Hongkong International Coin Convention & Antique Watch Fair

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Insights

Ma Tak Wo, Former Managing Director of HICC

It has been 37 years since I first founded the “Hongkong International Coin Convention”, now the “Hongkong International Coin Convention & Antique Watch Fair” (HICC), in 1982.

It was a time when China’s economic reform had not yet taken place, and markets for Chinese antiques and modern commemorative coins were dominated by overseas players. Coin collecting was not yet a familiar concept for the Mainland China public, let alone the idea of holding a coin convention in the region.

When the HICC began as the first coin convention in Hong Kong, it truly marked a new chapter in numismatic history. Since then It has become a bridge that connects the market in mainland China with the international market.

Over the years, countless fascinating and valuable collectibles have been traded at the HICC. Apart from coins and banknotes, the HICC also showcases other luxury items such as watches, jewellery and antiques. It has undoubtedly made a major contribution to Hong Kong’s role in  Asia’s collectible coin market. Today, the HICC is popular among global exhibitors, collectors and dealers.

It was my privilege to serve as Managing Director of the HICC, and I am honoured to have had the opportunity to contribute to the development of Asia’s collectible coin market. Throughout the past 30 years, I have witnessed the market changing and growing.

At the beginning of China’s economic development, most of the domestic antique coins and modern commemorative coins were sold to overseas markets. However, with the opening of the domestic economy to foreign investment, and the vast improvement in the income and quality of life of Chinese people, the Chinese collectible coin market started to flourish. Today, China has developed into one of the largest collectible coin markets in the world.

It’s great to see many rare and valuable Chinese coins, which were previously sold to foreign collectors, are now being bought back by Chinese people. China is now the largest market for collectible coins. I believe that, with China’s growing population and income, the country’s market leading position will be further enhanced.

It is notable that, like most Asian regions, tariffs are imposed on collectible coins imported to mainland China. Thus Hong Kong, as a free port, will certainly remain the best venue for coin conventions and auctions in the foreseeable future. As Asia’s only duty-free coin and antique watch show, the HICC is devoted to continuing to serve as a bridge that connects domestic and foreign collectors, offering them a premier platform to buy and sell coins, banknotes, antique watches, jewelry and other vintage items.

I have spent the majority of my career helping the HICC grow and flourish, and have been looking for successors for some time now. I am glad to announce that a reliable, energetic and trustworthy new team – including Mr. Sam Hung, Mr. Simon Wong and Mr. Wayne Wong – is going to take over the baton. Having developed the Hong Kong Watch Guild Show into a reputable platform with more than 350 display cabinets and more than a thousand visitors, their achievements are well recognised. I am confident that the HICC is in good hands.

My motto is “treat others with sincerity, and you will be treated the same in return.” I hope that they will find it as inspiring as I do. I believe that, under their leadership, the HICC will continue to offer the best to Hong Kong’s collectible coin market. And, with your support, Hong Kong will continue to thrive and prosper on the international stage.

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