Roles and Objectives of the
Trade and Industry Bureau (TIB)

TIB ' s work covers the following main areas -

  1. bilateral and multilateral trade;

  2. support for industry;

  3. intellectual property and consumer protection;

  4. trade controls of textiles, strategic commodities and reserved commodities

  5. regional and multilateral economic cooperation;

  6. overseas offices; and

  7. electronic data interchange.

2. TIB also -

  1. takes policy and housekeeping responsibility for the Trade Department, Industry Department, Customs and Excise Department, Intellectual Property Department and ten Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices overseas 1 ; and

  2. has policy responsibilities for the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, Hong Kong Productivity Council, Consumer Council, Hong Kong Export Credit Insurance Corporation, Hong Kong Industrial Estates Corporation, Hong Kong Industrial Technology Centre Corporation and the Community Electronic Trading Service2 .

3.The objectives of the Bureau are to :

  1. secure the freest possible access to overseas markets for the Special Administrative Region ' s goods and services, and a stable, rule-based global trading regime for our traders and investors;

  2. promote the Special Administrative Region (SAR) as a world-class manufacturing and services centre and enhance the competitiveness of the manufacturing and services industries by providing promotional, infrastructural and other support services;

  3. develop a comprehensive, independent and internationally accepted framework to protect intellectual property rights which will help promote trade, investment, and technological innovation and exchange; and

  4. protect and promote the legitimate interests of domestic producers, traders and consumers through healthy competition, discouraging unfair business practices and providing consumers with effective channels to redress their complaints.

4. The responsibilities of the Bureau are to :

  1. formulate negotiating positions and participate in multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations;

  2. institute measures and arrangements to facilitate external trade;

  3. formulate and implement policies on trade promotion;

  4. promote the SAR ' s trading and commercial interests overseas and in multilateral and regional trade organizations;

  5. formulate and implement policies supporting the further development of the manufacturing and services sectors and to promote inward investment and technology development;

  6. develop and enforce a sound intellectual property protection regime consistent with internationally accepted arrangements; and

  7. formulate policies to enhance consumer protection and promote competition.

1--For a description of the functions of these departments, please see the Annex.

2--For a description of these organizations and services, please see the Annex.

Trade and Industry Bureau
August 1997


Departments and Statutory Bodies under TIB ' s Purview

  • The Trade Department is TIB ' s executive arm on trade matters. It implements trade policies and multilateral and bilateral trade agreements by handling such matters as certificates of origin, export and import licensing including textiles, and strategic and reserved commodities. Besides, working with the 10 overseas Economic and Trade Offices, the department is also responsible for conducting bilateral and multilateral commercial relations, including participation in various multilateral and regional trade fora, trade negotiations, and the collection and dissemination of trade information.

  • The Industry Department is responsible for the implementation of the Government ' s support policy for the manufacturing and services sectors. Services provided by the department include quality services, promotion of inward direct investment, technology support, infrastructure support and development support. In addition, it oversees and co-ordinates the work of the Investment Promotion Units in seven Economic and Trade Offices overseas.

  • The Customs and Excise Department is responsible to TIB for the enforcement of the various trade controls and import and export control systems operating in the SAR, including controls on textiles and strategic commodities. The department is also responsible for enforcing laws to protect copyright, trade descriptions and trade marks, as well as consumer protection legislation relating to weights and measures, toys and children ' s products safety, consumer goods safety, and precious metals marking orders.

  • The functions of the Intellectual Property Department are three-fold : establishment of a local intellectual property rights regime in line with prevailing international standards; provision of quality services on patent, trademark and designs registration; and promotion of the public awareness of and respect for intellectual property rights within the community.

  • The functions of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices are three-fold : promotion of bilateral commercial relations between the SAR and the host country; promotion of investment in the SAR by businessmen in the host country; and conduct of public relations to promote better understanding of the SAR as a responsible and reliable trading partner. In addition, the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Geneva is the office of the SAR ' s permanent representative to the World Trade Organization.

  • The Hong Kong Trade Development Council is a statutory organization tasked with the promotion of Hong Kong ' s exports, of both goods and services, overseas.

  • The Hong Kong Productivity Council is a statutory body to promote the productivity of industry and to encourage efficient utilization of resources. It is the Government ' s principal agent for the delivery of productivity enhancement services. The council provides a variety of training programmes, industrial and management consultancies and technical support services to both manufacturing and services sectors.

  • The Consumer Council is a statutory body for protecting and promoting the interests of consumers of goods, services and immovable property. The Council has seven functional divisions, covering complaints and advice; information and publication; legal affairs; research and testing; survey; trade practices; and administration.
  • The Hong Kong Export Credit Insurance Corporation is a statutory organization tasked with the provision of credit insurance for Hong Kong ' s exporters.

  • The Hong Kong Industrial Estates Corporation is a statutory body to develop and manage industrial estates in the SAR. It offers serviced land, at cost, on its industrial estates to companies with new and improved technologies and processes which cannot operate in multi-storey factory buildings.

  • The Hong Kong Industrial Technology Centre Corporation is a statutory body to promote technological innovations and application of new technologies in the SAR by provision of incubation facilities and accommodation for technology-based businesses, technology-related services, and research and development support services.

  • The objective of the Community Electronic Trading Service is to adopt electronic data interchange and other techniques to improve the facilitation of international trade for the Hong Kong trading community, thereby furthering the economic interests of Hong Kong.