What could the 2017/18 HK budget hold for SMEs?

I’ll be doing a two part piece – a before and after look at the upcoming 2017/18 HK budget.  

The budget speech will be delivered on 22 Feb 2017, however unknown to most, there was a pre-amble in the form of a consultation exercise by the HK government to solicit proposals and views from the public on the direction/focus of the budget.   Searchable proposals were submitted by large accounting firms, several chambers of commerce and the HKICPA – thrilling reading material if you are interested (see the links below).   For those of you who prefer a lighter read, I found two interesting elements from the proposals urging the HK government to:

  • Implement the initiative announced in the 2016/17 budget to transform HK into a “smart city”
  • Reduce tax for both companies and individuals

According to PwC, they expect the fiscal reserves of the HKSAR government “will amount to HK$913 billion by the end of March 2017, equivalent to 23 months of total Government expenditure”.   That’s a nice amount to have for a rainy day.   There’s a lot that could be done with that kind of financial backing in our city – along from welcome tax relief and random initiatives that do not correlate with what SMEs actually need to grow, innovate and flourish, it should provide sufficient confidence to our government for bold, impactful changes to be made in areas including:

  • Banking/payments infrastructure for SME commerce
  • Attracting and retaining investment in HK
  • Incentivise local “grass-roots” innovation to encourage positive social and community impact

Let’s see what emerges later this month.


No not you, behind you …yes you little guy (well small to medium guy).

Get on Cloud 9
Get your head in the Cloud


… there are a plethora of cheesy cloud sayings that could be employed here (and let’s be honest they have all been used in the past) in an attempt to wave pom poms for the benefits of Cloud computing.


Much, heaps, lots and then some has been written about the benefits of Cloud computing.


Cost effectiveness


…. cue wind up music. I’m bored. It’s a no brainer.


However, the take up of a comprehensive cloud infrastructure by small and medium businesses is nowhere near what it could be or should be. Gone are the days where a slick, accessible anywhere infrastructure is only within the reach of the top end of town.


While large corporations have had means to develop custom built interfaces for a long time, this no longer a dream for the chubby guy with the deep pockets.


Small to medium guy in the back this song is for you.







In parallel to the emergence of the SaaS (software as a service) concept, the software providers themselves have really lifted their game not only in functionality but particularly in terms of how the individual software chats to its friends.


No small business can afford unnecessary time and costs to relay information from one system to another. Information is needed FAST to make good decisions and meet customer needs


Successful businesses keep costs down in tough times and in good times.
Successful businesses lay down good foundations to position them to scale up FAST when the time is right.
Successful businesses have current information at hand to remain agile in decision making.
Successful businesses exceed customer expectations …  and let’s be honest, in this day and age expectations are high.


Critical to achieving all of these success factors is a quality, integrated infrastructure. A mini eco-system where everything takes place on your web browser – e-commerce online sales, real time inventory tracking and logistics and up-to-date financials.  Here’s a taste of what can be done categorised by business needs.


This type of solution, regardless of your size or stage of life cycle, is much more accessible than you think. I hate to rain on your T8 parade, but with an integrated application infrastructure housed in the Cloud, before you know it, you and your staff will have a sophisticated suite of tools available for you to work from anywhere, at any time.


This can be your reality, Check out our website www.cornerstone.hk or Connect at enquiries@cornerstone.hk 


Written by Natasha Donaldson