(Photo by Pedro Fiuza/Xinhua)

Chinese businesswoman give millions to Portugal

Ming Hsu: “Just a sign of thanks and commitment towards Portugal” 

The biggest private help that Portugal received in the fight against COVID-19 came from a Taiwan-born citizen and Chinese passport holder named Ming Hsu. 

Last month, Ming Hsu made a donation of €4.6 million euros (about MOP40 million) in medical equipment, including 80 ventilators, one million masks, 22,000 protective suits, 100,000 pairs of gloves, 100,000 protective glasses, and 10,000 caps. 

In addition to this huge donation made by Reformosa, her luxury real-estate developer in Portugal, the businesswoman had offered, two weeks earlier, a set of medical protection materials to one of the main public hospitals in Lisbon. She organized a consortium of Portuguese-Chinese companies that have already collected more than €200,000 to deliver to Portuguese official entities. It also became known. 

Portuguese public opinion, including the media, was caught completely unnoticed and called it the ‘mystery donor.’ 

This was greatly contributed to by the fact that Ming Hsu never actually spoke to the media and that there was only one article about it, published precisely in Macau Business, when last year we reported that she donated €2 million (about MOP17,3 billion) to a public university in Lisbon (New School of Business and Economics). 

“We try to ensure the most vulnerable are not left behind.” 

“Reformosa donates this equipment, in all humility, because we are facing the most disruptive and lasting pandemic in recent history,” says Ms Hsu to Macau Business in a written response to some questions. 

“I believe that overcoming the devastating effects of COVID-19 and rehabilitating society will require harmonious cooperation between everyone: governments, civil society, companies, and industry.” That’s why she decided to contribute. 

“We have witnessed the altruistic dedication shown by health professionals around the world, including the Portuguese. Every day, they risk their lives to help those in need. By donating this equipment and thus supporting the populations, we try to ensure that in this moment of crisis, the most vulnerable are not left behind,” adds Ms Hsu. 

So, “in such an extraordinary period that we live in, compassion and mutual help cannot be empty words.” This donation from Reformosa is, the businesswoman emphasized, “just a sign of thanks and commitment towards Portugal that was only possible due to the close cooperation with the Portuguese Government, the Chinese Embassy in Portugal, the Lisbon City Council, the Portuguese Embassy in China, the Portuguese Ambassadors in China José Augusto Duarte, and the China in Portugal Cai Run. To all involved, we leave our most sincere thanks for making this action possible.” 

EPA/Julien de Rosa

“A lead supporter of several global non-profit organizations.” 

One of the questions posed by Macau Business to the press office of Reformosa wanted to know more about this woman’s profile. 

“Mrs. Ming Hsu has served on a number of corporate boards and has advised on investment management and initiatives for them,” they answered to us, saying she has been a lead supporter of several global non-profit organizations, “such as Orbis, where she sponsored the first full-service non-profit eye hospital and multiple clinics in Southern China to reduce the blind rate in less privileged areas. She is a long-term Sponsor to Massachusetts General Hospital (Harvard Medical Center) for medical research projects.” 

Hsu’s “commitment to education” has led her to several educational boards, including the Columbia Business School Board of Overseers and the Alfredo de Sousa Foundation Board of Trustees, which oversees the University de Lisboa, Nova School of Business and Economics in Portugal. In addition, “she had sponsored the creation of robotics labs in many Asian international schools to promote and help science and technology education and help build libraries at New York University and many other educational endeavours.  She is also a trustee of Metropolitan Museum in New York that she had helped numerous art and culture projects.”