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About the Industry > Industry Profile and Role of the Industry

Industry Profile and Role of the Industry

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Industry Profile

The Census and Statistics Department has provided the latest statistics (2016) on the profile of the testing and certification industry. Some of the key data are reproduced below. The entire set of 2016 data in presentation slides can be downloaded here. The key data from 2009 onwards can also be downloaded from archive.

In 2016, the total business receipts of the private independent establishments in the industry were $14.1 billion. Their economic contribution to Hong Kong’s GDP was $7.3 billion. As for employment, the total number of persons engaged in these private independent establishments was about 13 960.

In the same year, there were about 670 private independent establishments in the industry. The vast majority (around 94% or 630 establishments) of these were small and medium enterprises engaging less than 50 persons. They accounted for 27% of the total persons engaged and 28% of the total business receipts in the industry.

The table below shows the breakdown of the industry's 2016 business receipts by type of services :

Type of Services
(HK$ Mn)
(a) Toys and games 1,899
(b) Textiles, clothing and footwear 1,706
(c) Medical 2,806
(d) Electrical products 1,421
(e) Construction materials 1,125
(f) Others 694
9,652* (68.3%)
Inspection 2,590 (18.3%)
Certification 232 (1.6%)
Others 1,665 (11.8%)
14,138* (100%)

* Figures do not add up to the corresponding subtotal/total figure due to rounding.

Role of the Industry

In additional to its direct economic contribution, the industry also supports the manufacturing, export and other service industries, and is thus an integral part of the overall supply chain.

Locally, the testing and certification industry plays an important role in daily life of the Hong Kong community. For example, medical laboratories provide essential support to medical sector in the diagnosis of illnesses. Private laboratories have been playing an increasing role in supporting the food industry for quality assurance and the Government in testing of food. The construction materials laboratories and inspection bodies also contribute to ensuring the building safety.

In support of Hong Kong’s external trade, the industry has been providing high volume of testing and inspection services for consumer products manufactured in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta Region, in particular toys, electrical and electronic goods, textiles and garments and footwear. The industry also provides quality management system certification service for factories. Through providing assurance to overseas buyers on the quality and safety of products, the industry has played an important part in the economic development of Hong Kong as well as Pearl River Delta Region.

From a wider perspective, the testing and certification industry has also contributed to the development of Hong Kong as a business services centre. Coupled with other advantages including a sound legal system, a business-friendly environment and world class infrastructure, the availability of credible testing and certification services has enhanced attraction for multinational companies to set up buying offices and even regional headquarters in Hong Kong.