Britain in Hong Kong March-April 2022

Page 1



C O N T E N T S 02 CHAIRMAN'S MESSAGE a letter from the Chamber Chairman to share updates on the Chamber's activities over the past two months

05 THE ROAD TO FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT Eleanor Coleman, Principal, The Financial Empowerment Group

11 EMPOWERING FEMALE LEADERS AND FOUNDERS TOWARDS AN EQUITABLE FUTURE Christina Ong Head of Business Banking Commercial Banking, Hong Kong HSBC



Charlie Nixon, Senior Vice President, Client Solutions • Greater China

SMART TIPS FOR SMES Hong Kong Business Ethics Development Centre, ICAC

17 BILINGUAL EDUCATION - A NEW OPTION FOR CDNIS FAMILIES Lief Erickson - Lower School Principal at Canadian International School of Hong Kong

19 UNIVERSITY APPLICATION: HOW TO APPROACH THE MENTAL STRESSES OF SUCCESS OR FAILURE. Marco Longmore Founder and Executive Director - Castle Rock Education

21 TAX CHECKLIST FOR MOVING TO THE UK Allan Wilkinson, Partner at Buzzacott

CHAIRMAN'S MESSAGE Dear Members I am writing this month’s statement from the isolated comfort of my quarantine hotel room. After an absence of 11 weeks, covering Christmas and New Year in the UK, I am on the last lap. When I left in December I expected to be back in Hong Kong by mid-January. But the twists and turns of COVID variants (combined with flight suspensions and a “wash-out”) have only gone to prove the adage that “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang oft a-gley”. Those of you who have completed some form of quarantine will know that the evenings and weekends are a vacuum filled with endless hours watching all sorts of nonsense on TV.

Kong of some 72,400 people in the month of February (95,000 departures and 22,600 arrivals)

“Quarantiners” have, for a few weeks only, an entirely defensible excuse to binge watch all those Netflix and Amazon Prime dramas that we otherwise only hear about from our teenage children.

From my quarantine room I have tried to stay as close to the situation as possible by speaking to members, engaging with my friends and my colleagues and attempting to answer the question whether we are experiencing a systemic change or a temporary moment of anxiety.

This time has been different. I have been unable to turn my eyes away from the news channels. The local Hong Kong ones have been filled with reports of the unfolding COVID crisis and the Government response. The international ones have been pretty much dedicated to the terrible events in Ukraine. I have sat, surreally, in the cossetted surroundings of my hotel room, with a supply of brown paper bags delivering me breakfast, lunch and dinner and I have started to become concerned. A fortnight’s isolation in a crisis with unlimited access to TV news and too much food is really not good for either the mental or physical well-being. Just the rumours of tougher restrictions and isolations are having a material impact on business activity and at the same time causing a number of people – expats and Hong Kongers – to move away from the SAR, perhaps for an extended but temporary period, perhaps permanently. Economists’ GDP growth forecasts have been adjusted downwards and the international border crossing statistics are not encouraging. There has been a net exit from Hong xx

Of course this is a cause for concern in the Chamber.

One of the problems is that Hong Kong’s current COVID case load and the heavy pressures on the healthcare system are being experienced for the first time. The rest of the world went through this phase of pandemic management some two years ago. We can all recall events from around the world in 2020: the harrowing scenes which began to emerge from Wuhan in January; the collapsing healthcare system in northern Italy in March; the lockdown for the winter and most of the spring in the UK, including the hospitalisation of the Prime Minister; the utterly fatigued faces of the healthcare workers in New York overwhelmed by the ambulances of sick and dying delivered to A&E. Hong Kong never went through any of this. The second problem is that whilst Hong Kong seems to be taking a step back into the winter of 2020, the rest of the world is moving forward into the spring of 2022 and developing ways of ‘Living with COVID’. The rest of the world is ditching quarantine, PCR tests on arrival and isolation arrangements, Hong Kong is imposing some of the strictest versions we have seen so far. An asymmetry of COVID measures has emerged as a result.

The key take-away is that like Wuhan, northern Italy, the UK and New York, Hong Kong will emerge the other side of this moment and we will eventually see normal operations resume. We have debated these issues at the General Committee and engaged with the membership through one Town Hall. I have also had many one-on-one virtual conversations with members from my quarantine hotel. We can analyse the way forward in three phases: -

Dealing with and defeating the 5th wave; Exit and recovery from the 5th wave; and The longer term restoration of business confidence.

As we go to press with the magazine, we are writing to the Government along these lines and will make our letter available on the Chamber’s website so that you can see what we have said. One of the key features of Hong Kong’s attractiveness as a business centre is the exceptional quality of the city’s international schools, many of which are members of the Chamber. Through the Education Sub-Committee we addressed one particular area of concern for students, parents and teachers – the proposal by the Government to close all schools during the Universal Testing programme in March and most of April and to reschedule teaching during July and August. This arrangement clearly would not work for students studying an international curriculum and working to an international timetable. It was therefore pleasing that an exception was granted for international schools and they are now able to continue with their existing timetable arrangements, albeit on-line, until in-person schooling can be resumed – hopefully at the end of April. You can see the letter we wrote to the Education Secretary on this matter through this link. The SME sector is the backbone of any vibrant business community and that is as true for Hong Kong as it is for much larger and more diverse economies. As the 5th wave began and before the Financial Secretary’s budget it was clear that we would need some more additional support for this critical business group. The chamber’s SME SubCommittee wrote a letter with some substantive proposals and you can see this by following this link. The current pandemic measures will have an impact on the spirit and prosperity of the community in which we live. In that context I am delighted with the Chamber’s initiative to launch a Community Outreach Programme. Through the xxxx

Chamber’s Social Sustainability Committee (formerly the "CSR Steering Group”) we will be focusing on four areas: -

Environment & Energy; Youth & Education; Poverty alleviation; and Diversity & Inclusion.

These are important areas of concern for the future of Hong Kong and I hope as many members as possible can show their support. I am convinced that it is at times of crisis that the business voice is critical. At the Chamber we will continue to advocate and lobby for the actions and outcomes that will allow Hong Kong to resume normal operations as quickly as possible. I do urge all members to get involved and participate in the discussion and debate. We value your input. As a result of the current COVID measures the Chamber has had to revert to online events and zoom calls. Our events programme is, however, packed. Working from home makes it easier to squeeze in an hour over lunch from time to time. As an active participant in Chamber webinars I can tell you that they are far superior to the hours you could otherwise spend on Netflix or Amazon Prime psycho dramas. As we plan the Chamber’s calendar for the rest of the year the support for our members and business in general will be top of our programme. We know these are tough times and it is easy to believe, like the fabled chicken, that the sky is falling. Hong Kong is resilient and the opportunities for businesses are not going away. The sky will not fall.

Peter Burnett, OBE Chairman, The British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong



In honour of International Women's Day I thought I would take some time to focus on the financial needs and milestones that most of us, as women, face. Being a woman is sometimes overwhelming. With the pressure to be the perfect role model/mum/partner/career woman while remaining calm and sane. It can be hard to find the time to think too far into the future or prioritise our own needs. When faced with a massive to-do list, spanning work, family, personal, and the ever-expanding “miscellaneous-yetvital” tasks it is incredibly easy for “sorting out my/our finances” to drop further and further out of mind. The thought of investing, saving for retirement, filling in forms and developing concrete financial goals often gets lost in the minutia of day-to-day life. When it comes to financial decisions throughout our lives, women tend to face more challenges than men. We live longer, are paid less, take more career breaks to care for family. We don’t have the time or resources to make mistakes and therefore miss out on opportunities. Women also have a longer life expectancy and therefore longer retirement and higher potential need for the expenses of old age care. Therefore, it is vital to have a properly thought out and executed plan to make sure that they can afford to live the life they want on their own terms. The last few years, starting with the Covid-19 pandemic, coupled with the Great Resignation, has triggered a dramatic impact on the way we live and work. It is interesting to note, since the onset of Covid-19 the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) found that more than 2.3 million women have left the labour force in the US alone, compared to 1.8 million men. It has also triggered a lot of reflection as to how we spend our time and money and how both can be used more efficiently to lead to greater happiness in our lives. Women need to be financially savvy and independent now more than ever and empower themselves make sound financial decisions today which will determine their own future. As Michelle Obama once said, “there is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish”. This no doubt rings true, but it is just a matter of women having more confidence in their own skills and judgement. Women must also be willing to take the steering wheel in making their own financial decisions and to build a solid financial plan that evolves with all of our everchanging lifestyles. 05

The life stage of where a woman is at also affects her financial decisions Throughout our lives, there are always challenges to be faced, whether physical, emotional or social. No matter which stage of life a woman is at there will be unique financial challenges to face too. By looking at each phase and analysing the challenges, we can better understand how each stage could affect a woman financially. Becoming aware of these can help women better plan for their finances down the line. Everyone’s life takes different twists and turns – and the below, of course, is a generalisation and none of us in reality can be put in boxes. However the below outlines some financial considerations at different life stages.

Early on a woman’s life is the best time to start saving and making the most of long-term compounding interest to prepare for retirement. However, this is also the hardest time to save as it is probably the time when she will be earning the least. For most of us, when we start working, we want to live independently from our family and so need to start paying rent. For those of us who go to University, it is likely that we need to start repaying student loans soon after graduation and the challenge of paying bills and being a “proper” grown up can be daunting. Eventually, if we want to buy property, we need to consider saving a deposit and getting a mortgage which might feel like an additional burden of debt. At the same time as juggling these financial burdens, women starting their careers are probably working at a job with a lower salary than their male counterparts. Research by HRM Asia in 2020 found that the gender pay gap stands at 15% and that generally women enter the workforce on a lower salary than a man in the same position, even if they are more highly educated. How does any woman at this life stage consider a financial plan at this moment in time when they have other priorities to deal with? 06

As life goes on it presents other opportunities and distractions like career changes, marriage, long term relationships and children. With all of these huge life events to manage there is simply no time for many to consider making the most of saving. At this stage, retirement seems like something so far off that it can be dealt with later. Ironically, the busier you are, the less time you have for financial planning and goal setting and the more important it becomes. Many women in the early and middle stages of their lives they do not have a clear financial plan or a map of how they are going to get there. A survey conducted back in 2020 by St. James’s Place Asia Retirement and Wealth Planning Survey, highlighted that 48% of Singapore residents and 53% of Hong Kong residents believe they won’t have enough money saved for retirement. What’s more alarming is that over a third surveyed in both territories are not aware of how much income they need to retire and so don’t have a goal to aim for or a place to start from. It is in the middle stage of life when women are most likely to take career breaks to care for their loved ones, which usually means less disposable income, less saving and potentially eating into money they have already put away. Unfortunately, this is also the life stage where divorce most typically happens, which might mean a split in assets and property and possibly a future with a very different household income – often creating more financial hardship for women in particular. For those facing a loss of a partner though death or divorce, the financial reality of being in charge of all the money decisions can be overwhelming, particularly if this is the first time you have done it. Finally, in the later stages of life it is likely that most of us want to slow down or stop working altogether and retire. Regardless of whether you decide to work part time, volunteer, or spend your retirement travelling and seeing the world, it is vital to have enough money to be self-sufficient and be able to do what you want. As women we have a much higher likelihood of achieving a 100-year life and spending more years with chronic age-related illnesses also meaning a need of some form of care in later life. Paying for care can be one of the most expensive commitments we will ever have to make as those of us with aging parents can attest to. Therefore, we need to make sure that the actions we have taken in the first and second stages of our lives will give us savings sufficient for a comfortable retirement that could conceivably last for 30 or more years. The reality is not the case, women are likely to have a smaller retirement pot than men. Research from Brink estimates that there is a gender gap of 44% in retirement savings for working mothers in Asia, because this group of women are paid lesser than men in employment and have a shorter employment period due to family-related career breaks.

At the later stage of their lives, women will need to do all that they can to avoid running out of money. As daunting as it may sound, there are consequences of not being able to manage finances adequately. With women starting off at a disadvantage already, putting off financial decisions which could have been made early on in their lives could result in being constantly worried about whether there are sufficient funds to last for another year or so, when, with a little preparation, they could be living through retirement comfortably and free of financial stress. 07

By improving our financial literacy and helping to raise awareness of the importance and benefits around making sound financial decisions we can alleviate the struggles and challenges that may occur down the line. It is never too late, and if you find yourself in the later stages of your career with no clear plan for retirement or goal there is always a benefit to stopping and considering a series of options and how best to afford them. The importance of financial literacy for women and the need to be financially independent A study by The WealthiHer Network found that 46% of women interviewed believe financial autonomy is of medium or high importance. On top of that, both men and women who reported a good level of financial education also reported higher rates of self-esteem. This indicates to us that being financially educated and autonomous is important in women’s financial confidence and self-esteem. Achieving financial literacy and money management skills can help women understand and manage both their personal and household finances. It can also provide women with a deeper sense of security, which in turn makes it easier for them to save and invest for their future. With the right support and guidance, enhancing financial awareness can relieve a woman’s stress over their struggles, and empower them to gain autonomy over their finances. Women all across the world are moving away from the traditional expectations of cultural and society and are striving to progress and reach their goals and dreams. Yet, statistics from Catalyst show that only 5.8% of S&P 500 CEOs are women, and research from McKinsey states that women of colour only make up 3% of women in C-Suite positions, compared to 66% of white men. There is still a long way to go for women to get the financial support they need to progress. Nevertheless, it is vital for women to be aware of the value of financial education and planning, as this can empower them with the luxury of choice and the freedom to live as they wish in the future. It is therefore essential for women to have a clear understanding of the challenges they face, who they can turn to for advice and what resources are available to them to help facilitate this process. In order to build financial independence and wealth, it is important to start saving, investing, budgeting and planning for the future you want. The earlier that you can start this the better. Understanding how to set financial goals in the short, medium and long-term can help to make sure that you are going in the right direction. In all life stages there can be positive steps taken to strengthen your financial position and increase your confidence in your future financial security. Education is key – So what’s available out there at the moment for women? When it comes to educating yourself, it is all about taking the first step. Don’t panic if you haven’t had the advantage of starting early – or you feel that you can’t afford to save the “right amount” of money each month. There are still actions that you can take regardless of where you are in your life. Firstly, start saving now – no matter how big or small an amount. By making it a habit to save on a weekly or monthly basis, you will start to see your savings add up over time. This emergency savings pot can also help in the worst of times, such as a health scare, family emergency or job loss. Budgeting allows you to spend within your means and save for your financial goals. Even managing the most basics of budgeting and examining it on a monthly basis, can help you get your financial plan on track. Something 08

as simple as listing the incoming money and outgoing expenses for a few months can help you understand where the money is going and where you can make changes. Budgeting does not mean scrimping and cutting back on everything, allocating money to experiences, holidays and luxury goods or a treat to yourself can all be part of it. Tapping into investments can be another option, as it can serve as a vehicle to help your savings grow. Women are just as effective as men when it comes to investing, sometimes more so. We need to take the time to understand what options are available, how best to make the most of what we have, what we are investing in, how it works and if it is right for us. Finally, seeking professional support can help you with tailored advice and guidance no matter which life stage you are at. A professional adviser should be able to review all your assets and look at the whole picture and what you have an where it is – be it cash in savings accounts, property or investment portfolios – and can help you determine how all of these could work smarter for you. Conclusion Every woman is unique and leads their life differently; there is no one-size-fits-all financial advice or template that we can all follow. However, we must remember that women face additional challenges that would impact financial decisions, planning and goals. On top of that, different life stages require a different financial focus, which can lead to challenges or create amazing opportunities to better our financial situation. By educating ourselves, and getting the right support and guidance, we can all (men included) have a better chance at achieving financial freedom, no matter at what life stage we are at. So start saving now and make it a habit to do so – a small change in your financial habits can make great improvements to your finances down the line. Source: About The Financial Empowerment Group The Financial Empowerment Group aims to help women and members of the LGBTQ+ community to achieve financial freedom through education, planning and action. We aim to provide straight-talking, simple financial advice. Avoiding financial jargon and making you feel good about your choices at every stage of the journey. The Financial Empowerment Group is a Partner Practice of St. James’s Place, the UK’s largest financial advice provider with over 830,000 clients and £154bn in assets under management. Eleanor Coleman, Principal, The Financial Empowerment Group

Empowering female leaders and founders towards an equitable future Female representation in leadership and entrepreneurship has gained important ground in recent years, but much more can be done.

Women entrepreneurs in Hong Kong have a wide range of motivations for starting their businesses, flexibility in their working arrangements and bringing positive change in society being key factors. But they also face specific challenges such as developing an online presence, family resistance and raising money. In particular, HSBC found that 68% of female founders in Hong Kong have been denied funding during the investment pitching process, 18% higher than the global average. Moreover, 58% have expressed concerns about bias when raising capital. This underlines the need to establish networks of empowerment as well as promote greater allyship between women and men in the push for gender equality. Identifying the challenges Whether it be entrenched gender bias or a lack of professional mentors, the playing field for women and men is yet to be levelled. A necessary first step is to understand these barriers so that the right remedies can be pursued. An important example is access to financing for new business ventures. An earlier survey found that over 50% of male entrepreneurs pitch to a majority or all-male panel of investors, while only 8% of female founders have the opportunity to present to all or mostly female ones. Gender bias was also discovered to be responsible for women securing, on average, 5% less capital than their male counterparts. Another area in need of attention is female representation on boards in Hong Kong, which as of 2021 was only 14.3%. Towards this end, HSBC has been connected to the 30% Club Hong Kong, whose mission is to increase the percentage of women on the boards of Hang Seng-listed companies to 30%. Greater diversity in the boardroom is increasingly seen as good for performance, role modelling and innovation, among other benefits. But new approaches to increasing representation are needed, such as transparent gender monitoring and establishing sustainable strategies that support female progression. 11

Similarly, there are challenges in raising representation across senior leadership roles. Which is why HSBC has committed to achieving 35% women in such positions by 2025 - as of 2021, we had reached 31.7%. This progress is being channelled through initiatives such as Accelerating Female Leaders and our Explore leadership course. Building communities of support A critical starting point for female empowerment is community building, and creating an environment of access to mentors, resources and networking opportunities. These can act as important educational contexts where there are opportunities to challenge established norms, question existing thinking about the status quo and imagine new futures. For my part, in 2011 I helped launch the Women’s Network, a Hong Kong-based initiative designed to channel voices from within HSBC on issues related to diversity and inclusion, attracting and retaining female talent and promoting mental and physical wellbeing among female employees. The Network has focused on raising awareness through local female-focused speaker events and workshops as well as building solidarity through volunteering activities in the community. Our motto for the coming year is #breakthebias, and we will continue progressing us towards gender equality, be it in corporate or entrepreneurial settings. Building community is also central to supporting female founders. For example, last year HSBC has partnered with AllBright – an empowerment community for women with courses and events tailored to help them succeed in their careers - in launching HSBC Roar, a programme aiming to support female entrepreneurs looking to scale their businesses. HSBC Roar’s core objectives include providing access to networks of like-minded women, overcoming bias in the business pitching process and disseminating investment knowledge among female founders. Beyond fundraising, having networks of support can also help women who experience difficulties in running their businesses. HSBC research revealed that women entrepreneurs find ‘building a network’ and ‘finding potential mentors’ to be comparatively harder than their male counterparts. These findings underscore the value of programmes such as HSBC Roar. Looking to the future, together The work of empowerment is an undertaking with long-term benefits, for women as well as the organisations they work for and contribute to. Overcoming gender bias and ushering in an era of greater equality is a collective effort that requires creative thinking about the future. Whether in leadership or entrepreneurship, increasing female representation promises returns across the board – because a future that champions equal rights between genders and values diverse ideas is a future full of bright opportunities.

Christina Ong Head of Business Banking Commercial Banking, Hong Kong HSBC

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited is the founding member of the HSBC Group. HSBC serves customers worldwide from offices in 64 countries and territories in its geographical regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America, and Middle East and North Africa. With assets of USD$3.0tn at 31 December 2021, HSBC is one of the largest banking and financial services organisations in the world. 12

CEO Survey 2022: An Optimistic Outlook for the Year Ahead For the last three years, GLG has surveyed CEOs around the world about the year that has gone by and their expectations for the one to come. This year’s GLG CEO Survey is global, with executives from every region and across a wide range of industries. The custom panel, drawn from GLG’s network of approximately 1 million experts, was conducted in November 2021. It consists of a total of 471 CEO respondents across a range of industries, with 162 respondents from the Americas, 152 from EMEA, and 157 from APAC. Overall, the 2022 survey found our CEOs in transition as their companies emerged from the worst of the pandemic. While many industries were hurt by COVID-19 and the related lockdowns, others thrived. Businesses that did not depend on an in-person workforce found new technologydriven ways to work; online marketplaces continued to meet the needs of homebound customers; and investments in research and development seemed to be paying off. Despite the pandemic’s persistence, CEOs across all three regions seem optimistic, expressing confidence that

their company revenue will grow in 2022. What’s more, optimism is even greater regarding the global economy. Nearly three-quarters of our respondents expect the global economy to grow in 2022, compared with half the CEOs we surveyed who answered the same way in our prepandemic survey of 2020. This year’s survey found CEOs largely aligned, with mostly marginal differences in their experiences and expectations. Below are a few of the high-level findings broken out by region.

Americas Company Revenue 49% of respondents said that they saw their revenue increase in 2021 64% expressed at least some confidence that their revenue would grow in 2022 (confident + very confident) Return to Work 30% said they’ve established a hybrid model: some days in the office, some remote Global Economy Forecast 65% told us they expect the global economy to increase in 2022


Supply Chain Impact 36% said that supply chain issues would have the most impact on the global economy

By Charlie Nixon, Senior Vice President, Client Solutions • Greater China

APAC Company Revenue 48% of respondents said that they saw their revenue increase in 2021 73% expressed confidence that their revenue would grow in 2022 (confident + very confident) Return to Work 45% said they’ve established a hybrid model: some days in the office, some remote Global Economy Forecast 75% told us they expect the global economy to increase in 2022 Supply Chain Impact 42% said that supply chain issues would have the most impact on the global economy

EMEA Company Revenue 40% of respondents said that they saw their revenue increase in 2021 68% expressed at least some confidence that their revenue would grow in 2022 Return to Work 59% said they’ve established a hybrid model: some days in the office, some remote Global Economy Forecast 74% told us they expect the global economy to increase in 2022 Supply Chain Impact 68% expressed confidence that their revenue would grow in 2022 (confident + very confident)

About GLG GLG is The World’s Insight Network. We connect decision makers to the right experts so they can act with the confidence that comes from true clarity and have what it takes to get ahead. Out network of experts is the world’s largest and most varied source of first-hand expertise, and we recruit hundreds of new experts every day. We bring the power of insights to every great professional decision. Visit and learn more.

The GLG CEO Survey also includes reflections on COVID-19’s past and future impact, the concerns that CEOs have for the coming year, and the investments they’re planning to make to have a successful 2022. We also asked our CEO panel about their feelings regarding corporate responsibility. The survey’s findings ultimately create a picture of how CEOs across the world view the coming year. Many challenges have risen out of the pandemic — threats to the supply chain, rising inflation, talent acquisition and retention — but CEOs are showing their resilience, investing in new technology and innovation to drive success in the year ahead. 14

Bilingual Education - A new option for CDNIS families Lief Erickson - Lower School Principal at Canadian International School of Hong Kong

Since 1991, the Canadian International School of Hong Kong (CDNIS) has drawn on the strength of its Canadian and Chinese foundations to create a unique learning environment for children from Early Years 1 (pre-kindergarten) to Grade 12 on one campus. From August 2022, CDNIS will introduce a bilingual option in the Early Years Programme (EY1–EY2, 3–5 years old) consisting of 50% English and 50% Chinese content, which will expand to cover the entire Primary programme over the next several years. All families, new and current, will have the choice to join either our international or bilingual track. The school’s decision to introduce its bilingual programme at this time is based on both survey data from our existing clientele, as well as an increased demand from prospective families seeking a bilingual programme for their children. The school recognizes that English and Mandarin are the two most widely spoken languages in the world and that there are numerous cognitive benefits to learning an additional language. Therefore, CDNIS has decided to build on its existing and robust Chinese Language programme through the addition of the bilingual option as further preparation of our youngest learners to be citizens of a globally connected world. Local or international families will now have the opportunity to decide which language track is best for their family situation and educational goals for their child. Everyone, no matter their language background or experience, is welcome in our bilingual programme for the first three years, Early Years 1 to Prepatory. From Grade 1, a Chinese language proficiency requirement will be part of the admissions process to ensure that the academic standards are maintained and not hindered by a lack of foundational knowledge in one of the two target languages. Of course, some families may wish to maintain English as their focus while continuing to develop their Chinese language. These families will be able to continue to select and benefit from our well-established international track. Students will also have the opportunity to move from one track to another if their educational goals change and they meet the language requirements (only if transferring to the bilingual programme).

What will the bilingual option look like? Starting in August 2022, our bilingual programme will begin with our youngest learners (EY1 and EY2, 3–5-year-olds) and progressively extend to the other grades in the Lower School. 17

We have decided to introduce a dual language immersion model. This is where students are immersed in one of the target languages throughout an entire day. English and Chinese will be taught both as a discipline as well as a medium in which disciplinary instruction is delivered. Students will therefore experience all their core subjects in both languages while having distinct language outcomes for both English and Chinese. Bilingual education is an umbrella term that refers to any programme with instruction in two languages. Dual language education is a specific approach to developing language proficiency and literacy in one XXXXXXXXXXX native language and one foreign language. In the case of CDNIS, it will combine both Chinese and English native speakers in one classroom where academic content will be taught in both languages. Students maintain their native language while adding another language, and they develop pride in their own culture while developing an understanding of others. Teachers and Educational Assistants in the bilingual programme at CDNIS are proficient to a native level in either English or Mandarin Chinese. Conceptual understanding and skills are developed through both languages while differentiating for the proficiency level of each child. The English-speaking or the Chinese-speaking homeroom teacher will teach the class for an entire day in one of the two target languages. Both teachers will collaboratively plan the lessons for the week to ensure correct alignment and progression of all curricular expectations. The curriculum for both the international and bilingual programme will be identical except for the additional Chinese Language objectives in the bilingual programme. Both tracks will be delivered using the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme framework, offering students learning experiences supported by the latest research on pedagogical practices. The curriculum expectations in the Early Years are a blend of Ontario’s Early Years and Hong Kong Kindergarten outcomes. Prep to Grade 5 expectations are drawn from the Ontario Standards for all subjects except Chinese which is based on Hong Kong, Mainland and Taiwan Chinese subject standards.

Who can apply? The bilingual programme is for: Current CDNIS families who are seeking an equal focus on English and Chinese language and culture Local or international families looking for an international curriculum and want their children to learn in two languages Chinese-speaking families who want greater exposure to English, without losing their Chinese as an academic language Adding this bilingual option will help us ensure we find the right pathway to fit each individual student's learning style and educational goals so that they may be successful in their educational journey. CDNIS is excited to continue to expand our options for our community as we continue to strive to inspire excellence, cultivate character, and empower engagement locally and globally. You can find information about our Bilingual Programme and our school at 18

UNIVERSITY APPLICATION: HOW TO APPROACH THE MENTAL STRESSES OF SUCCESS OR FAILURE. MARCO LONGMORE FOUNDER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - CASTLE ROCK EDUCATION As we settled to our collective responsibility to ‘fight the virus’ in the coming weeks, facing mandatory testing, compulsory isolations and the suspensions of the norms of daily life here in Hong Kong, there has rightly been a focus given to individual and societal mental health. Our Education Committee has recently held a joint meeting with our Healthcare Committee on this very topic. Considering how we might approach HK Government and through our own actions highlight and support concern for mental health related issues across the city. A key demographic that is vulnerable to mental health issues is our adolescent children. Faced with the many pressures of teenage life, exacerbated by the isolation faced during pandemic prevention restrictions, the month of March creates an even more intense pressure on those awaiting news of university application into undergraduate courses for 2022-23.

Parents face a heavy burden of concern over how to balance considered advice on their children’s future without undue pressure. Not an easy tightrope to walk! To navigate this process, here are some reflections over how best to support our children as they approach and deal with university admission.

1. Inspire Whether discussing future careers or university education, ensure that the conversation is one that makes life sound exciting and optimistic. The most successful university applications and future careers are based around investment from the individual and we don’t invest in what we don’t believe in. 19

2. Encourage In 30 years in education, I have yet to find a conversation that failed to end in a positive boost, even if short lived, that was based around encouragement. In the workplace and in the classroom, all of us can find the fault in our ability and are helped by having the good spelled out. Teenagers more often than not know their own failings acutely but need support in seeing their strengths.

If you seek further advice as to how best to prepare your own child for future university destinations and careers and how best to support your teenager through that journey, please feel free to enquire at We will be happy to have that conversation with you. Marco Longmore Founder and Executive Director - Castle Rock Education

3. Reality Schools have become adept at highlighting the success of their university destinations for leavers by championing as their measure the first-choice destination offers received. Building up to this takes years of careful and trusted advice over what course and which destination is best suited to personality, character, and ability in certain disciplines. A first-choice offer from the local technical college is worth as much as a first choice Oxbridge offer to the recipient. Celebrate both equally. Listen to the advice being offered at your child’s school.

4. Respect Disappointment Dismissing disappointment consolidates the sense of loss for not achieving the outcome sought. By recognizing and giving time for a disappointment to process, the individual will have greater certainty over whether to pursue the goal again, perhaps by a different route or make a perfectly legitimate decision to drop that goal for the purpose of another. Both outcomes need some time for real committed decision to be taken.

5. Bake! The ingredients for success in a career path and in university choices and study commitment need mixing. The same raw materials in different measure produce very different outcomes to the smell and flavour of life. Renewed baking of that mixture and a willingness to NOT live eating the same food every day and year makes for a more interesting purpose and for a much deeper appreciation of what can be achieved at different stages in a career. Consider many different routes and destinations that are suited for your child. Schools that hold a breadth of vision and passion for what they commit to with their pupils understand how to blend the conversations that I encourage you to have.

About Castle Rock Education Castle Rock Education (CRE) is an international education consultancy, providing bespoke support service to international brand partners in British styled holistic education. Supporting preoperational and school running needs, governance, and strategic planning, as well as staff recruitment and leadership coaching for schools in South East Asia and the Middle East.


Tax checklist for moving to the UK Allan Wilkinson, Partner at Buzzacott

Whether you’re moving to the UK permanently or just for the foreseeable future, it’s important for you to plan ahead to ensure a smooth transition. This checklist highlights the key tax areas for you to consider, to make sure you remain compliant.

In the year of arrival (and departure) it’s possible to split the UK tax year into resident and non-resident periods if certain conditions are met. If split year treatment applies, during the non-resident period you are only subject to UK tax in respect of UK source income.

Which visa will you require?

UK bank account

Before you even think about tax, your first port of call is to establish your visa. If you’re not a UK national, you’ll require a visa to study, live or work in the UK. There are multiple routes of entry to the UK and you can browse the different types of visa’s available on the UK government website. We would always recommend that you speak to an immigration lawyer before you apply for a visa, and we can recommend someone from our trusted network to support you with this.

Once your plans are set, you should look to set up a UK bank account prior to moving to the UK if possible. This will help you from a UK credit rating perspective and in practical terms, such as receiving salary and paying UK expenses. Having a UK bank account also helps prevent unnecessary remittances and exposure to foreign exchange rate changes.

Establishing UK residence

The UK Self Assessment tax system

There are three stages to determine whether you are resident in the UK in any one given tax year:

The UK tax year runs from 6 April to 5 April and tax returns are prepared on an individual basis.

1. A series of tests to indicate whether you definitely are not UK resident. 2. A series of tests to determine if you definitely are UK resident. 3. If you don’t meet any of the definitive tests, the more complex Sufficient Ties Test looks at your facts and circumstances in addition to your actual days of presence in the UK.

Not every UK resident is required to file a UK tax return. If your circumstances are straightforward, with a UK payroll and small UK investment income, it’s unlikely that you’ll need to file one.

In order to work in the UK, you’ll require a UK National Insurance number. Details on how to apply for one can be found on the UK government website.

If you or your parents were born outside the UK, it’s possible that you’ll be considered not domiciled in the UK for tax purposes. Domicile essentially means “place of permanent belonging”, so if you have made no definite plans to remain here in the UK for the rest of your life, you’re unlikely to be regarded as UK domiciled. 21

If you’re not UK-domiciled, you can choose the remittance basis of taxation. This generally means that you are only taxed on your UK source income and gains plus any overseas income and gains you bring into the UK. If you have income which doesn’t have tax withheld at source or wish to claim the remittance basis, you will likely have a UK tax filing requirement. If a UK tax return is required, you must register for UK Self Assessment by 31 October following the end of the tax year in which you arrive. Your first UK Self Assessment tax return will be due the 31 January following the end of the tax year. If your UK tax returns shows a liability due, this is payable on the same date the return is due.

National Insurance Contributions (NIC) Paying UK NIC gives you entitlement to UK state benefits, such as a UK state pension. Generally, everyone over the age of 16 working in the UK is required to pay UK NIC. NICs are collected through UK payroll for employees and through the UK Self-Assessment system for self-employed individuals.

Many people opt to rent a property in the UK when they first arrive to take the stress out of finding a property to buy in a suitable area before they move to the UK.

UK pension plans As a non-UK national living in the UK, you’re entitled to save into a UK pension plan. If you work as an employee, you’re likely to be automatically enrolled into an employer pension plan whereby both yourself and your employer make contributions. You can also set up and contribute to a private pension plan such as a UK Self-Invested Personal Pension Plan. Depending on the level of your income, you can make tax efficient contributions to a UK pension plan of up to £40,000 per UK tax year.

Non-UK investments and bank accounts If you have non-UK investment accounts, it’s important to review and understand the tax implications of continuing to hold these investments after you become resident in the UK.

If you’re moving to the UK from certain specified countries or a country that has a social security agreement with the UK, then it’s often possible to continue paying into the other country's social security system for a period of time rather than paying UK NICs.

If you’re looking to claim the remittance basis of taxation, you can look at pre-arrival planning with regards to structuring your offshore accounts. This can allow you to take advantage of remitting clean non-UK capital to the UK even after you are resident there.

UK property

Other considerations

Purchasing a property in the UK is a large commitment that requires careful planning both from a personal and tax perspective. You need to consider your place of work, access to travel networks and proximity of schools if you have children. Once you’ve established where you want to live, there are tax and other factors that you need to plan for. For example: If you own other property anywhere in the world, there will be an additional Stamp Duty Land Tax charge to consider. If you’re planning to reside in more than one property, consideration should be given to which property is your principal private residence for Capital Gains Tax purposes. How will the property purchase be funded? UK mortgages can be difficult to obtain if you have no UK credit history. If purchasing with another person, will you own the property jointly with right of survivorship or as tenants in common?

As well as the tax, there are several other non-tax considerations such as: Obtaining and paying for a television licence. Arranging utility suppliers for broadband, gas, electric and water. Having adequate insurances in place (life, home, car, pet etc.) Taking your belongings to the UK. Checking whether your driving licence is valid in the UK. Moving your pets and their potential quarantine upon arrival. About Buzzacott: Buzzacott’s dedicated team in Hong Kong provides bespoke UK and US tax services across Southeast Asia, backed by a team of specialists based in London, England who have helped UK taxpayers around the world for over 50 years. If you’re a foreign national looking to move to the UK, or if you've just arrived, Buzzacott can help you understand you tax obligations and plan for the future. 22