For foreigners seeking new horizons, Hong Kong boasts numerous attractions. With low taxation, an English-speaking population, and efficient transportation and infrastructure, the city welcomes new residents and makes settling in simple. Offering excellent career and business opportunities, as well as a wealth of social and leisure options - brilliant restaurants and nightlife, culture aplenty, and myriad outdoor activities - Hong Kong is a great place to live and work. Asia's world city is also the ideal jumping-off point for travel in the region. In this series, we speak with expats from across the globe who have made Hong Kong their home, and discover the unique attributes that make this city so appealing to newcomers.
Bertrand Meylan is the CEO of the Asian distributor for two highly respected, independent Swiss watchmakers. He initially came to Hong Kong working for a large luxury watch brand back in 2008, and since 2010, has focused on developing his own business. "When I first arrived here almost 10 years ago, the China market was really starting to open up," Bertrand says. "Being in Hong Kong is the perfect base for exploring the opportunities in this market and Mainland China, and right across Asia."
He says though there are certain cultural and language barriers to doing business with Mainland companies, Hong Kong acts as a 'bridge' to China, helping overcome these issues. According to Bertrand, Hong Kong is truly the ideal base for businesspeople operating in Asia. "Everything in Hong Kong is made for people like me to be able to do business, and to have a good life in parallel with that. There aren't many places that are as oriented to making it so convenient. All the laws, structures, infrastructure, and the mentality of the people—everything goes fast, because people are used to there being no barriers to building up a business in Hong Kong."