The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation was founded in Hong Kong on March 3, 1865, and in Shanghai one month later. In 1980, HSBC acquired 51 per cent of Marine Midland Bank, buying the rest in 1987. HSBC Holdings was established in Britain in 1991 as the parent of The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation ahead of its purchase of the UK-based Midland Bank and the impending 1997 transfer of sovereignty of Hong Kong from Britain to China.
No wheelchair access at revamped branch
The Hay Wah Building branch of HSBC, in Hennessy Road, Wan Chai, is being renovated.
The ATM machines, which used to be on the pavement outside the bank, have now been moved indoors. I understand this might have something to do with security, as well as with trying to prevent ATM users from obstructing pedestrians. However, I am disappointed to note that the new arrangement has now made it impossible for people in wheelchairs to reach the ATM machines, because customers must climb steps in order to get to them.
I have been a faithful customer of HSBC since 1993 and have, for the past five years, used the ATM machines at this branch not only to access cash but also to perform other banking services.
As I am a paraplegic and confined to a wheelchair, I can no longer get to the machines at this branch. I now have to travel out of my way to be able to bank with HSBC.
I wonder why, in this day and age, HSBC with its enormous profits cannot make a simple ramp for the disabled. But then why should HSBC really care if Hong Kong, supposedly a world-class city, doesn't seem to have any laws to ensure that all buildings are wheelchair- accessible?