OASES strategic enterprise partner AstraZeneca holds Plaques Unveiling Ceremony for establishment of AstraZeneca R&D Centre and iCampus in Hong Kong (with photos)

     As a strategic enterprise partner of the Office for Attracting Strategic Enterprises (OASES), biopharmaceutical enterprise AstraZeneca from the United Kingdom is setting up the AstraZeneca R&D Centre and the Hong Kong iCampus in Hong Kong. The Financial Secretary, Mr Paul Chan, and representatives of AstraZeneca jointly witnessed the Plaques Unveiling Ceremony at the Central Government Offices today (November 24).
     The AstraZeneca R&D Centre in Hong Kong will focus on research and development of medicines in such key areas as cell therapy and gene therapy. The Hong Kong iCampus is an incubation platform, which assists in the business expansion of start-ups in related areas, and engages in collaboration with Hong Kong universities, scientific research institutions, innovation and technology (I&T) parks, etc. These will help promote the innovative research of medicines in key therapy areas and expand the life and health technology ecosystem in Hong Kong.
     AstraZeneca also organised a group of about 80 Mainland pharmaceutical and biotechnology enterprises to come and visit Hong Kong, comprising large-scale listed enterprises and start-ups engaging in pioneering pharmaceutical technologies, which included AstraZeneca's upstream, midstream and downstream partners.
     Delivering his speech at the ceremony, Mr Chan said that the establishment of the AstraZeneca R&D Centre in Hong Kong can reinforce the frontier research of distinguished medical research institutions, experts and scholars of Hong Kong and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area to create new momentum for pharmaceutical research and development in the region. Meanwhile, the establishment of iCampus will bring together relevant start-ups to build a more vibrant medical innovation ecosystem.
     He said that Hong Kong is developing into an international I&T centre with the country's staunch support. Hong Kong enjoys five advantages in developing the life and health technology industry, namely the institutional advantage of "one country, two systems", a robust pool of talent, the fundraising advantage as an international financial centre, the policy advantage of the Government in promoting the development of medical and pharmaceutical industries, and a diversified and quality lifestyle. Mr Chan said that Hong Kong is fully capable of becoming a world-class life and health technology cluster. Pharmaceutical enterprises around the globe are welcome to leverage Hong Kong's advantages to expand their businesses.
     OASES will continue to follow up on these 80 start-ups and provide one-stop services in setting up their businesses in Hong Kong. After the unveiling ceremony, the Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry, Professor Sun Dong, and the Permanent Secretary for Health, Mr Thomas Chan, introduced to these enterprises the Hong Kong I&T Development Blueprint and the development situation and advantages of I&T and medical services in Hong Kong, as well as the policy initiatives of developing Hong Kong into a health and medical innovation hub as announce in this year's Policy Address by the Chief Executive. During their stay in Hong Kong, these enterprises will also visit the Hong Kong Science Park and medical institutions, and participate in thematic seminars.

     Since its establishment in December last year, OASES has met with representatives from nearly 300 enterprises. Among them, about 30 strategic enterprise partners will set up businesses or increase their business scale in Hong Kong, investing a total of more than $30 billion in Hong Kong and creating about 10 000 jobs in the coming few years. These strategic enterprise partners will bring together upstream, midstream and downstream enterprises in related industries and promote the robust development of related industries in Hong Kong. 

Ends/Friday, November 24, 2023
Issued at HKT 18:12