15 February 2022, Hong Kong – The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), the world’s leading and largest professional body for management accountants, has sent its recommendations to the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region for the upcoming Budget.
The recommendations focus on investment in skills and innovation to drive productivity and support long-term growth in Hong Kong. They were set out in a letter sent to Mr. Paul Chan, Financial Secretary of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
Paulus Chau, Director – Hong Kong and Emerging markets at the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, representing AICPA & CIMA, said:
“The COVID pandemic has accelerated changes in the skills being demanded by economies. We recommend the upcoming budget should provide greater investment in developing the skills of the Hong Kong workforce so it can embrace innovation, drive growth and compete on the world stage.”
CIMA’s proposals for the upcoming Budget include:
- Introduction of skilled and professional apprenticeships in Hong Kong, which have proved to be valuable resources for companies, school leavers and graduates to access the labour market in countries such as the United Kingdom and the United States.
- Encouraging life-long learning through continuous professional development to ensure that they remain competitive and employable in a digital business world and have the right skills to support the Hong Kong economy as it recovers from the pandemic.
- Revise the self-education tax deduction limits to go beyond 100,000 Hong Kong dollars (HKD) to encourage Hong Kong residents to invest in upskilling and reskilling themselves and support further economic growth.
- Introducing tax incentives for companies investing in employee retention and skills development to promote both staff and job retention in Hong Kong.
- Supporting and promoting reskilling and upskilling in key areas such as science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), digital, and sustainability to ensure that Hong Kong businesses have access to the right talent and have the skills they need to drive their business forward now and in the future.
- Extending access to existing R&D schemes to small and medium businesses (SMEs) to help them kickstart their digital transformation process.