Lantau Island Industry

HF: This article is the result of several people’s research into industrial development, lighthouses, log ponds, manufacturing, mining, reservoirs, salt, shipyards, tea, timber mills, transport, utilities and other related topics on Lantau Island.

If you can provide information on any of the subjects below, or add to the list, it would be good to hear from you. I can then gradually add to this framework to provide a  fuller picture with an acknowledgment of your contribution.

All linked articles are Indhhk unless otherwise stated.

Contributions from:-

AA Amelia Allsop
JC James Chan
SD Stephen Davies
HF Hugh Farmer
JH James Hayes
PEK Philip Edward Kenny
WWK Wong Wai King
RL Rico Lee
TM Tymon Mellor
FCM Fung Chi Ming
NM Namussi
TN Thomas Ngan
ES Eric Spain
DW Dan Waters
FW Frank Watson
AW Andrew Wood


Hong Kong Airlines’ headquarters are located at 7/F, Tat Tung Road, Tung Chung, Lantau

Big Buddha

IDJ The Construction of the Big Buddha, Lantau Island, completed 1993
HF The Construction of the Big Buddha, Lantau Island – further information

Chek Lap Kok Island

Several Contributors Chek Lap Kok Island industry, pre-airport

Charcoal production

JH: Extracted from James’ article Charcoal Burning in Hong Kong which was included in the RASHKB Journal Volume 11, 1971.

Charcoal Burning in HK RASHKB Vol 11 (1971) James Hayes Lantau snipped


HF NV Hollandsche Aannemings Maatschappij (HAM) – Dutch dredging company connected to several HK projects


Tai O Union Electric Company

IDJ/HF Tai O Union Electric Company – bought by CLP in 1955

Penny’s Bay Power Station

CLP website Penny’s Bay Power Station 

China Light and Power

AA CLP A Century of Light – how power was brought to Kowloon and the New Territories
Admin: Tai O stilt houses installed with solar panels- to be connected to CLP’s grid

Explosives Depot

IDJ/HF Kau Shat Wan 狗虱灣 , Lantau Island – government explosives depot


SD/HF Fan Lau Lighthouse, Lantau Island

Log Ponds

HF Yan O Wan Yan O Wan “Log Pond” and Luk Keng Tsuen Lumber Works, Lantau
PEK Yan O Wan “Log Pond”, Lantau – 1983 Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung film location


Chek Lap Kok Island

JC/TN Chu Lu Kuk / Chek Lap Kok Island Granite Quarry – early 19th century to 1960s?
IDJ/HF Kaolin Mine photo – near Laguna City, on Tsing Yi or Chek Lap Kok islands?

Sha Lo Wan Mine

TM Sha Lo Wan mine, Lantau Island, 1950s
HF Andrew Weir Shipping and Trading Co.Ltd (Bank Line) – connection to Sha Lo Wan Mine, Lantau
HF Far Eastern Prospecting And Development Corporation, Sha Lo Wan mine late 1950s

Mui Wo Silver Mine

AW The Silver Mine of Silver Mine Bay

TM Mui Wo Silver Mine Processing Plant

Admin Mui Wo Silver Mine – 1905 newspaper article

TM Mui Wo Silver Mine – Part One – The Owner

TM Mui Wo Silver Mine – Part Two The Mine

HF Ho A-mei – developer and owner of the silver mine, Mui Wo, and HK political activist

West Brother Island (Tai Mo To)

HF West Brother Island (Tai Mo To) Graphite Mine

Mui Wo


“In September 1967 the temporary pier at Silvermine Bay built by the Company was completed and opened for service.” Hongkong & Yaumati Ferry Co Ltd: Golden Jubilee 1923-1973, published by the company

Salt Production

Eric Spain remembers seeing some RAF aerial photographs which showed salt pans at Mui Wo [presumably immediately before, during or shortly after WW2?]  Eric thinks they may be in a HK government archive.
Frank Watson has found that in a 2005 interview with the then 82 year-old Mui Wo resident Wong Chau-fuk, Mr Wong states “The land beside the pier and the bus stop was originally the sea….there were some businessmen who set up a salt field nearby, but water kept seeping up out of the ground and the salt wouldn’t crystallize. I remember working there with my dad.  After the salt field closed we went back to farming.” Mr Wong was born around 1923, so it looks as if Eric’s suggestion is correct. However, more conclusive evidence is needed. A map showing Mui Wo around the end of WW2?
The above interview is at
NM at tried using the Hong Kong government map service but found the earliest aerial photo there of Mui Wo was from 1963.
See: Mui Wo salt pans, Lantau Island


HF: Reclamation ‘the only way to form land’, Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam says, defending HK$500 billion ‘Lantau Tomorrow Vision’ plan SCMP 12th October 2018


Shek Pik Reservoir

TM Shek Pik Reservoir – Construction
RL Construction and Opening of Shek Pik Reservoir, rare French film 1962
TM Shek Pik Water Scheme, HK Government Report, 1963
HF Shek Pik Reservoir – Tai O Road construction link to end of Tai O salt production
HF Shek Pik Reservoir construction – 2 submerged villages and 262 displaced villagers
JC Dragages Hong Kong – first HK projects, Kai Tak runway extension and Shek Pik reservoir


HF Shek Pik Reservoir – Tai O Road construction link to end of Tai O salt production

Sedan chairs

DW and FCM Sedan chair services on Lantau island
WWK Sedan Chairs at Tai O, Lantau Island


HF Cheoy Lee Shipyard, Penny’s Bay, Lantau 1964-2001

Steel – Stainless

HF 1963 “It was reported that a stainless steel plant capable of producing 20,000 tons per year of finished products would be built on Lantao [sic] Island to utilize the scrap formerly sold to Japan.” 
The Mineral Industry of Hong Kong, 1963, p1301

Tai O

HF “After World War Two, Tai O’s economy experienced many changes. In the 1950s ship building became an important industry, with nine shipbuilders operating in the village. In the 1960s light manufacturing businesses were established producing plastics, light bulbs, electronics and embroidery. As other parts of Hong Kong became more developed Tai O’s industries lost their competitiveness and eventually faded from view.”
Source: Old Tai O Police Station: The Evolution of a Centenary Monument, ed. TYC Kee et al, Community Project Workshop, HKU Faculty of Architecture, 2011


CD Tai O Salt Production
HF/IDJ Salt production, oldest industry in Hong Kong, Tai O
HF Shek Pik Reservoir – Tai O Road construction link to end of Tai O salt production
HF Salt Manufacture in Hong Kong – Jan 1940
HF Salt Manufacture in Hong Kong 1940s – 1967 RASHKB article

Shrimp Paste

HF Sing Lee Shrimp Sauce and Paste Factory, Tai O
HF Cheng Cheung Hing Shrimp Paste Factory, Tai O


HF Brook Bernacchi – tea estate Ngong Ping, and first Western resident on Lantau island

Timber Mill

HF Yan O Wan “Log Pond” and Luk Keng Tsuen Lumber Works, Lantau

This article was first posted on January 12th 2015.

Related Indhhk articles:

  1. Lamma Island Industry
  2. Chek Lap Kok Island industry, pre-airport
  3. Cheung Chau Island Industry
  4. Peng Chau Island industry

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