Distinguished Guest Lecture

Adjunct Professor the Hon Matthew Cheung Kin-chung speaks about the challenges and opportunities arising from the ageing of Hong Kong’s population

Cheung Kin Chung
Cheung Kin Chung

Prof the Hon Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, GBM, GBS, JP, Adjunct Professor of Lingnan University’s Asia-Pacific Institute of Ageing Studies and former Chief Secretary for Administration of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government (2017-2021), shed light on the ageing of Hong Kong’s population and its challenges and opportunities at the Distinguished Guest Lecture on 6 November. Prof Cheung said that he was honoured to be invited to share his insights on retirement protection and active ageing. Drawing on his almost 50 years of experience working for the government and serving Hong Kong, he hoped to bring thought-provoking discussions to Lingnan University’s faculty and students.

Prof Cheung emphasised that ageing presents a considerable challenge to social well-being, and pointed out that active ageing policies should address four issues facing senior citizens: finance, health, social connections and life goals. The Government Public Transport Fare Concession Scheme for the Elderly and Eligible Persons with Disabilities (commonly known as “$2 Scheme”) is, according to him, a highly effective and popular elderly-friendly measure that encourages senior citizens to be mobile, venture out more often, stay socially connected and even take up employment where appropriate, thus saving living expenses and augmenting their income.

He also pointed out that with the rise of the middle class, quite a number of senior citizens are financially self-sufficient and have considerable consuming power. They create business opportunities for products and services in tourism, leisure and recreation, healthcare, insurance and others, thereby reinforcing economic growth and opening up the “silver economy”.

Prof Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, GBM, GBS, JP

Prof Matthew Cheung Kin-Chung worked for almost 50 years in the Hong Kong government (from 1972 to 2021) and is well-known serving as the Chief Secretary for Administration of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government from 2017 to 2021. Before that, he worked as Secretary of Labour and Welfare from 2007 to 2017 and in other senior positions. These included Deputy Judiciary Administrator, Deputy Head, Central Policy Unit, Deputy Secretary for Education and Manpower, Commissioner for Labour, Director of Education and Permanent Secretary for Economic Development and Labour. This amply reflects his extensive and rich experience in strategic planning, policy formulation and implementation in labour, manpower, social welfare, education and other portfolios.

As Chief Secretary for Administration, he chaired the high-level Commission on Poverty, Youth Development Commission, Commission on Children, Human Resources Planning Commission, Steering Committee on Ethnic Minorities, International Business Committee and Fight Crime Committee, among others.