Government launches enhancement measures for Technology Voucher Programme

The Innovation and Technology Commission launched on 1st of April, 2020 enhancement measures for the Technology Voucher Programme (TVP) to further assist enterprises and organisations in making use of technology to improve their business operations and enhance their competitiveness.

The Government’s funding ratio for each TVP project will be raised from two-thirds to three-quarters. The funding ceiling per applicant will be increased from $400,000 to $600,000 and the maximum number of approved projects will also be increased from four to six.

Under the Innovation and Technology Fund, the TVP aims to subsidise local enterprises and organisations to use technological services and solutions to improve productivity, or upgrade or transform their business processes.

What is Technology Voucher Programme?

TVP aims to subsidise non-listed local enterprises in using technological services and solutions to improve productivity, or upgrade or transform their business processes.

Since 1 April 2020, the Government has further enhanced the TVP. The Government’s funding ratio in each approved project has been raised from two-thirds to three-quarters. The funding ceiling per applicant has been increased from $400,000 to $600,000 and the maximum number of approved projects has also been increased from four to six.

Technology Voucher Programme

Who are eligible to apply?

Local entities (except listed enterprises) fulfilling the following requirements are eligible to apply for funding under the TVP:

  • Registered in Hong Kong under the Business Registration Ordinance or
  • Incorporated and registered in Hong Kong under the Companies Ordinance; or
  • Established in Hong Kong by relevant ordinances as statutory bodies; AND
  • Not a government subvented organisation* or subsidiary of any government subvented organisation*; AND
  • With substantive business operation in Hong Kong which is related to the project under application at the time of application.

* Details are available on the TVP website.

What kind of projects will be funded by TVP?

TVP supports projects in the form of technological services and solutions which could improve productivity, or upgrade or transform the business processes of the applicant. A list of typical technological services and/or solutions covered by TVP is at Annex B of the Guidance Notes for Applications.

How can I use the funds from TVP?

The approved funding from TVP can be used to cover the following:

  • Technology Consultancy – the applicant may engage a technology consultant to provide external consultancy for conducting the project under application.
  • Purchase, rental or subscription of customised equipment/hardware, software and technological services or solutions that form an essential part of the project.
  • Purchase, rental or subscription of off-the-shelf/readily available equipment/hardware, software and technological services or solutions that form an essential part of the project. In general, the costs of such equipment/ hardware/ software/ services or solutions should constitute no more than 50% of the project cost.
  • Project auditing for projects with approved funding exceeding $50,000. The maximum audit fee to be counted towards the total project cost is $3,000.

Normal business operating costs will not be funded under TVP.

What is the funding amount?

Funding up to $600,000 for each eligible applicant will be provided on a 3 (Government):1 (enterprise) matching basis. The applicant must contribute no less than one quarter of the total approved project cost in cash. In other words, funding of no more than three-quarters of the actual project cost will be provided to an applicant.

Subject to the cumulative funding ceiling of $600,000, up to six projects from an applicant may be approved. To ensure proper focus on project implementation, an applicant is not allowed to undertake more than one TVP project at the same time. Expenditure items under an approved TVP project shall not receive funding support from other local public funding sources.

Is there any restriction on the project duration?

Each project should normally be completed within 12 months.

What is the vetting mechanism?

Upon receipt of an application, ITC will check its eligibility and conduct a preliminary screening. ITC may also seek clarification or supplementary information from the applicant if necessary. Eligible applications will be considered by the TVP Committee while ineligible applications will be returned to the applicant. Applications supported by the Committee will be submitted to the Commissioner for Innovation and Technology (CIT) for approval of funding.

What are the vetting criteria?

Each eligible application will be assessed based on individual merits and considered on a case-by-case basis. The assessment criteria include

  • relevance of the proposed project to the applicant’s business – the project should have good prospects of enhancing its competitiveness through improving productivity, cost reduction or efficiency enhancement, upgrading/improving/ transforming business processes.
  • reasonableness of the budget – assessment with reference to market prices of the technologies in question as known to the TVP Committee or ITC will be made. Individual items of expenditure must also be essential and directly related to the implementation of the project.
  • reasonableness of the implementation details – consideration may include whether concrete project deliverables and outcomes have been set. The implementation details should also be realistic taking into account factors such as the complexity of the technology and the project duration.
  • adverse record of consultants and/or service provider(s) as known to the TVP Committee and ITC if available.

How to apply for funding?

An entity should register as a user and submit its application through the Technology Voucher Programme Funding Administrative System. If you would like to apply for a Subsidy, we can guide you through the application process.

 

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