Multi-Cultural Hong Kong


Download a Cultural map of HK (ZIP file)

Hong Kong attracted immigrant workers from Britain and it’s Empire, as well as those fleeing Communist China, in it’s pre-1997 years.

The evidence of this immigration is evident today with second and third generation residents tracing their roots back to India, Pakistan, Nepal, Southern China and elsewhere.

The predominantly shorter-term residents that have flowed through Hong Kong have left their mark in schools and clubs, giving them a connection to their home countries or special interest group.

For example:

Hong Kong Schools:

American International School
Australian International School Hong Kong
Canadian International School
Chinese International School
Delia School of Canada
German Swiss International School
Harrow International School Hong Kong
Hong Kong Japanese School
Korean International School
Lyc’ee Francais International
Singapore International School (Hong Kong)
Japanese International School (Primary)
Norwegian International School (Primary)

Click here for a full listing

Hong Kong Clubs:

American Club Hong Kong
Club Lucitano (Portuguese)
Indian Recreation Club
Jewish Community Centre
American Women’s Association
Freemasons Hall (English, Scottish, Irish)
United Services Recreation Club (the best curry buffet in town)

Click here for a full listing

Before 1997 many Hong Kong residents sent their children overseas, or migrated themselves due to concerns around the Hong Kong handover. Many have since returned from Canada, the UK, Australia and the US. These numbers have been supplemented by Chinese from the mainland who either buy property in the city or commute daily across the Shenzhen border.

Domestic helpers, predominantly from the Philippines, Indonesia and Thailand are ever present in the City. Their numbers are particularly evident on Sundays and statutory holidays, when they congregate in public areas on their days off.

There is a small African community in Hong Kong. One interesting statistic is that about 20% of mobile phones in use in sub-Saharan Africa have been traded through Chung King Mansions.

The publicly available statistics from the 2011 Population Census indicates the breakdown of the 7M+ population by ethnicity, nationality and place of birth to account for non-Chinese ‘locals’ and overseas Chinese.

Hong Kong in general has been assessed as having a Moderate Proficiency in English . In many sectors, such as Banking and Finance, English fluency is normal.

The consequences of Hong Kong’s tides of immigration and emigration have also left their marks in restaurants and festivals.

One of the less fortunate signs of diversity is wealth diversity. The combined wealth of Hong Kong’s billionaires is equivalent to more than 70% of Hong Kong’s GDP, yet a fifth of the population live in poverty and the City was scored top of a global index for “crony-capitalism”. Read more.

Expats in Hong Kong
Infographic by- GO Globe Hong Kong

Hong Kong’s Cultural Heritage

The Hong Kong Heritage Museum set up an Intangible Heritage Unit to comply with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Convention for the ‘Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage’. The purposes of the Convention are:

(a) to safeguard the intangible cultural heritage (ICH);
(b) to ensure respect for the ICH of the communities, groups and individuals concerned;
(c) to raise awareness at the local, national and international levels of the importance of the ICH, and of ensuring mutual appreciation thereof; and
(d) to provide for international cooperation and assistance.

According to the Convention, the “intangible cultural heritage” is found in:

(a) oral traditions and expressions, including language as a vehicle of the intangible cultural heritage;
(b) performing arts;
(c) social practices, rituals and festive events;
(d) knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe; and
(e) traditional craftsmanship

The first Intangible Cultural Heritage Inventory of Hong Kong was released in 2014. How many items do you recognize?

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