18 April 2019

Emerging markets to drive HK corporate growth, AMEX says

About half of mid-sized companies in Hong Kong expect growth to come from China and other emerging markets in 2014, a survey of business momentum shows. The other half says it will come from developed economies.

The Hong Kong Business Momentum Survey was conducted by independent global information and benchmarking company Nielsen from Aug. 5 to 26. It was released by American Express Monday.

The survey polled 81 senior financial executives of medium-sized companies with annual turnover of HK$150 million (US$19.35 million) to HK$1.2 billion across various industries including import and export, manufacturing, wholesale and retail.

Twenty-three percent of the respondents said Hong Kong’s domestic market will bring them the most revenue.

China, India and Russia are the top three developing countries from which the companies expect business growth to come. The same percentage picked the United States, Germany and Britain as potential growth drivers this year.

A majority said they expect flat economic growth and many see business opportunities from a gradual economic recovery in the global economy being offset by rising costs, primarily from the China market.

On the other hand, 20 percent of the finance executives said they are optimistic about a substantial or modest economic expansion in Hong Kong. Twenty-one percent expect a contraction in the coming year.

The top challenges for Hong Kong mid-sized enterprises are labor cost, China’s economy and currency and interest rate volatility.

“Optimizing cash flow continues to be the number one opportunity they see on cost containment,” said Jacinta Sheahan, American Express vice president and general manager for global corporate payments in Hong Kong and Taiwan. 

“The ability to control employee spending is the second most important activity they see for managing cost.”

– Contact the reporter at [email protected]



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