The Hong Kong Productivity Council will officially launch its Asian Benchmarking Clearinghouse (ABC) next month. The aim of the ABC, which begins on October 8, is to 'promote, integrate and disseminate benchmarking activities for organisations in Asia to share knowledge, and experience best practices', the council said yesterday. The council is setting up the ABC even though another operator, Hong Kong Benchmarking Clearinghouse (HBC), offers similar services. Council general manager Edmund Sung Shiu-lun said the two benchmarking operations had different networking sources. 'HBC is targeting local companies but ABC is trying to see if best practices from other Asian countries will be of advantage to Hong Kong companies,' he said. 'Besides, ABC will be the only benchmarking clearing house in Hong Kong which will join forces with the American Productivity and Quality Centre, Australia Quality Council and the European Foundation of Quality Management, thus making it the first global alliance with membership from different continents.' Asked if ABC would work with HBC or even merge, Mr Sung said it was a possibility. 'We are actually talking to HBC so the issue is still 'out'. The results of our talks might come out very soon,' he said.