The Chamber was founded in 1861 and had the first meeting at the former Hong Kong Club.
The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce was formed in 1861, merely 20 years after the city of Hong Kong was founded. Our original membership consisted of 62 companies and banks. At the inaugural meeting 150 years ago, the Chamber's role was clearly set out:
"The object of the Chamber shall be to watch over and protect the general interests of Commerce, to collect information on all matters of interest to the Mercantile Community, and to use every means within its power for the removal of evils, the redress of grievances, and the promotion of the common good; to communicate with authorities and other thereupon; to form a code of practice whereby the transaction of business may be simplified and facilitated; to receive references; and to arbitrate between disputants -- the decisions in such references to be recorded for future guidance."
Today, we take pride in our strong membership base of around 4000, and the spirit of the Chamber's original objective remains, as demonstrated in our mission statement: "To promote, represent and safeguard the interests of the Hong Kong business community." In short, we help our members do business.
Fortnightly "market reports and price current" bulletins started to be sent to members.
Over 16,000 people attended the first large scale Good Citizen Award Presentation Ceremony in Tse Wan Shan (慈雲山) in 1974.
A meeting of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong in session in 1965. The Chamber is the first chamber of commerce in Hong Kong having a representative in LegCo. The first Legco Representative was T Jackson, who served from 1884 to 1887.
The first Chamber delegation of Chinese members to China in October 1979.