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Hong Kong plans upgrade to industrial estates

Hong Kong plans to "rejuvenate" its industrial estates to make them more attractive to modern and specialised forms of manufacturing, according to local media reports. 22 Sep 2015

Alan Ma Kam-sing, chief executive of Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks told China Daily that the first phase will see multi storey factories build by 2020, with a focus on "high value-added" clients such as robotics, pharmaceuticals and biomedical manufacturers.

Ma's company runs three industrial estates in Hong Kong and has already updated its policies to attract more technology related tenants, he told the newspaper.

These tenants will not be using "labour-intensive production, but rather modern manufacturing fueled by science and technology. This will create new industries and job opportunities throughout the advanced manufacturing value chain," Ma told China Daily, speaking ahead of a conference on science parks and "areas of innovation" in Beijing.

Reindustrialisation through innovation and technology is needed to counter Hong Kong's reliance on finance and real estate, Ma said.

Hong Kong can attract tenants due to its strong technology infrastructure, rule of law and intellectual property protection, Ma told the newspaper.

Hong Kong based technology expert Paul Haswell of Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law.com said: "High rental prices for tenants as well as an infrastructure that is built more for finance companies and retail has meant that whilst there is an abundance of tech innovation in Hong Kong, those innovators can find it hard to find a base from which to build a business."

"Hong Kong’s Science and Technology Park offers excellent space and facilities, as well as attractive terms for tech startups, but those startups find it hard to survive once the time comes to expand beyond the Science Park. As such, any plan to utilise Hong Kong’s warehouse and disused industrial space to build an environment where technology business should be encouraged," Haswell said.