Challenge: Hong Kong’s excessive wine and spirits duties significantly limited consumer choice, encouraged illegal smuggling and reduced tax revenues for the city. The Hong Kong Wine & Spirits Industry Coalition (HKWSIC), a group of importers and distributors representing 80 leading brands, wanted to give the industry a voice and influence policy. 

Approach: APCO designed an integrated public affairs and strategic communication programme to forge new alliances and ensure Hong Kong’s most influential decision-makers heard HKWSIC’s key messages. Emphasis was placed on promoting Hong Kong’s international image, strengthening the catering and hospitality industries, and improving the overall quality of life.

Results: Following a significant outreach and engagement campaign, Hong Kong’s financial secretary reduced taxation on wine products by 50 percent. APCO’s outreach continued and the following year we designed and implemented another campaign that abolished wine tax in Hong Kong completely. HKWSIC was positioned as a critically influential industry organisation establishing relationships with Hong Kong’s business and political communities.

Results At A Glance: 
  • Wine taxes reduced 50% in first year
  • Wine taxes abolished in the second year
  • Hong Kong now boasts the lowest wine duties in the world
  • HKWSIC was positioned as one of the most influential industry organisations in its field
  • HKWSIC established important relationships with Hong Kong’s business and political communities 

From Our Client

"APCO’s knowledge and expertise helped us to navigate Hong Kong’s complex policy environment. Their assistance culminated in a positive result for the wine industry, local consumers and the economy as a whole."

Boris de Vroomen
Former Chairman
HKWSIC