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Hong Kong to Pay Fintechs to Hire Fintech Professionals; What can Africa learn from this?

In the wake of the Wirecard scandal, global financial hub, Hong Kong, has provided funding for companies to hire one fintech professional and  apply for HK$10,000 subsidy per month.

Companies can hire one fintech professional, apply for HK$10,000 subsidy per month for a year starting 2nd July, 2020.
Candidates must be Hong Kong residents, companies must be registered in city.

Hong Kong has launched a new HK$120 million (US$15.5 million) wage subsidy plan that will encourage companies in the financial sector to hire 1,000 financial technology professionals over the next 12 months.

“FAST aims to create new job opportunities in the fintech sector and enrich Hong Kong’s fintech talent pool to enhance the city’s competitive edge, and reinforce its position as a leading international financial centre,” Hui said. “While fintech will add new opportunities, companies will need to inject new capital to develop new services. It will not be easy for companies to decide to add extra capital amid the current market environment, which is full of uncertainties,” he added.

2018 Hong Kong Fintech Landscape Image credit: InvestHK

This follows a string of government intervention programs to shore up the economy amidst the COVID-19 crisis.

Hong Kong's access to mainland China and proximity to other countries in the region has also worked in its favor. Despite the growing significance of places like Shanghai and Shenzhen as China's financial centers, Hong Kong remains a key gateway connecting mainland China with global financial markets.

Financial services remains key to the economy of Hong Kong that has been plagued by political crisis for a while. The financial services industry accounts for about a fifth of Hong Kong’s gross domestic product and employs about 263,000 workers, according to official data.

Similar to the scenario where aid agencies hire technical assistants to support government agencies; African financial services regulators can adopt this model to support fintechs in Africa as adoption of fintechs grow across the continent. Potential expertise of interest would be legal experts, compliance experts, strategy experts and financial reporting experts.