MOTOROLA Semiconductors Hong Kong Ltd, winner of this year's Governor's Award for Industry: Environmental Performance is no stranger to public recognition. In 1989, the company's successes in the technical sphere were recognised by it winning the prestigious Governor's Award for Industry in Machinery/Equipment Design. The next year, the company was again honoured with the Governor's Award in the Productivity category. Now, with last night's presentation of the Environmental award, one may wonder: What's next for Motorola? Apart from getting on with what it does best - manufacturing leading-edge electronics parts and equipment - Motorola's stated mission is ''to become the premier environmentally-conscious company in Hong Kong, a leader in innovative environmental protection, practices and policies, consistent with its own corporate philosophy and the government's guidelines.'' Motorola's environmental policy is quite simple. It intends to conduct all its operations in a responsible manner, free from recognised hazards; respect the environment, health and safety of its employees, customers, suppliers and community neighbours; and comply with all applicable environmental, safety and industrial hygiene laws of Hong Kong. As part of its manufacturing processes, Motorola Hong Kong has electroplating operations at its headquarters in Silicon Harbour Centre, Taipo, and at its Kwai Fongplant in Kwai Chung. These operations discharge water from rinse points on the plater. The water contains high concentrations of heavy metal and has a low pH value (acidic). Motorola therefore faces a continuous challenge to upgrade its waste water treatment processes in conjunction with set government standards for effluents discharged into drainage and sewage systems, and inland and coastal waters. Targeted to achieve levels below the standard's minimum, a pilot test system was installed in the company's Kwai Fong plant in April this year. The system recycles waste water and produces de-ionised quality re-usable water. The success of this scheme hasbrought benefits that include: reduction of chemical costs by 35 per cent; capital investment pay-back time lowered to 18 months; a 60 per cent reduction in space required for waste treatment; annual water consumption savings of $360,000; improved electroplating and maintenance efficiency. From relatively humble beginnings 60-odd years ago, Motorola Inc of the United States is today a world leader in the design and manufacture of electronic components and equipment. The parent company founded Motorola Semiconductors Hong Kong Ltd in 1957 and currently the local units employ around 1,600 people, including 950 engineers, professionals and support staff. During its early years in the territory, Motorola was faced with many challenges, not the least of which was to train its employees to performtasks with which they were totally unfamiliar. But its patience and efforts in this respect have paid dividends. From the outset, business expanded at such a phenomenal rate that in 1982 Motorola acquired the huge Profit Industrial plant in Kwai Fong. This complex incorporates the most modern factory concepts for the manufacture of microprocessor products and, in addition, houses a test centre, engineering laboratories and the firm's regional Hong Kong and China sales offices. Further expansion came with the opening of Motorola's Silicon Harbour Centre in 1990. This vast, 326,000 sq ft, three-storey building stands on 3-hectare of land at Taipo Industrial Estate overlooking Tolo Harbour in the New Territories. The ultra-modern building houses Motorola's Asia Pacific headquarters and regional corporate centre. Among many high-technology activities undertaken there are the design and manufacture of integrated circuits and advanced semiconductors. The company's stated belief is that ''the meticulous, productive and strategic mentality of the East combined with the innovative, assertive and flexible thinking of the West, together create a synergy of ideas and working practices.'' This manifests itself in the strength of the Hong Kong organisation within the Asian sector where its relatively high degree of autonomy allows it to function in harmony with regional business philosophies and ideals. The company's parent was founded in 1928 by Paul V. Galvin. It was initially based in Chicago, Illinois, where it began by making battery eliminators under the name Galvin Manufacturing Corporation. The battery replacement device allowed consumers to operate their radio receivers directly from the domestic mains electricity supply instead of using the wet-cell batteries which in those days were needed to bring the early ''wireless'' models to life. Inventiveness and innovation became Motorola's watchword as the company thrust its way towards the future. Indeed, as early as the 1930s it had successfully commercialised car radios under the Motorola brand. It was a name that suggested both sound and motion, one with which its customers could readily identify. The company forged ahead in the research and development (R&D) of new products and services, many of which - although it was not generally realised at the time - heralded the fledgling post-World War II ''golden era'' of electronics. Motorola became such a household word that the name was adopted in 1947 as the firm's corporate title. Paul Galvin continued at the helm until his death in 1959, by which time the company's products and their applications had become leaders in the military, space and commercial communications fields. Expansion continued under the leadership of the founder's son, Robert Galvin, who in the 1960s shifted the firm's focus away from consumer electronics. Consistently at the leading edge of technology, Motorola has steadily enhanced its reputation in the design and manufacturing processes for the computer and related industries. One area of particularly rapid growth has been the cellular telephone businessin which the company has become a major global producer of subscriber units and related base equipment. Motorola's inexorable growth demanded that it progressively establish overseas manufacturing and sales subsidiaries. Parallel to this, it exported its own management and marketing philosophies as well. The firm lays great emphasis not only on the quality of its products but also customer satisfaction. To achieve its aims, Motorola devotes considerable time and money to the training and education of all its employees. This is essential if Motorola peopleare to be fully equipped with the manufacturing, marketing and technical skills needed to carry out their tasks. It also serves to ensure that the corporate name will be as well-known in the 21st century as it is today. The company ranks among the 50 largest industrial companies in the United States and has more than 100,000 employees world-wide. In 1991, it recorded sales totalling some US$11.34 billion. Motorola Inc's products include two-way radios, pagers and telepoint systems, cellular telephones, semiconductors, defence and aerospace electronics, automotive and industrial electronics, data communications and information processing and handling equipment. Its global investment in R & D is well over US$1 billion (about HK$7.73 billion) annually, representing almost 10 per cent of the company's sales revenues.