Secretary for Innovation, Technology & Industry Prof Sun Dong today attended VivaTech 2024 in Paris, France, giving the attendees an update on Hong Kong's ever-growing startup scene.
In his keynote speech at a seminar themed "How Global Startups Succeed in Asia through Hong Kong's Innovation Ecosystem", he pointed out that Hong Kong values the potential and contributions of startups and that the city is one of the best destinations for global startups to thrive and flourish.
Prof Sun noted that the greatest asset of Hong Kong's innovation and technology (I&T) development is its strong research capability.
What’s more, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government supports global startups with a readily available source of research and development capabilities, knowledge and talent, as well as a vibrant I&T culture and atmosphere.
He stated that it is also committed to providing comprehensive support to startups at different stages of their development.
“The two I&T flagships in Hong Kong, namely the Science Park and Cyberport, play a vital role in nurturing and supporting startups in the city through various entrepreneurship schemes and incubation programmes, providing infrastructure, technical and funding support for their startups.”
Prof Sun highlighted that Hong Kong is well positioned to be the bridge connecting East and West, as the city enjoys the dual advantages under "one country, two systems" and strategic location on the doorstep of Mainland China.
Noting that a solid industry chain and supply chain are essential for startups, he emphasised that setting up business in Hong Kong gives startups and enterprises much more than just a single market, but an ideal gateway to the gigantic market in the entire Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA), Mainland China and Asia with boundless opportunities.
The prospects and synergies of the GBA will be unlimited with a stable supply of talent and materials.
Prof Sun also toured the Hong Kong Pavilion at the VivaTech, which showcases Hong Kong's vibrant startup and technology ecosystem and provides information on the unparalleled advantages the city offers for global startups.
Apart from visiting the pavilion set up by Japan, which is the "Country of the Year", as well as pavilions set up by institutions such as Centre national de la recherche scientifique and Région Sud of France, he had brief exchanges with representatives of some exhibitors to learn more about their innovative solutions.
Prof Sun then attended a networking reception to exchange views on the development and collaboration of I&T with local leaders of the I&T industry, entrepreneurs, influencers and investors.
Yesterday, Prof Sun toured the Institut Pasteur and visited its laboratories to gain an understanding of the institute's research areas and advanced research equipment, as well as programmes to accelerate the development potential of research discoveries and promote the creation of startups.
The Institut Pasteur is an internationally-renowned private and non-profit infectious disease research institute which co-operated with the University of Hong Kong through InnoHK clusters to establish the Centre for Immunology & Infection in 2020 to use novel technology platforms for biomarker discovery and the development of a new vaccine and therapeutic strategies.
Prof Sun stressed that international collaboration and talent development are key components under InnoHK.

The Hong Kong SAR Government strongly encourages strengthening academic exchanges to foster knowledge sharing, enhance research capabilities and promote scientific advancements for the benefit of the I&T development in both Hong Kong and France, he added.


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