According to a recent report, The Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) announced the highlights of its activities for the new financial year 2019/20 which leverages opportunities arising from the Guangdong – Hong Kong – Macao Greater Bay Area (Greater Bay Area), the Belt and Road Initiative and the global drive towards technology and innovation.
The Council will also help Hong Kong companies navigate the challenges faced by businesses by identifying new export and sourcing markets, new sectors with clear growth potential, and ways to access different markets.
The HKTDC Chairman noted the Greater Bay Area reinforces Hong Kong’s advantages in areas including finance, trade, innovation and technology, adding that the city can play an important role in international asset management, risk management and technology commercialisation.
Finding opportunities from the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area
The HKTDC has also MOUs with the 10 other Greater Bay Area cities, and will further cooperate with the Guangdong provincial government to organise overseas missions to “go out” and explore investment opportunities in both mature and emerging markets, including countries along the Belt and Road.
In addition, the HKTDC will promote Hong Kong’s edge in connecting the Greater Bay Area with global business communities, as well as exploring the potential of the consumer market and technology sector in the region.
The Council will feature the Greater Bay Area in its flagship events aimed at encouraging overseas companies to leverage Hong Kong’s advantages to expand into the Greater Bay Area and beyond.
Another major initiative by the HKTDC includes organising an event in Guangzhou to promote Hong Kong’s financial services, professional services and innovative technologies, incorporating Industry 4.0, advanced manufacturing technologies, automation and robotics as new elements.
The HKTDC will also cooperate with Cyberport and the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation to encourage Hong Kong tech start-ups to exhibit in the event, helping them to raise funds, attract partners and facilitate business connections.
With technological advancement, another key focus in the Greater Bay Area is to nurture start-ups and a new generation of entrepreneurs.
The HKTDC currently offers start-up zones at eight of its local events to showcase Hong Kong innovation and creativity to global buyers, helping start-ups attract new investors and markets. A total of 412 start-ups exhibited in the start-up zones of various HKTDC trade fairs and conferences last year, representing 30% growth over 2017.
In the coming year, HKTDC will set up start-up zones at more large scale-events, enhancing the scale and internationality of the zones by recruiting more start-ups, including those from the Greater Bay Area. The Council will organise networking and business-matching activities for Hong Kong start-ups with their counterparts in the Greater Bay Area at various events.
It will also organise the second edition of an open-innovation competition encouraging start-ups to make use of their existing intellectual properties to develop new products and services.
Continuing to promote Hong Kong as the Belt and Road’s commercial hub
The HKTDC Chairman also noted that 2018 saw many companies find new business in green construction, smart city development, power generation, real estate, marketing services and more. The HKTDC Belt and Road Committee and its six working groups organised various activities, and will continue to encourage wider participation in the Belt and Road through various forums and the six working groups.
Developing new markets
The HKTDC has various strategies to help local companies tackle challenges arising from the changing trade landscape.
The Council will lead Hong Kong companies to participate in large-scale exhibitions outside the United States, including Japan, Germany and Spain, to promote Hong Kong brands, products and services.
It will also set up a “Hong Kong Pavilion” in major trade fairs in Mainland China and overseas markets, providing enhanced business-matching services to help Hong Kong traders find new partners and access new markets.
The HKTDC is also stepping up publicity in emerging markets, including organising events in Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries.
It will also organise business missions to Kenya and Mexico to expand companies’ networks, and partner with multipliers such as the Hong Kong Productivity Council and Hong Kong Federation of Industries to organise sector-specific manufacturing partnership and investment missions to explore alternative manufacturing locations in ASEAN.
In the past year, the Council set up a new feature webpage to introduce changes in the United States trade policy and details support measures offered by the HKSAR Government.
The Council also organised several seminars to provide practical tips and the enhanced services for the SMEs, attracting 1,000 local companies to take part.