Hong Kong unveils new measures to tackle tough economic situation

Andrew Cummings
February 27, 2020

Delivering Hong Kong's annual budget Wednesday, Chan said the HKSAR government will adopt an expansionary fiscal stance and make optimal use of its fiscal reserves to implement counter-cyclical measures, with the objective of "supporting enterprises, safeguarding jobs, stimulating the economy and relieving people's burden", so as to help Hong Kong tide over the difficulties.

The downturn in tourism and business activity from the virus outbreak has compounded the troubles brought on by months of often violent protests past year. Hong Kong's ongoing economic recession has contributed to the first deficit for the South Asian city in 15 years. Hong Kong authorities have announced several measures, including school closures and work-from-home arrangements.

To promote growth of high-tech industries, the government plans to spend 2 billion Hong Kong dollars ($250 million) to convert an old factory in the city's outskirts into a microelectronics center, and to earmark 3 billion Hong Kong dollars ($380 million) to expand the city's Science Park. The coronavirus epidemic that started in China hasn't only hurt Hong Kong, but it has spread to more than 30 countries and affected over 80,000 people. The Chinese territory has 81 confirmed cases of the virus and reported 2 deaths so far.

Another Hong Kong event has been forced to re-schedule because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The other additional case confirmed on Tuesday involves a 33-year-old man, the son of a 62-year-old patient who has been confirmed as Hong Kong's 72nd COVID-19 case.

"Since January 2020, Hong Kong has come under the threat posed by the novel coronavirus outbreak, which further dealt a blow to the economy".

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