Hong Kong – March 13, 2017 – The American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (“AmCham”) calls on the HKSAR Government to take a proactive role in incentivizing workplace diversity and promoting inclusion measures that exceed mere compliance, specifically toward the LGBT+ community, to enhance Hong Kong’s competitive edge in the global talent hunt towards a smart economy.
"Diversity and innovation form an inseparable pair. We see growing awareness in the business community, particularly in the financial services field, on workplace diversity because they see the benefits of attracting creative talents for innovating their businesses. The government needs to emphasize the strong business case for Hong Kong to look into practical options to promote workplace inclusivity, and eliminate discrimination in a socially sensible manner," said Chairman Walter Dias.
"The drop of expatriates from the U.S., Britain and Australia by nearly 10% (2015) is an alarming signal for the city to reconsider its talent strategies," Dias added.
The Chamber submitted its views on specific actions to sustain Hong Kong' s ability to attract global talents:
- Expand the work visa program to allow companies to recruit and retain top global talents in the early years of work
- Promote workplace diversity to cultivate an environment of work favorable to creative talents to drive innovative growth
- Promote workplace inclusivity and enhance public education to eliminate discrimination against ethnic minorities and LGBT
- Update Hong Kong's employment law to incorporate international standards and common practices to increase Hong Kong's competitiveness
- Recognize foreign, legally registered same-sex and domestic partnerships and marriages in order to attract foreign talent
Currently, most companies have some form of LGBT inclusion strategy in place in Hong Kong, and many have taken proactive steps to promote LGBT inclusion in the broader community. However, there is a stark deficiency of diversity training programs. According to the Hong Kong LGBT Workplace Inclusion Index 2015, many companies provide diversity training, however only a few companies have comprehensive LGBT-specific training or an LGBT employee network specifically for Hong Kong. Many companies additionally extend certain leave policies, aid with relocation, and assist with applying for prolonged visitor visas for domestic partners.
Hong Kong needs a supportive legislature, enhanced education, and increased promotion to facilitate diversity and inclusion measures in order for it to maintain its status as a competitive hub. Proactive efforts are required to demonstrate a strong commitment to attracting the best and brightest here to work. Efforts could include supporting companies to provide customized planning services for LGBT families, assistance with necessary legal procedures, and comprehensive benefits packages to bring in the right talents that match business needs.
Please contact the following persons for further details or interview arrangement.
For media enquiries:
Agnes Tsang (Ms.)
Queenie Tsui (Ms.)
ABOUT AMCHAM HONG KONG
With close to 1,600 members, the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (AmCham) is one of the largest American Chambers outside the United States, the largest international chamber in Hong Kong, and one of the most dynamic and influential international business organizations in the Asia-Pacific region. AmCham’s mission is to foster commerce among the United States, Hong Kong, and Mainland China; and to enhance Hong Kong's stature as an international business center.