The necessity of housing red wine in a wine cellar and having enough space to do was the missing link to pave way for being a global leading in the business. When the Hong Kong government in 2008 announced that the duty on alcohol would be eliminated immediately when it had been at 40 percent, many anticipated the red wine trade would boom but not as many recognized the fundamentally importance that the wine cellar needed to be in the picture. What resulted was an explosion in the red wine and wine cellar business which exploded into global leadership in the industry.
In order to penetrate the market, they need a good wine facility to protect the quality of their wine so this is why in the last few years; the growth of wine storage in Hong Kong has been very fast. But a lack of storage place in the densely populated city of seven million prompted entrepreneurs to turn vacant factories into wine warehouses. Many of these facilities have included changing factories in warehouse buildings into a wine storage equipped with motion detectors, chiller rooms, humidity monitors and automated temperature control.
Half of the facilities are factories-turned-wine warehouses. Wine cellars need to be certified in order to be wine storage facilities. Hong Kong's potential in the wine business has been boosted by its ideal geographical location, world-class airport, global transportation connectivity and transparent custom procedures.
The territory’s wine drinking has boomed especially at the premium end of the market. This was to be expected and the city's wine imports have skyrocketed while mainland Chinese snap up vintages at whopping huge prices with even a bottle of 1869 Chateau Lafite-Rothschild breaking a world-record price of 232,000 US dollars at an auction.
The Chinese financial hub is now surpassed London and New York to be the largest centre for wine auctions in the world, another aspect of the industry that has boomed in this trend. But people did not realize how much experience Hong Kong had already and even back in 2000, already then at least 15 percent of the world's rare and fine wines were owned by Hong Kong people. Another fledgling business is the annual Hong Kong International Wine and Spirits Fair which draws hundreds of exhibitors from around the globe each year.
One thing is still certain, this industry is continuing to boom, with financial difficulties in the Western countries, Hong Kong with its strategic location close to China’s elite and well to do has to greatest opportunity to continue to outpace it’s competition looking ahead.