Seminar on Supports to Testing & Certification Industry was organized by Hong Kong Council for Testing and Certification (HKCTC), Hong Kong Accreditation Service (HKAS), as well as, Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks (HKSTP) on 16 September 2011. HKSQ is one of supporting organizations.
The first speaker was Prof. Pak-chung Ching (Chairman of HKCTC) and his topic entitled "Updates on the Work of HKCTC". Prof. Ching introduced the industry Profile that the Employment, Business Receipts and Value-added to GDP were found to be increased from 2008 to 2009 by 1.5%, 10% and 13%, respectively.
Then Prof. Ching mentioned the three-year development plan in Testing and Certification (T&C) industry. One of improvements was to increase manpower in HKAS (upto 48% from April 2010 to Jun 2011). Some new accreditation services were launched below:
- Authentication of Chinese medicines by microscopic examination and physiochemical methods,
- Certification of food safety management system - ISO 22000, and
- Radiation measurement for food and other products.
In addition, accredited organization increased 6.4% (upto 217) from Apr 2010 to Sep 2011.
Four production factors namely Manpower, Technology, Capital and Land were reported. For manpower, many seminars/workshops/short courses were organized by HKCTC, HKAS, Government Laboratory, HKPC and VTC. For Technology, Innovation Technology Fund (ITF) was encouraged and promoted through different seminars and HKAS Newsletters. Government Laboratory supported some schemes in which Proficiency Testing Schemes Provider and Reference Materials Producer were accredited. For Capital, seminar and tour in HKPC and Science Park to promote the use of shared equipment for accreditation were performed. For Land, HKCTC provided views to Planning Department on Lok Ma Chau Loop Development.
Four selected Trades were selected to promote testing and certification. There were Chinese Medicine (CM), Construction Materials, Food and Jewellery.
For Chinese Medicines, HKCTC and HKAS would facilitate laboratories to obtain accreditation for audhentication of Chinese herbal medicines based on Hong Kong Chinese Materia Medica Stantards; and explore Product Certification Scheme for Chinese Medicine Products. (My expectation is a Government/NGO technical body to work as a leader for CM development such as HKJCICM.)
Two emerging trades selected were Environmental Protection, and Information & Communications Technologies (ICT).
After that, Prof. Ching said that Supplement VII to CEPA allows qualified HK Laboratories to undertake testing for the China Compulsory Certification (CCC) System on a pilot basis for 4 types of products processed in Hong Kong; it would be prepared for all 23 types of products to be extended in Supplement VIII to CEPA.
Finally, Prof. Ching stated the promotion works in HKCTC including 19 trade fairs through platforms of Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) and rising public awareness through Inno-Carnival 2010 and newsletter articles.
The second speaker was Mr. Davey Chung (Assistant Commissioner for Innovation & Technology (Funding Schemes)) and his topic was "Innovation and Technology Fund (ITF)".
Mr. Chung introduced the background of ITF which was set up in 1999 with a commitment of HK$5 billion. ITF had four funding programmes and they were "Innovation and Technology Support Programme (ITSP)", "University-Industry Collaboration Programme (UICP)", "General Support Programme (GSP)" and "Small Entrepreneur Research Assis tance Programme (SERAP)".
After briefed all funding schemes, Mr. Chung mentioned new initiatives of ITF assessment framework. The diagram showed seven new assessment framework as follows.
Two extension of ITF were stated.
- Vertically: expanding scope to cover production of samples / prototypes and conducting of trail schemes in public sector; and providing "Follow-On" funding advanced approval mechanism.
- Horizontally: "cluster projects" approach.
Mr. Chung mentioned the new technology area "Testing and Certification" was added under the new ITSP application form since March 2011.
Mr. Allen Yeung (Vice President, Business Development and Technology Support, HKSTPC) was the fourth speaker and gave his presentation on "Support to the Testing and Certification Industry from Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation".
Firstly, Mr. Yeung briefed the development plan of Science Park (SP). In Phase 1 and 2, there were 350 companies with 8000 people working there. He projected the total number of companies would up to 460 with 15,000 people in SP after Phase 3 completed.
Mr. Yeung briefed the capability of HKSTP five technology clusters to support Six New Economic Pillars which were recommended by the HKSAR Government. Moreover, HKSTP collaborated with different T&C industries (e.g. CMATCL, TUV, HKSTC) and with Local Research Institiutes in the aspect.
At the end, Mr. Yeung concluded four key elements (Business/Market, Government, Academic and Community) would make new economics happen.
Mr. K.W. Chen was the fourth speaker and his topic was "Accreditation Requirement for Laboratories using Shared Facilities in Science Park".
The structure of HKAS was briefed by Mr. Chen.
General accreditation processes were also mentioned.
Then Mr. Chen introduced the assessment of laboratories using shared facilities (e.g. HKSTPC and HKPC). Terms and condition of using shared facilities, and customer information protection were important for laboratory accreditation. He highlighted the following elements should be considered.
- Personnel (Technical Competence)
- Environmental Conditions (Environmental Records)
- Equipment (Traceability of Measurement)
- Test Method (Uncertainty of Measurement)
- Reporting Test Results (Identification of the location of shared facility in test report)
Lastly, Mr. Chen described the requirements of monitoring accredited laboratory using shared facilities. The shared equipment providers (e.g. HKSTPC and HKPC) should support and prepare for assessment of those laboratories using their shared equipment.
The fifth speaker was Mr. Tommy Lai (Principal Trade Officer, Trade and Industry Department) and his presentation called "Trade and Industry Department's Support Measures for SMEs".
Mr. Lai gave the definition of SME which has less than 100 employee in manufacturing and 50 employee in non-manufacturing.
There were two major support areas namely SME fundings and Support and Consultation Centre for SMEs (SUCCESS), and three fund schemes:
- SME Export Marketing Fund (EMF)
- SME Loan Guarantee Scheme (SGS)
- SME Development Fund (SDF)
The distribution chart for EMF was shown.
The distribution chart for SGS was also demonstrated.
The sixth speaker was Ms. Anna Lam (Senior Community Relations Officer, ICAC) and her topic was "Ethics in Practice". Ms. Lam affirmed the professional integrity was the most important element in T&C industry.
Then she introduced Four As for prevention of bribery ordinance (Section 9 - Accepting Bribe). Four As are "Agent", "Accepts", "Act" and "Approval".
Case of Garment Inspectors accepting Bribes was mentioned.
The second case of using false document in construction tendering was discussed.
There were four corruption prevention plan:
- Codes & Guidelines
- Systems of Control
- Ethics Training
- Ethical Leadership
The last speaker was Mr. Richard Lam (Biotechnology Support Laboratory Manager, BDTS of HKSTPC) and his topic named "Laboratory Facilities Supporting The Testing and Certification Industry".
Mr. Lam introduced different centres and laboratories in Technology Support Centre (TSC) under the five technology clusters identified by HKSTPC.
Then he briefed the facilities in each laboratories and the location which participants would visit after the seminar.
Lastly, Mr. Lam mentioned different accreditation achieved in different laboratories and the plan for future accreditation in HKSTP were also introduced.
HKSTPC - TSC - http://lab.hkstp.org/default2.asp
HKPC - http://www.hkpc.org/
SME Funding - http://www.smefund.tid.gov.hk/
SUCCESS - http://www.success.tid.gov.hk/
Hong Kong Ethics Development Centre (under ICAC) - http://www.icac.org.hk/hkedc/intro2.html