Chairman's Message

A message from the Chairman

Dear Members,

As Chairman of the Executive Committee, it is my privilege and honour to lead the PWMA in its mission of fostering the growth and development of Hong Kong’s private wealth management industry. Since its establishment in 2013, the PWMA has grown steadily, from an initial 19 members to its current level of around 45 full members, comprising all major providers of private wealth management services in Hong Kong.

The rapid growth of wealth in Asia is creating new opportunities for our industry. Asia is now home to 10 of the 30 cities with the highest number of billionaires globally, with Hong Kong ranking second only to New York. The Hong Kong private wealth management industry accounts for around US$1 trillion in Assets Under Management, according to figures from the Securities and Futures Commission published in July 2018.

Taking advantage of this wealth creation, however, requires that clients trust you to look after their best interests. It also requires a strategic approach toward meeting the challenges and opportunities our industry faces in areas such as regulation and technological innovation. And this underscores the importance of the PWMA’s work.

The PWMA provides a unified industry voice to our member firms, acting as a platform to communicate and engage with regulators, government officials and peer organizations on issues of common interest across our industry.

The PWMA champions high standards and promotes proper conduct, integrity and professional competence on the part of private wealth management practitioners, helping to secure the trust and confidence of our industry’s clients.

Binding all PWMA members is the Association’s Code of Ethics and Conduct, which outlines general principles and expectations of business conduct in the private wealth management industry.

Similarly, all PWMA members are bound by the Treat Customers Fairly Charter for the Private Wealth Management Industry, which PWMA members agreed to adopt at our Annual General Meeting in April 2017. PWMA worked with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to draft this charter, which aims to promote confidence and trust in our member institutions by underscoring our commitment to embracing best practice and high ethical standards in how we serve our clients.

The PWMA further promotes high standards and competence among individual relevant practitioners through Certified Private Wealth Professional (CPWP) accreditation. In order to obtain CPWP certification, bankers are required to meet the standards of the Enhanced Competency Framework, a voluntary scheme setting out an enhanced level of competency expected of Relevant Practitioners in the private wealth management industry. At the end of 2018, about 2,086 front-line professionals were approved as CPWPs.

The PWMA also works on talent development, training and other initiatives aimed at ensuring Hong Kong has the right “software” to meet the demand for private wealth management services that we expect to continue growing for years to come. An excellent example of this is the Pilot Apprenticeship Programme for Private Wealth Management co-organised with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, which recruits young talent from Hong Kong’s universities and provides them front-to-back experience and training over the course of two summers to prepare them for a career in private wealth management. Now in our third recruitment cycle, we are pleased to be offering up to around 56 positions with 16 participating firms beginning in the summer of 2019.

The PWMA extended its reach overseas in January 2018 when we entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Swiss Bankers Association. The MoU aims to promote exchange of ideas and collaboration on developing the private wealth management industry in Hong Kong and Switzerland, and underscores Hong Kong’s standing as a top centre for wealth management globally.

 PWMA’s profile and influence is growing and diversifying further through the addition of new Associate Member firms that provide services which support the private wealth management industry. We are extremely pleased with the interest we have received from law firms, consultancies and other service providers that are closely involved with the industry and with whom we look forward to having closer ties.

Initiatives such as these illustrate the great potential we can realize as an industry working together for our common benefit, and for the benefit of Hong Kong. I am proud to be part of this effort and hope you, our members, feel the same way. I look forward to greater achievements ahead with your collective support.

Yours sincerely,

Amy Lo
Chairman, Executive Committee

January 2019