Business with Hong Kong

Business with Hong Kong

With a central location in east Asia and with a rapidly growing Mainland China as its hinterland, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is an international business, trade and financial hub. Building on its traditional free market economic policy, Hong Kong has developed into a modern, vibrant and cosmopolitan services economy, underpinning the role of the city as a global business platform.

Hong Kong is so far the most important transhipment port of the Chinese mainland. According to the HKSAR government statistics, in 2016, 59% of re-exports were of China origin. According to China's Customs statistics, Hong Kong is the second largest trading partner of the Chinese mainland after the US in 2016.

Hong Kong is the largest source of overseas direct investment in the Chinese mainland. By the end of 2016, among all the overseas-funded projects approved in the Chinese Mainland, 44.7% were tied to Hong Kong interests. Cumulative utilised capital inflow from Hong Kong amounted to US$913.7 billion, accounting for 51.8% of the national total.

Since the introduction of the Pilot RMB Trade Settlement Scheme by the Central Government in July 2009, Hong Kong has succeeded in expanding its RMB business by offering a number of RMB-denominated financial products and services, including trade finance, stocks, bonds and funds. Since the debut of the scheme, banks in Hong Kong had handled RMB trade settlement totalling RMB21 trillion as of October 2015, which represented some 70% of the world’s total. RMB deposits in Hong Kong, excluding RMB certificates of deposits, totalled RMB628 billion as of November 2016, more than tenfold the level seen in July 2009.

Besides the cross-boundary endeavours like the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB) and the Hong Kong section of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link (XRL), the government has undertaken other large-scale infrastructure projects to improve the local transportation system, promote long-term development for arts and culture, and provide quality living space to citizens.

As the busiest cargo gateway and one of the 10 passenger airports in the world, the Hong Kong International Airport needs an expansion since the existing two-runway system will reach its full capacity soon, according to the Hong Kong Airport Authority. The construction of the Three-runway System has started in 2016 for completion in 2024, with the commissioning of the new runway expected in 2022.

Hong Kong’s Trading Partners

Hong Kong's import and export trading sector exports its services mainly in the form of offshore buying and selling of goods. Given Hong Kong's proximity and the relocation of Hong Kong's manufacturing bases to the mainland, particularly the Pearl River Delta, the Chinese mainland is a major source of offshore trading activities.

  • 1. China: US$285.5 billion (55.3% of total Hong Kong exports)
  • 2. United States: $42 billion (8.1%)
  • 3. India: $15.4 billion (3%)
  • 4. Japan: $15.1 billion (2.9%)
  • 5. United Kingdom: $11.2 billion (2.2%)
  • 6. Taiwan: $10.2 billion (2%)
  • 7. Thailand: $10.1 billion (1.9%)
  • 8. Singapore: $9.4 billion (1.8%)
  • 9. Vietnam: $9.4 billion (1.8%)
  • 10. Switzerland: $9.3 billion (1.8%)
  • 11. Germany: $8.6 billion (1.7%)
  • 12. South Korea: $7.7 billion (1.5%)
  • 13. Netherlands: $7.4 billion (1.4%)
  • 14. United Arab Emirates: $7 billion (1.4%)
  • 15. Macao: $5.3 billion (1%)

Hong Kong’s Exports

The world’s sixth-largest exporter, Hong Kong shipped US$516.6 billion worth of products around the globe in 2016. That figure represents roughly 3.2% of overall global exports estimated at $16.236 trillion.

From a continental perspective, over three-quarters (76.3%) of Hong Kong exports by value are delivered to other Asian countries.

European importers purchased 11.5% of Hong Kong shipments while 9.3% worth arrived in North American countries. At 0.9%, a much smaller portion of Hong Kong exports were bought by African importers.