To further support local enterprises to rise up to the challenges facing Hong Kong’s economy, the 2019-20 Budget proposed to inject HK$1 billion into the BUD Fund and to extend the geographical scope of the BUD Fund to include all economies with which Hong Kong has signed Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), now and in future, i.e. to launch the BUD "FTA Programme" (subsuming thereunder the "ASEAN Programme") in addition to the "Mainland Programme". The Finance Committee of the Legislative Council approved the enhancement proposal and funding injection of HK$2 billion (including the HKD$1 billion injection announced by the Financial Secretary in August 2019 for enhancing the Mainland Programme) in December 2019.
To support enterprises in developing more diversified markets, the Government has further injected HK$1.5 billion into the BUD Fund in April 2021 and rolled out enhancement measures in phases since July 2021.
With effect from March 3, 2024, the BUD Fund "FTA and IPPA Programme" covers applications for undertaking projects to develop the markets of the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam), Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgo-Luxembourg Economic Union, Canada, Chile, Denmark, the four member states of the European Free Trade Association member states (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Macao, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, Türkiye, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom. i.e. 38 economies in total.
Eligible Hong Kong enterprises can submit applications to carry out projects for branding, upgrading and/or development sales in the FTA and/or IPPA markets. Some examples that fall within the scope of the FTA and/or IPPA Programme are listed as follow:
Upgrading & Restructuring
Brand Strategy, Brand Building, Positioning and identity, Brand Equity Research, Brand Promotion, and etc.
New Product Design, Adoption of Advanced Technology, Management and Logistics System Upgrading, Manufacturing Automation, and etc.
Marketing Strategy and Research, Sales Strategic Planning, Sales Channel Establishment and Management, Advertisements, Promotion of Product(s)/Service(s) and etc.
Important notes to applicants
The BUD Fund Implementer (The Implementer) has not appointed or designated any consultancy companies or organizations to provide any fee charging services in relation to the BUD fund (including but not limited to assisting the enterprises to submit applications, formulation of the Holistic Business Plans and implementation of approved projects).
The Implementer has not recognized or endorsed the service quality and capability of any consultant/ company which had assisted the funded enterprises to formulate the business plan / implement the funded projects. Any consultancy companies or organizations claiming to be approved or designated by the Implementer for promoting or soliciting business are misleading and making misrepresentation, the applicants should report the cases to the Implementer for following up and taking appropriate actions.
It is the responsibility of an applicant enterprise to complete an application form timely and truthfully and to provide all supporting documents. Inaccurate and incomplete information may affect the processing of the application. Any misrepresentation or omission of information may lead to rejection of the application and/or full recovery by The Secretariat of any grant which has been awarded. It is an offence in law to obtain property/pecuniary advantage by deception or assisting persons to obtain property/pecuniary advantage. Any person who does so may be liable to legal proceedings.