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Hard-to-get credit, dominant conglomerates deter startups in HK

Though 80% of entrepreneurs don't regret starting a business in Hong Kong, many of them find difficulties in securing credit (78%), market domination by large corporations (68%), and red tape (61%) the major deterrents to would-be entrepreneurs in the city, said workplaces provider Regus.

The company recently released results of a startup survey in which more than 26,000 business owners and decision-makers from 90 countries participated.

Survey results also indicate that 57 % of the local business community find the lack of government support for entrepreneurs as a deterrent.

But this factor, according to Regus, is ranked the fourth-greatest by Hongkongers out of five common deterrents in the survey, compared to 74 % of mainland respondents and a resounding 97 % of Taiwanese respondents seeing the same issue as an obstacle.

"The survey results -- both from local entrepreneurs and the wider Hong Kong business community -- suggest that local entrepreneurs are a pretty resilient bunch, willing to take risks, and overcome obstacles if that's what it takes to succeed," said John Henderson, CFO, Regus Asia-Pacific. "As SMBs make up more than 98 % of total business units in Hong Kong, they make significant contribution to the economy. The government needs to provide greater support and help remove obstacle by cutting red tape."

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