Much More than a Fishing Village

Much More than a Fishing Village – Industrial Development in Hong Kong

In this heavily illustrated, example-rich lecture, we will discuss various facets of industrial development in Hong Kong from pre-urban times and on to the present day.

Pre-European era industries such as stone quarrying and masonry, sandalwood grinding and incense production, salt pans, and the early evolution of local export-based fisheries will be discussed.

Early urban-era industries such as ship-repairing and associated trades such as chain and rope manufacture will be discussed. The beginnings of Hong Kong’s “import-add-value-re-export” sector will be covered, with specific reference to the sugar refining industries in Causeway Bay and Taikoo. Processing and re-export of cotton, flour, tobacco, ginger and other primary commodities will also be incorporated.

Early twentieth century light industrialisation (mainly for trade within British Empire markets) will be explored, as well as the pre-war development of light-industrial districts such as Shamshuipo, Hung Hom and North Point.

Post-war industrialisation around Tsuen Wan and eastern Kowloon, with reference to textile manufacture, garments, plastics and component assembly – and some brief mention of the evolution of Hong Kong’s now-important financial services sector – will form the last section of this broad-ranging, thought- provoking lecture.