As the world's two largest economies continue to wage an escalating tariff war, global trade was one of the primary topics on the agenda.
At a CNBC session during the conference that was developed in partnership with the World Economic Forum, Alan Bollard, executive director of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Secretariat said the trade friction between Washington and Beijing is "looking worryingly bilateral."
"There are some big currents around this region coming from there," he added.
For one, Hong Kong is grappling with the difficult trading climate, given the country's role as a bridge into and out of China, according to Victor Chu, chairman and CEO of First Eastern Investment Group. He said "there will be serious repercussions if the trade war is going to be more than a short-term phenomenon."
Chu mentioned that Hong Kong is "looking at closer relationships with Japan and ASEAN, while contributing to China." In fact, the city signed a trade agreement with ASEAN last November.