Unit: USD thousands
Total Market Size (Hardware only)
Total Local Production
Imports from the U.S.
Exchange Rate: 1 USD
Total Market Size = (Total Local Production + Total Imports) – (Total Exports)
Hong Kong’s IT equipment (computer and parts) imports in 2015 dropped 5.3% to US$ 48.6 billion. The value of U.S. IT equipment exports to Hong Kong in 2015 was US$ 1.13 billion, a 16% decrease over 2014, representing 2.5% of Hong Kong’s total IT imports. Since China is the largest export market for Hong Kong’s IT equipment, absorbing over two-thirds of the total exports. The decrease in imports/exports of ICT products in 2015 was clearly reflected as a result of China’s slow-down in demand.
Hong Kong IT Spending Unit: USD thousands
Total IT Spending
Although there are no Hong Kong government official statistics on software and IT services, Business Monitor International (BMI) estimated that Hong Kong’s total IT spending in 2015 was US$4.7 billion, representing a drop of 4.7% from 2015. According to BMI’s analysis, a sharp spending decline of 22.5% in the hardware market dragged the overall IT spending down in 2015. The volatility in the hardware market was the result of the boom and subsequent slowdown in the tablet market as well as concentrated desktop and notebook replacement demand in 2014.
The hardware market, however, is expected to return to a stable growth of 2.7% in 2016, derived from household income growth and replacement sales. In contrast to the hardware market, spending in software and services in 2015 have grown 3.5% and 4.7%, respectively, driven mainly by cloud computing solutions. BMI also forecasts IT spending in Hong Kong will reach $4.9 billion in 2016, representing a growth of 4.2% from 2015.
Sub-Sector Best Prospects
BMI estimated that cloud computing spending in Hong Kong grew 35% in 2015 to reach US$200 million. Hong Kong is a leading market in terms of cloud adoption rates, penetration of advanced solutions, and a regional hub for the provision of cloud services. In a recent report published by the Asia Cloud Computing Association, Hong Kong was named the most prepared APAC location in rolling out cloud computing, scoring high in the index of addressing data privacy issues, connectivity and data center risk management. The Hong Kong Government is also a cloud computing advocate, its GovCloud launched in December 2013 supports about 30 government bureaus and departments in rolling out their common e-government services. BMI estimated that the cloud computing market will continue to expand rapidly with a forecast of 24% compound annual growth rate from 2016 to 2020, reaching a value of US$600 million.
The Hong Kong data center market is a springboard in the sense that international service providers that want to serve China often start in Hong Kong, which does not have requirements like China’s Internet Data Center License, uncertainty about data privacy, and content screening. It is estimated that data center revenue reached US$616 million in 2015, and the market is projected to grow by 15% in 2016, and reaching US$1.39 million by 2020. The Hong Kong Government has been promoting Hong Kong as a prime location for datacenters in Asia Pacific. The plan is part of the government’s Digital 21 Strategy, with the creation of the Data Center Facilitation Unit, to provide one-stop helpdesk service to assist data center operators interested in setting up data centers in Hong Kong. The Unit will liaise with other government departments on matters such as statutory approval processes, compliance requirements or procedures. The government has also created incentives such as issuing waivers for change of use of old industrial buildings into datacenters and setting aside land in satellite towns for high-tier datacenters. This makes Hong Kong one of the world’s most lucrative markets for data center service providers.
In order to maintain its status as Asian financial hub, the Hong Kong Government has announced in its 2016 Fiscal budget that it will allocate US$ 2 billion investment into the financial technology (fintech) sector. Under the proposal, a dedicated team, under Invest Hong Kong, will be set up to organize international events and encourage fintech start-ups, investors and R&D institutions to set up in Hong Kong. Additionally, the Government also announced that Cyberport (Hong Kong’s IT flagship) will provide 3,000 square meters of co-working space to fintech businesses and support 150 fintech startups over the next five years. This is a great opportunity for U.S. fintech companies who are interested in setting up in Hong Kong.
Internet of Things (IoT):
Hong Kong, with a world-class IT network infrastructure and well-developed ICT applications, has attained considerable achievements in the world of Smart City. In 2013, Forbes named Hong Kong among the world’s top tech capitals to watch after Silicon Valley and New York. Hong Kong also stood 4th in the ranking of the ten smartest Asia-Pacific cities published by Boyd Cohen in 2013. Cohen remarked that Hong Kong scored the highest in his ranking for smart mobility because of the prevalence of public transport and the ubiquitous use of electronic payments. A good example is the City’s Octopus Card, which is usable on almost all public transport and accepted by more than 13,000 retail outlets on Hong Kong, with over 13 million transactions per day. The HKSAR Government attaches great importance to smart city development, such can be seen by the establishment of the “Innovation and Technology Bureau (ITB)” in November of 2015, with the mission of formulating holistic policies relating to innovation and technology; strengthening co-ordination among the Government, industry, academia and research sectors; and expediting the development of innovation, technology and related industries in Hong Kong. Hong Kong could be a key regional location for the development of emerging technologies such as IoT and big data analytics.
Major Trade Shows and Events:
Hong Kong IT Fest
Dates: April, 2017
Description: a list of annual ICT events in April
Information and Software Industry Association
Contact: Kong Chi Wing, Chairman
Tel: (852) 2622-2867
Fax: (852) 2622-2731
Hong Kong Information Technology Federation Ltd
Contact: Erwin Huang, President
Tel: (852) 3101-8197
Fax: (852) 3007-4728
Hong Kong Wireless Technology Industry Association Ltd.
Contact: Kenny Yiu, Chairman
Tel: (852) 2370-3130
Fax: (852) 8208-8782
Hong Kong Internet Service Providers Association
Contact: Lento Yip, Chairman
Tel: (852) 8201-1109
Fax: (852) 3011-3108
ICT Journals in Hong Kong:
For more information about this industry sector, please contact U.S. Commercial Service:
Ms. Fanny Chau, Commercial Specialist
Tel: (852) 2521-3721
Fax: (852) 2845-9800
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