The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Brussels (HKETO, Brussels) participated in South Summit in Madrid to promote business opportunities in Hong Kong for European start-ups. The attendants' attention was drawn to initiatives announced by the Chief Executive in her Policy Address.
Speaking as a member of a panel titled "Accelerate your research: The most relevant emerging business opportunities in Asia", the Special Representative for Hong Kong Economic and Trade Affairs to the European Union, Mr Eddie Cheung, said Hong Kong was a technology-savvy city serving as the perfect testing ground for new ideas and technologies for entrepreneurs. Quoting figures in the HKSAR Chief Executive's annual Policy Address, Mr Cheung said, "Hong Kong ranks first and second in the world in terms of 5G coverage and stability respectively." Hong Kong was also a liveable place with fun filled with cultural vibrancy.
Noting the initiatives under "New Impetus to the Economy" in the Policy Address, Mr Cheung said, "Hong Kong is an important financing hub for start-ups with venture capitalists, private equities and family offices as sources of funding for entrepreneurs. In addition, the Cyberport and the Hong Kong Science Park are clusters of innovative companies and incubators for start-ups. Hong Kong welcomes talents from Spain and Europe."
On protection of intellectual property (IP), Mr Cheung said Hong Kong's IP protection regime was on par with those in advanced economies. Hong Kong's independent judiciary and its role as an international dispute resolution centre provided additional comfort to innovative start-ups to domicile in Hong Kong.
Exchanges were moderated by technologist and entrepreneur, Ms Cecilia Tham. Other members of the panel were the Partner and Managing Director of Chinaccelerator, Mr Oscar Ramos, and the Managing Director of Brinc Accelerator, Mr Heriberto Saldivar.
South Summit, held on 5-7 October 2021, is the leading annual event in the south of Europe which puts the most innovative entrepreneurs in contact with major international investors and companies interested in increasing their competitiveness through innovation. Organised by the IE University in collaboration with Madrid City Council in both a physical and digital format, this year's theme was "Shape the Future", with an emphasis on merging business and innovation in a green ecosystem to do business sustainably. Also present were representatives of the "Top 100 start-ups", chosen regardless of their industry or development stage from over 3 800 projects from more than 124 countries which took part in the event's 2021 Startup Competition.