He added that variations in accounting and testing techniques are additionally among the many powerful challenges confronted by start-ups like Roborn, a younger innovation and expertise firm specialising in robotics and analytics.
“A few of our merchandise are made with the worldwide customary as a substitute of the Chinese language customary. So, we have to have simpler conversions with a view to construct our merchandise in China with the Chinese language customary,” he mentioned.
APPEAL OF THE GBA
Regardless of difficulties, companies mentioned there are untapped prospects within the GBA, with a big pool of expertise, available assets, and decrease prices.
“Hurdles are optimistic … as there are many alternatives within the GBA,” mentioned Mr Mak.
“In Hong Kong, manpower and rental are comparatively excessive … so it’s tough for us to supply for dependable and appropriate suppliers. However within the GBA there are many factories and software program homes and design groups – that makes it simpler for us to finish our designs,” he mentioned.
Roborn is certainly one of 100 Hong Kong enterprises registered within the GBA up to now. It mentioned ease of entry is a vital consider its enlargement plans. The corporate established its first mainland workplaces in Qianhai as a stepping stone because it was ready to make use of the Hong Kong forex there, and was provided the identical testing insurance policies.
Since then, the start-up has arrange workplaces in at the very least 5 Chinese language cities together with Dongguan, Shanghai, and Jiangmen.
The GBA, a large growth challenge by Chinese language President Xi Jinping, contains Hong Kong, Macao, and 9 municipalities in Guangdong Province. It spans an space of round 56,000 sq km.
Chinese language media final yr reported a gross home product of 12.6 trillion yuan (US$1.75 trillion) for the GBA – a determine many companies in Hong Kong are hoping to get a share of.
SIMILAR CULTURAL, BUSINESS VALUES
Its proximity, progress potential, high quality buyers, and sheer market measurement – about 85 million individuals – are enticing to Hong Kong companies which can be eager on venturing into the GBA, mentioned Mr Peter Mok, head of the Higher Bay Space on the Hong Kong Science & Know-how Parks Company (HKSTP).
“The language and cultural obstacles are additionally much less, in comparison with different cities additional up north in China. The GBA is the perfect enlargement for the house market, for tech startups in Hong Kong,” mentioned Mr Mok, whose company helps companies discover their footing of their expansions.
“The buyers in GBA include very nice values. Their danger urge for food is increased and so they include a strategic worth – often after they make investments, they know the trade. So it’s not simply cash, it’s additionally enterprise relationships that the buyers are ready to usher in,” he added.
The HKSTP is organising a department in Shenzhen by the top of the yr to strengthen integration hyperlinks, and has instant plans to assist 150 Hong Kong corporations broaden.
“What we’re making an attempt to do is to offer all kinds of providers to the startups to minimise the chance or to enhance the effectivity when leveraging their enterprise into the GBA areas,” mentioned Mr Mok.
“We’re working with varied stakeholders when it comes to facilitation of the individuals’s mobility, move of capital, information or info so far as merchandise throughout the border. Assist them to tender land extra easily into the market first. Earlier than we introduce them to completely different clients, markets, buyers.”
Nonetheless, expansions imply ramping up manpower that Hong Kong is missing, and companies wish to the GBA to fill the vacancies.
HONG KONG TALENT SHORTAGE
Hong Kong’s expertise increase prior to now few years created a surge in demand for know-how that native universities and the prevailing expertise pool couldn’t fill, Mr Mok mentioned, including that there are greater than 4,000 expertise startups at the moment, virtually double that of 5 years in the past.
“We’re making an attempt to develop our technical crew in Hong Kong and the most important hurdle is human assets … expertise is among the most necessary issues that Hong Kong wants for innovation and expertise,” mentioned Mr Mak.
Hong Kong boasts 5 universities among the many prime 100 establishments worldwide ranked by British journal Instances Greater Schooling, together with government-funded analysis institutes and laboratories.
Regardless of this, companies say that Hong Kong lacks these specialising in software, who can bridge the hole from ideation to manufacturing.
“There are many skills and professors within the analysis space however how can we convert these skills to software?” requested Mr Mak. “I imagine we’ve to draw extra skills from all around the world, particularly from China, with a view to make it simpler for conversion from our tutorial analysis.”
HKSTP mentioned that it has engaged native universities and analysis institutes to advertise tech schooling. Younger start-ups are additionally ready faucet into dwelling subsidies to get located. However trade gamers mentioned it takes extra to draw and retain expertise.
“Attracting skills – most necessary is profession and enterprise alternatives that we’re capable of create, supported by capital injections and personal sector investments,” mentioned Mr Mok.
“We can’t simply use the general public cash to maintain on funding non-public enterprise. The system does not work like that. Enterprise is enterprise,” he added.
ALL EYES ON JOHN LEE’S POLICIES
As China builds emphasis on innovation within the area, there’s demand for extra constant rules throughout the board.
“We hope the federal government can give you measures to permit Hong Kong and GBA to have a greater hyperlink, together with info move and expertise move and every kind of knowledge move will probably be simpler for all of the cities to hyperlink collectively,” mentioned Elizabeth Quat, chairperson of the LegCo Subcommittee on Issues Regarding the Growth of Sensible Metropolis.
In his first coverage speech since taking the reins in July, Mr Lee is predicted to put out what he calls “daring measures” to draw skills, companies, and investments to Hong Kong, in addition to stronger operational and manpower assist wanted to entry the GBA.
Companies mentioned they hope Mr Lee unveils initiatives that can encourage startups and enterprise expansions between Hong Kong and the GBA, in addition to appeal to corporations and skills into China by the world.
“We now have expectations for the (coverage tackle) … we’ve to have extra initiatives to draw individuals to Hong Kong,” mentioned Mr Mok.
He added that the position of Hong Kong to draw international skills into the GBA will probably be “very important” within the coming years.
“When we’ve a stronger platform and innovation and expertise in GBA, we will additionally appeal to completely different corporations from completely different components of the world to come back to Hong Kong, or by Hong Kong into the China market,” he mentioned.