SME Export Marketing Fund (EMF)


EMF aims to encourage small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to expand their markets outside Hong Kong by providing financial assistance to SMEs for participation in export promotion activities.


An enterpriseapplying for a grant under EMF must fulfil the following requirements:

  1. It must be registered in Hong Kong under the Business Registration Ordinance (Chapter 310).
  2. It must meet the Government’s definition of an SME, i.e. if it is engaged in manufacturing business, it must employ fewer than 100 persons2 in Hong Kong; and if it is engaged in non-manufacturing business, employ fewer than 50 persons in Hong Kong.
  3. It must have substantive business operations in Hong Kong at the time of making the application.  An enterprise holding a shell business registration or having its main business operation outside Hong Kong will not be regarded as having substantive business operations3 in Hong Kong.
  4. If it has previously received EMF grants, the cumulative amount of grants received must not exceed the prevailing cumulative grant ceiling.  Applicant enterprises which have similar business registration details (e.g. nature of business, address, shareholder/directorship) will be treated as connected enterprises.  For the purpose of the cumulative grant ceiling, connected enterprises are treated as if they were one enterprise, i.e. the cumulative amount of grants received by the connected enterprises concerned are aggregated and must not exceed the cumulative grant ceiling.
  5. It must not be the organiser/co-organiser or a related company of the organiser/co-organiser of the export promotion activity covered by the application.

Trade and Industry Department (TID) reserves at all times the absolute right to determine the eligibility of an enterprise applying for a EMF grant.


1. For the purpose of EMF, “enterprise” refers to a legal entity which is engaged in any form of business for the purpose of gain.  Non-profit-making or non-profit-distributing organisations are not eligible.

2. “Number of persons employed” shall include proprietors/partners/shareholders actively engaged in the work of the business, and all salaried employees of the enterprise at the time of submitting the application.  Those employees, including both full-time and part-time salaried personnel, no matter permanent or temporary, must be directly paid by the enterprise.

3. Trade and Industry Department may request the applicant enterprise to provide relevant documents to prove that it has substantive business operations in Hong Kong at the time of making the application.  When considering whether the applicant enterprise has substantive business operations in Hong Kong, TID makes reference to various factors, such as:

–  nature of the business operation in Hong Kong
–  size/extent/percentage of the business operation in Hong Kong
–  investment amount in Hong Kong
–  number of employees in Hong Kong
–  information of customers/clients
–  year of establishment
–  whether profits are assessable in Hong Kong
–  information/assessment issued by relevant financial and professional organisations

To facilitate the assessment to ascertain the enterprise has substantive business operations in Hong Kong, the enterprise may be required to submit the following supporting documents:

Data of the Applicant Enterprise Examples of Document
Business operations Commercial contracts, invoices, receipts, freight forwarding documents, bank records, records of purchase/sales of goods, office tenancy, water/electricity bills
Financial information Audited account, financial report, monthly bank statements, Profits Tax Returns and taxation assessment issued by the Inland Revenue Department
Information of Employees Mandatory Provident Fund records or approved retirement plan records, employees’ employment contract, salary payment record, staff identity documents

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