my third son

“In Asia, our traditional values encourage and even demand that wealth and means pass through lineage as an imperative duty.

I urge and hope to persuade all of us in Asia that if we are in a position to do so, that we transcend this traditional belief. Our reorientation of perspective today could bring forth great hope and promises for the future. I set up a foundation that I refer to as my third son. This idea dawns on me like enlightenment, not coming from any books. Since 1980, I have dedicated to this son not only my assets but all my heart, and I believe that my colleagues in the Foundation and my family are – and will remain – as committed as I am to serve his causes, reshaping destiny through education and seeking efficient initiatives that can forever help those in need.” Li Ka-shing – 2006


Mr. Li Ka-shing believes that the Asian culture of giving should evolve into philanthropy with a social impact that can develop a better society and to inspire societal improvement.

With this in mind, we have three main focuses at the Foundation:

a new
culture of giving

To nurture a new philanthropic attitude in Asia

support education reform initiatives

To create a paradigm shift that develops positive and sustainable change

advance medical research and services

To foster a healthier world by assisting research and services

About Our Founder

Mr. Li Ka-shing was born in Chaoan, Chaozhou in 1928. Early adversities in his life, which included being forced to quit school and fleeing to Hong Kong due to the war as well as his father’s passing from illness, taught him lessons in childhood that created a blueprint for life. Mr Li was determined to start his own business with technologies he developed and to see education and medical philanthropy as part of a life-long mission to promote social welfare and human progress.

In 1950, Mr Li established Cheung Kong Industries, manufacturing plastic products in quantities made possible by his new injection molding technology. Grasping the trend of rapid urban development, in 1960, he ventured into property development and had Cheung Kong Holdings Limited listed on the stock exchange in 1972. By the end of that decade, he had become the first Hong Kong Chinese to take the helm of a large foreign-funded conglomerate by acquiring Hutchison Whampoa, a company he took global. Today, his businesses span more than 50 countries and employ 300,000 individuals.

Mr Li retired as Chairman of the Cheung Kong Group in 2018 to focus on the work of the Li Ka Shing Foundation.

Justice of the Peace
Grand Officer of the Order Vasco Nunez de Balboa (Panama)
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Entrepreneur of the Millennium (The Times and Ernst & Young UK)
Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE)
Commandeur de l'Ordre de Léopold (Belgium)
International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award (University of Manitoba)
Grand Bauhinia Medal of the Hong Kong SAR
Commandeur de la Légion d'Honneur (France)
Grande Ufficiale Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana (Italy)
Malcolm S. Forbes Lifetime Achievement Award (Forbes)
Lifetime Achievement Award for Philanthropy (PRC Ministry of Civil Affairs)
Presidential Award (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc.)
Special Honorary Award for Economic Contribution 2007 (CCTV)
The Robert H. Alway Lifetime Achievement Award (Stanford University)
Hong Kong Business Awards "Lifetime Achievement Award" (presented by DHL and the South China Morning Post)
Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy (The Carnegie Corporation)
The Berkeley Medal (The University of California, Berkeley)
Honorary Degrees
Honorary Doctor of Laws degree (University of Hong Kong)
Honorary Doctor of Laws degree (University of Calgary)
Honorary Doctorate degree (Peking University)
Honorary Doctor of Social Science degree (The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology)
Honorary Doctor of Laws degree (The Chinese University of Hong Kong)
Honorary Doctor of Social Science degree (City University of Hong Kong)
Honorary Doctor of Laws degree (University of Cambridge)
Honorary Doctor of Social Sciences degree (The Open University of Hong Kong)
Civic Posts
Member of the Drafting Committee for the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR)
Hong Kong Affairs Adviser
Member of the Preliminary Working Committee for the Preparatory Committee of the HKSAR
Member of the Preparatory Committee for the HKSAR
Member of the Selection Committee for the government of the HKSAR
Member of the International Business Advisory Council of the UK