Residential and commercial buildings are seen from Victoria Peak in Hong Kong, Sept 11, 2017. (BILLY H.C. KWOK / BLOOMBERG)
Hong Kong will be the most effective wealth management center in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area once the Wealth Management Connect scheme is implemented, business accounting firm Grant Thornton said on Tuesday.
The growing number of external asset managers and family offices in Hong Kong will attract mainland ultra-high net worth individuals to set up family offices in the city and offer tremendous growth opportunities for the asset and wealth management industry, making Hong Kong the most effective wealth management center in the Greater Bay Area, according to Eugene Ha, deputy managing partner of Grant Thornton Hong Kong.
The cross-border Wealth Management Connect pilot scheme allows mainland investors from the Greater Bay Area to invest directly and purchase cross-border financial products in Hong Kong
As the most dynamic region in the country, the Greater Bay Area has a population of 70 million. The launch of Wealth Management Connect will further expand the market for Hong Kong’s wealth management industry and strengthen Hong Kong’s position as an international financial center and a global hub for offshore renminbi business, Ha added.
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The cross-border WMC pilot scheme allows mainland investors from the Greater Bay Area to invest directly and purchase cross-border financial products in Hong Kong, which is expected to help facilitate the cross-border flow and use of RMB in the Greater Bay Area, said Angie Yim, advisory senior manager of Grant Thornton Hong Kong.
The first batch of southbound WMC will include simple, low-risk financial products, but it is believed that this will not affect the product attractiveness to mainland investors, as WMC is an opportunity for mainland investors to invest overseas, and as more types of financial products will be introduced to meet the growing demand of investors.
However, there are still some impediments to the launch as the pandemic is still unsettled and the mandatory quarantine measures remain in place, and this will affect investors when they need to cross the border to open investment accounts, Yim said.
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WMC can be launched once the pandemic is stable, and is expected to be the next growth area for the wealth management industry in Hong Kong, Yim added.