New research and innovations in Hong Kong and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) are injecting new momentum and creating new opportunities for the regional and global healthcare and medical sectors, as highlighted in the two-day Asia Summit on Global Health (ASGH). The second ASGH and the physical element of the 13th edition of the HKTDC Hong Kong International Healthcare Fair concluded successfully today.
As the flagship events of the first International Healthcare Week initiated by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the summit and fair attracted close to 30,000 online and physical participants from 68 countries and regions. More than 280 one-on-one Deal Flow Matchmaking sessions and 600 business meetings have also been arranged to assist participants in seizing business possibilities. Riding on this year’s success, the HKTDC plans to expand International Healthcare Week in May 2023. In addition to forums and exhibitions, it plans to include more healthcare and medical-related activities to strengthen Hong Kong’s position as a leading hub in this globally important industry.
Dr Peter K N Lam, Chairman of the HKTDC, said, “The importance of the medical and healthcare sector to the global economy cannot be overstated, especially during the past three years. As markets across the world gradually recover from the fallout of the pandemic, the health crisis needs to be tackled in tandem. This can only be achieved through collaboration. The pandemic knows no borders and collaboration should not either. It is vital that diverse sectors and players come together and share insights and practical solutions to ensure better efficiency and sustainability in healthcare for the world.”
Shaping the Future of Global Health
The ASGH is co-organised by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and the HKTDC to help the industry build connections, create business opportunities and highlight the advantages of Hong Kong’s healthcare and medical industries in scientific research, investment and financing as well as its trading platforms.
The Summit featured more than 80 speakers, including healthcare officials and members from international organisations, scientists and medical experts, investors, business leaders, financial specialists and service providers. They shared their insights on a wide range of topics, ranging from healthcare development in Mainland China, the challenges of Ebola and COVID-19, the impact of GBA’s innovation and the role of Hong Kong as both a fundraising and innovation hub. Participants also were given updates about new trends, such as the application of robotics and ethics of artificial intelligence (AI), ESG in healthcare and global challenge of mental health.
At the fireside chat on the first day of the summit, Prof Peter Piot, Chief Scientific Advisor Epidemics and Special Advisor to the President of the European Commission and co-discoverer of the Ebola virus in 1976, shared his views on the challenges in creating a more sustainable future for global health and Asia’s contribution to global health in the years to come.
Prof Piot said: “COVID has definitely been a wake-up call to the importance of developing a sustainable and equitable healthcare system. The reality is that we are very likely entering an era of pandemics, and we must be better prepared. We must also assist the least developed countries, such as [those in] Africa and Southeast Asia, in manufacturing vaccines and other essential medications and developing the infrastructure they need to be ready for the next pandemic. I see this as a collective effort that would benefit the whole world; and everyone, including governments, businesses, civil society and individuals, should contribute in their own way.”
Bring New Perspectives to Universal Issues
On the first day of the Summit, Secretary for Health Prof Lo Chung-mau remarked during the panel discussion titled “The Next Development of China’s Healthcare Sector” that China had made remarkable progress in healthcare, especially in transforming treatment-oriented and hospital-based services to community-based services. Dr Donald Li, Chairman of the Elderly Commission who chaired the panel, said the high demand for healthcare services in the GBA has created many new opportunities for business and healthcare professionals.
Addressing the audience of a panel discussion titled “How Innovation in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Area Reshapes Global Healthcare”, speakers shared that the GBA, Shenzhen in particular, would be a new base for innovation and research amid the boom of university lab research in the city.
Prof Michael Marmot, Director of the Institute of Health Equity of Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at University College London, pointed out at the thematic session titled “Adding Health to ESG: How Can Businesses Impact Health Equity?” that contribution of business and industry to healthcare was crucial. “This is because they have the capacity to improve the health and well-being of employees and customers through goods and services, whilst also making a positive impact on the communities they serve.”
Deal Flow Matchmarking to Facilitate Exchange and Collaboration
The Deal Flow Matchmaking on the first day connected funders from around the world with projects encompassing life sciences, medical apparatus and medicine, digital health, community health and more, with a total of 280 one-on-one meetings scheduled, of which 156 were successfully held on-site.
The hybrid InnoHealth Showcase and exhibition area featured more than 180 projects and solutions from healthcare-related innovative technology enterprises, connecting them with investors around the world as well as potential business partners. A number of biotechnology and healthcare start-ups also took advantage of the Business of Healthcare Advisory Zone, receiving a full range of professional advice from investors and industry experts.
PanopticAI, one of the winners of HKTDC’s Start-up Express 2021, was one example of successful business matching at the Summit. The company uses patented AI and algorithm to instantly obtain health data, such as heart rate, breathing rate, blood pressure and stress index of subjects through ordinary lenses. They attended ASGH in the hope to expand to the GBA and Southeast Asia. With the support of the HKTDC, PanopticAI signed an MOU with Gleneagles Hospital Hong Kong on the first day of the Summit to further apply its research results in Hong Kong hospitals to help more people in needed.
Dr Yuanyuan Yu, Assistant Professor at the School of Chinese Medicine of Hong Kong Baptist University commended the Summit’s vibrant atmosphere and she was impressed by the synergy International Healthcare Week provided. The university delegation was able to meet with a lot of potential investors, business partners and academia collaborators and they anticipate further project discussions.
Medical Fair Provides One-stop Platform for Industry Buyers and Professionals
The 13th Hong Kong International Medical and Healthcare Fair adopted the HKTDC’s new EXHIBITION+ hybrid model. Its three-day physical exhibition came to a successful close today, while the Click2Match platform that provides smart business matching to help build connections between exhibitors, buyers and industry professionals worldwide will remain active until 18 November.
The fair brought together more than 300 exhibitors from different countries and regions to feature a range of the latest medical technologies and equipment, healthcare and beauty products, healthcare solutions and related services, drawing many buyers and industry professionals to source both on-site and online.
Kenny Lam, Sales Manager of SWS Limited, a local exhibitor that offers textile management solutions for smart hospitals, said the Medical Fair provided a valuable platform for the company to showcase its automated uniform dispensing unit and respond to buyers’ enquiries. He added: “Government officials and buyers from public and private hospitals are very interested in this system after watching our on-site demonstrations. Their feedback is overwhelming!” Additionally, they said they would support this kind of locally invented systems.
Ketkanok Sasibavronyod, Senior Business Development Manager of Thailand’s leading medical device distributor BJC Healthcare Company Limited, travelled to Hong Kong for the Medical Fair to source telemedicine solutions, wearables for health monitoring, medical equipment and elderly care products. She stated: “HKTDC’s Click2Match smart business matching service is very useful. Thanks to it, I found and scheduled to meet in-person with two potential suppliers of elderly care equipment, VR training solutions for elderly rehabilitation and VR therapy solutions. The fair is a good place for me to see new trends in medical equipment too!”
The Medical Fair is co-organised by the Hong Kong Medical and Healthcare Device Industries Association (HKMHDIA). During the show, more than 10 content-rich events were held, including the highlighted HKMHDIA MedTech Forum 2022, with industry professionals keen to participate. Industry players can watch videos of the forum through the fair website.
In addition to the two highlight events, the first International Healthcare Week also featured other related events, including the Gerontech and Innovation Expo cum Summit 2022, the Hong Kong Urological Association 27th Annual Scientific Meeting and the Hong Kong International Optometric Symposium.
– International Healthcare Week: https://internationalhealthcareweek.hktdc.com/en
– Asia Summit On Global Health: https://www.asiasummitglobalhealth.com/conference/asgh/en
– Hong Kong International Medical and Healthcare Fair: https://www.hktdc.com/event/hkmedicalfair/en
– Photo download: https://bit.ly/3UwJjMI
The Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) is a statutory body established in 1966 to promote, assist and develop Hong Kong’s trade. With 50 offices globally, including 13 in Mainland China, the HKTDC promotes Hong Kong as a two-way global investment and business hub. The HKTDC organises international exhibitions, conferences and business missions to create business opportunities for companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in the mainland and international markets. The HKTDC also provides up-to-date market insights and product information via research reports and digital news channels. For more information, please visit: www.hktdc.com/aboutus. Follow us on Twitter @hktdc and LinkedIn
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