Is Shenzhen or Hong Kong best for expat entrepreneurs?

Published:  20 Nov at 6 PM
Want to get involved? Become a Featured Expat and take our interview.
Become a Local Expert and contribute articles.
Get in touch today!
Shenzhen is the fastest growing city in the world, but how does it compare with neighbouring Hong Kong? Expats have flocked to Hong Kong to make their fortunes in an exotic environment for decades, but the mainland Chinese city of Shenzhen has overtaken the former British colony by concentrating on the tech boom.

Nowadays, it’s known worldwide as Asia’s Silicon Valley and is breaking the accepted Chinese mould of copying - some say stealing - Western ideas by becoming a hub for innovation on a grand scale. The other, important for start-ups, difference between the two adjacent destinations is the cost of living, with Shenzhen winning out hands down. Hong Kong is one of the most expensive destinations for expat professionals, one reason why everyone on the island is obsessed with becoming successful as it’s the only way to keep food on the table and a roof over your head.

It’s also the reason why entrepreneurs are now heading to Shenzhen to develop their ideas into reality with the help of investors’ seed funding. The mainland city is far cheaper, especially for accommodation, although as it grows more popular the cost of living is steadily rising. The biggest setback for expat entrepreneurs determined to start a business anywhere in China is the slow, filtered internet service when accessing international websites. For Chinese websites it’s super fast, but most expat start-ups need access to the web on a worldwide basis. One way to get round this is to cross the land border into Hong Kong, find the nearest internet café and enjoy amazingly fast connections. I

t’s expected the border crossings between the two mega-cities will become ever more porous over the next few years due to China’s increasing integration into the multinational world and Hong Kong’s cultural blending with mainland Chinese culture. As regards the practicalities of living in Shenzhen, public transportation around the huge city is now easy thanks to 11 subway lines linking all districts, an unending number of Uber for Bikes provisions known as MObike, cheap taxis and buses. There’s no need for a car in Shenzhen.

Another big plus is that, due to the large number of factories now being relocated outside the city, the air is far clearer than in other Chinese cities. For expats who love bustling urban surroundings and are intent on a tech start-up, Shenzhen is the best place in the world right now!
Like this news?

Comments » No published comments just yet for this article...

Feel free to have your say on this item. Go on... be the first!

Tell us Your Thoughts On This Piece:

Your Name *
Email * (not published, needs verification one time only)
  • Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • RSS feed
  • Facebook

Latest Headlines

News Links

News Archive