More key decision-makers from global family powerhouses are eyeing Hong Kong to set up shop, the city’s finance minister has revealed following a recent high-level summit aimed at such individuals.
Pointing to surging demand in art transactions of high-net-worth families, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po on Sunday said their entrance would also boost Hong Kong’s development as a global art auction and trading centre.
“Many decision-makers have also said the speed of Hong Kong’s economic recovery, as well as its vitality and charm, is impressive. They are planning or have already decided to establish a family office in Hong Kong,” he wrote on his official blog, without revealing names.
The Post on Wednesday reported that Thailand’s Chearavanont clan, whose members have dominated the country’s billionaires list for decades, planned to set up a family office in the city.
Chan’s latest remarks came two days after speaking at the “Wealth for Good in Hong Kong” summit, which brought together more than 400 participants including more than 100 key decision-makers of global family offices or private entities formed to manage the fortunes of affluent individuals and forge early succession plans.
It was the first event of its kind organised by the government to engage industry experts and wealthy prospective clients, taking place on Friday at the Hong Kong Palace Museum and coinciding with flagship contemporary arts fair Art Basel Hong Kong.
“Their investments are not only limited to financial products … They have great demand for art transactions, collections and management,” he said.
“Attracting more family offices to Hong Kong will help develop the city as a global art auction and trading centre.”
Authorities on Friday announced a list of incentives for family offices to establish a presence in the city, such as a relaunched investment-migration scheme, tax exemptions and the establishment of art storage facilities at the airport.
Other government measures include the setting up of a new Hong Kong Academy for Wealth Legacy under the Financial Services Development Council, a move aimed at cultivating a talent pool for family offices in Hong Kong.
Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu previously stated his aim to get at least 200 of the world’s top family offices to set up or expand operations in the city by 2025.
In 2021, Hong Kong’s total trade value of artworks, collectors’ pieces and antiques reached HK$66.6 billion (US$8.5 billion), ranking among the top in the world and quadruple the value in 2017.
Chan on Sunday will commence his five-day trip to Malaysia and Singapore to promote the city’s advantages in finance, arts, culture, as well as innovation and technology to officials, businessmen and academics.
The minister will stay in Kuala Lumpur till Tuesday, where he will meet senior government officials and business leaders, and tour a number of enterprises, before heading to Singapore to speak with local representatives, take part in exchange sessions, as well as join a conference organised by the Post.