Doctor of Social Sciences, honoris causa (2012)
Mr Chiu’s hometown is Changzhou in Jiangsu Province. He read Sociology at the Hong Kong Baptist College between 1971 and 1973 before continuing his studies in Canada. Upon his return to Hong Kong in 1979, Mr Chiu embarked on a career in the real estate industry. By 2000 he was Executive Director of Cheung Kong (Holdings) Limited and two years later founded and became Chairman of ARA Asset Management Limited. Specializing in the management of public-listed real estate investment trusts and private real estate funds, this company, together with six of its subsidiaries currently listed in the stock exchanges in Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, command an asset portfolio exceeding US$20 billion.
These accomplishments have been widely recognized by his peers. Mr Chiu is renowned for his sharp business acumen and outstanding leadership, and was named “Director of the Year” by the Hong Kong Institute of Directors in 2010. ARA Asset Management Limited was named one of “Asia’s 200 Best under a Billion” by Forbes Asia in 2010 and 2011. In 2012 it received the Top Gold Award for the Best Managed Board (Mid Cap) from The Singapore Exchange (SGX) and the Singapore Institute of Directors.
Mr Chiu is a passionate advocate for community development. In Hong Kong he served as a member of the Government’s Advisory Committee on Multi-storey Building Management and as the convenor of Working Group on Unfair Provisions in the Deed of Mutual Covenant. He was also appointed as a member on the Government’s Supply Voltage Advisory Committee. He was an appointed Member of the Mongkok District Board for eight years (1988–1996). He recognizes the importance of cooperation and partnerships between communities. In 2008 he founded the Hong Kong Changzhou Trade Association (香港常州商會) to contribute to the development of Hong Kong and his hometown in the areas of trade, technology, and cultural exchange. Mr Chiu is also a current member of the Shanghai Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
Mr Chiu makes a profound difference to society through the advancement of educational opportunities. Holding a conviction that education is the single most important factor in the development of a country, and that knowledge changes lives, he has given generous support to universities in Hong Kong and Canada to establish scholarships/endowment funds and build campus facilities, and has funded the construction of schools in rural areas in mainland China. He has been a member of the Board of Governors of the HKBU Foundation since 2009, and generously supports institutional advancement through the Campus Master Plan and his funding of work on the asset protection of traditional Chinese medicine products and practices. Mr Chiu has contributed to environmental protection through his work as founding member and Asian region coordinator of The Roberta Bondar Foundation. This Canadian charity cultivates in all groups a sense of awe, respect and appreciation for all life forms that share planet Earth. To ensure the sustainability of his philanthropic endeavours, Mr Chiu established a family charitable foundation, the Pecan Foundation (眾富基金會), to further such good causes.
Mr Chairman, on behalf of the students, staff, and alumni of the Hong Kong Baptist University, it is a great privilege to present this citation for Mr Justin Chiu and to publically celebrate his leadership in the Asian real estate industry and his philanthropic acts for the advancement of community development, education, and environmental protection.