For International

Podcast Ep 10: Hong Kong’s growing ecosystem - Albert Wong, CEO, Hong Kong Science and Technology Park

On our first episode for 2018, the Aussie Innovators in Hong Kong podcast is looking at the Hong Kong ecosystem and the levels of support available to Australian startups looking to come to Hong Kong.

In this episode we are focused on how the Hong Kong Government is supporting the I&T ecosystem with our guest Albert Wong, CEO of Hong Kong Science and Technology Park.

The casual observer of the Hong Kong I&T ecosystem notices momentum has increased here even in the last twelve to twenty four months.

In her recent policy address the Chief Executive announced a number of signature initiatives to help position HK as an I&T hub in the region. These included:
- a tax deduction for expenditure incurred by private enterprises on R&D, to the tune of 300 per cent for the first HK$2 million and 200 per cent for the remainder
- the launch of a HK$500 million Technology Talent Scheme to establish a Postdoctoral Hub to provide funding support for enterprises to recruit postdoctoral talent for scientific research and product development
- a HK$3 billion to provide studentships for local students to engage in research postgraduate programmes.
- increased investment funding to support start-ups, including the HK$2 billion Innovation and Technology Venture Fund into which private VC companies are invited to con-invest with Government in technology start-ups.
- Continue to provide technological research infrastructure and related facilities via Science Park, Cyberport, Hong Kong Productivity Council and R&D Centres.
- Further develop this infrastructure through the expansion of Science Park, the development of the Data Technology Hub and the Advanced Manufacturing Centre in the Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate, progressing the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation and Technology Park at the Lok Ma Chau Loop
- Forming a new Policy Innovation and Co-ordination Unit working directly to the CE to review existing legislation and regulations to remove outdated provisions that have been perceived as impeding the development of innovation and technology
- Opening up government data for use as raw materials in technological research, innovation and development of smart city. The Hospital Authority is taking steps to set up a big data analytics platform on health data, with other useful data in other areas to follow.
- Adjusting government procurement methods to include I&T as a criterion in the selection process, with a view to encouraging local technological innovation.

Hong Kong is motivated to move on developing its I&T capability as the last five years has seen Shenzhen far outpace the SAR with its development of high tech industry and capacity to attracted talent and investment. It is said that Hong Kong is some 14 years behind Shenzhen in terms of I&T capability and adoption - so the government is eager to catch up.

Against this backdrop it was fascinating to sit down with Albert, who comes to Hong Kong Science Park with some 30 years in the private sector, most recently working with GE. Albert provides a frank overview about the Hong Kong ecosystem, and provides invaluable insight for any Australian tech company looking to land in Hong Kong and understand the various forms of Government support available to them.

Click here to enjoy the episode.