Hong Kong Pledges HK$120 Billion in Assist as Economic system…

Hong Kong’s Monetary Secretary Paul Chan pledged HK$120 billion ($15.5 billion) of fiscal help for an financial system slowly rising from two years of recession.

The counter-cyclical measures will assist to stabilize the financial system and relieve folks’s burden, Chan mentioned in his finances speech to the Legislative Council on Wednesday. The financial system is about to develop three.5%-5.5% in 2021 in contrast with a 6.1% contraction final 12 months, he mentioned.

Click on right here for our reside weblog of the finances speech.

After final 12 months’s bumper stimulus to help the financial system via the pandemic, Hong Kong is now focusing on reining in a file finances deficit. Chan has already signaled there received’t be the sort of money handouts offered to residents final 12 months, with help prone to be focused towards companies and people who want it probably the most.

Town’s financial system has shrunk two years in a row already amid political and social unrest in 2019 earlier than the pandemic hit. Town’s consumption industries, from eating places to retailers and tourism, have been notably onerous hit with retail gross sales plummeting and unemployment surging to the very best in additional than 16 years.

Hong Kong’s Key Fiscal Stimulus Measures in 2020
February HK$30 billion Assist to Hospital Authority, retail subsidy
HK$120 billion HK$10,000 money handout
April HK$137.5 billion Wages help subsidy
September HK$24 billion Catering, tourism subsidies
December HK$6.four billion Catering subsidy
Complete HK$317.9 billion

The federal government introduced nearly HK$320 billion in virus stimulus final 12 months to help industries and the financial system, centered on a HK$10,000 money handout to residents and a wage subsidy program to stem job losses. A repeat of such measures is unlikely, in line with economists.