Research for Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) in advance of its flagship "Think Asia, Think Hong Kong" event returning to London on 21 September 2017, found that 53% are confident in business growth in Asia and 40% see Hong Kong as the gateway into the Chinese mainland and other Asian countries.
A quarter believe the Brexit debate makes trading with Hong Kong or China more attractive.
70% are attracted to Hong Kong's good levels of English, its proximity to China (35%) and the long standing political relationship between Hong Kong and the UK (29%). The biggest opportunities that businesses recognise for launching into the Chinese mainland is its huge consumer base (29%) and its growing middle class (29%), whilst the challenges include the rule of law and cultural differences (47%), and perceived red tape and regulation (41%).
The research suggests that logistics SMEs have the strongest understanding of foreign business as 24% correctly identified that there are approximately 1,000 UK companies currently operating in Hong Kong. Not surprisingly the big global names of Barclays and were the most recognised at 70% and 53% respectively.
William Chui, Regional Director, Europe of the HKTDC comments: "It's great to see that UK logistic businesses are identifying the benefits of launching into Hong Kong as part of their global growth strategy at this time of European uncertainty. And also, that they are valuing Hong Kong as a hugely well positioned launch pad for businesses wanting to 'crack' the lucrative but notoriously challenging to penetrate Chinese mainland market."
17% of logistics businesses surveyed have traded with Hong Kong or China in the past year, and a further 17% have been considering it over that time frame.