For Immediate Release - December 16, 2013

GOVERNOR PATRICK PROMOTES THE COMMONWEALTH’S GROWING FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY WITH SECTOR LEADERS IN HONG KONG

Monday, December 16, 2013 – As part of his Massachusetts-Asia Innovation Partnership Mission, Governor Deval Patrick on Friday met with top officials and business leaders in Hong Kong to discuss ways to strengthen the connection between the Massachusetts and Hong Kong financial services sectors. The financial services roundtable, hosted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, included representatives from the Commonwealth’s delegation, Natixis Global Asset Management and State Street Corporation.

The financial services sector is a key industry in Massachusetts, employing more than 170,000 people, over 5 percent of the state’s total employment. In 2012, the companies in this sector generated $40.7 billion in gross state product, representing 10 percent of the Commonwealth’s total gross state product. Massachusetts is also the birthplace of the mutual fund industry and has remained a national leader since its inception. 

"Coming from Boston, with our depth in financial services, to Hong Kong, one of the great financial centers in the world, presents the marvelous opportunity to share perspectives on the challenges and opportunities before the financial services sector," said Governor Patrick. "The doors of Massachusetts open to the world, and we are eager to strengthen our existing global relationships and build new ones.  With the world in the midst of a knowledge explosion, capital more globalized than ever and talent trying to be as well, it is important for us to collaborate with innovators, inventors and investors around the world."

Hong Kong is the Commonwealth’s 11th largest export partner, exporting $708.9 million to the Commonwealth in 2012. Hong Kong is also a top international financial and commercial center and a key global logistics and service hub. The United States is the largest importer of goods and services from Hong Kong, consuming approximately 74 percent of all the Special Administrative Region’s exports in 2012.

“The financial services sector continues to be an important economic driver in Massachusetts,” said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki. “Based on our experiences in Hong Kong, we look forward to finding additional opportunities for strengthen collaboration with our foreign counterparts in government and the business leaders of this vital sector.”

The Patrick Administration has made significant efforts to attract and support the financial services sector since taking office.  The Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) and Massport have worked closely with the financial services community to increase the number of nonstop international flights to large financial centers such as Tokyo. The Administration has also actively worked with financial service companies to ensure the sector’s workforce needs are met here in Massachusetts.  Over the last three years, the Workforce Training Fund has provided grants to several financial services companies that are expected to help create 95 new jobs, retain 858 jobs and leverage $655,520 in private investment.

From December 7-17, Governor Patrick is leading a delegation of the Commonwealth’s government and industry leaders on the Massachusetts-Asia Innovation Partnership Mission to strengthen the state’s partnerships with Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore, and to expand opportunities between the Commonwealth and region for economic development and job creation in the innovation, life sciences, financial services, clean tech and transportation sectors.

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