers are necessary to maintain the integrity of Mainland China and Hongkong, they sometimes delimit the opportunity available to the youth for professional and personal growth.

GCF proposed for the relaxing of such restrictions (keeping them within the framework of Chinese and Hongkong integrity and security) for the youth on either side to take maximum advantage of the booming economies in Shenzhen and Hongkong. Benchmarking the immigration rules governing passage between Singapore and Malaysia, GCF suggested the development of a similar system for passage between Hongkong and Shenzhen. Such a move, will help Shenzhen and Hongkong build a stronger, more skilled workforce and achieve growth targets quicker.