Hong Kong to spend $15.4 billion in fiscal measures to stabilise virus-ravaged economic system

Hong Kong to spend $15.4 billion in fiscal measures to stabilise virus-ravaged economic system

Finance Minister Paul Chan predicted that in comparison with the financial contraction of 6.1% final 12 months, the economic system is ready to develop 3.5% to five.5% this 12 months

Hong Kong to spend $15.4 billion in fiscal measures to stabilise virus-ravaged economy

Hong Kong Finance Minister Paul Chan, heart, attends a press convention on price range for 2021-22 in Hong Kong, Wednesday, Feb, 24, 2021. AP

Hong Kong: Hong Kong will introduce 120 billion Hong Kong {dollars} ($15.4 billion) in fiscal measures to assist companies and residents impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, because it seems in direction of financial development later this 12 months following a recession in 2020.

The measures — which embrace tax reduction, loans for the unemployed and consumption vouchers — are aimed toward stabilizing the economic system, Hong Kong Finance Minister Paul Chan mentioned in a price range speech Wednesday. He forecast the economic system is ready to develop 3.5 p.c to five.5 p.c this 12 months, in comparison with the financial contraction of 6.1 p.c in 2020.

The price range for 2021 “goals to alleviate the hardship and strain brought on by the financial downturn and the epidemic,” Chan mentioned.

Unemployed residents can get loans capped at 80,000 Hong Kong {dollars} ($10,300) in a program that postpones funds for the primary 12 months and prices one p.c curiosity. The measures come after Hong Kong final week reported a 7 p.c jobless charge between November and January, the very best since April 2004.

Vouchers value 5,000 Hong Kong {dollars} ($645) may also be issued in instalments to residents to spice up consumption. Companies and people may also obtain tax reduction.

Chan mentioned that Hong Kong’s fiscal deficit is at a report excessive after the federal government final 12 months spent 300 billion Hong Kong {dollars} ($38.7 billion) on supporting measures, together with a money handout to residents and wage subsidies for companies.

He additionally mentioned that mainland China’s economic system was “basically sound” regardless of uncertainties from the epidemic and in US-China relations. Hong Kong, as a semi-autonomous Chinese language metropolis, will profit from this.

“Within the medium time period, Hong Kong will proceed to learn from the continuing growth of the mainland and the shift in international financial gravity from West to East,” Chan mentioned.

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