Move to benefit the rich

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 30 March, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 30 March, 1999, 12:00am

Tax analysts have estimated that the average worker, with an annual income of about $133,320, will only receive a 10 per cent rebate of $86.

This contrasts dramatically with the upper echelon taxpay ers such as Hongkong Telecom chief executive Linus Cheung Wing-lam, Swire Group executive director Peter Sutch and Fi nancial Secretary Donald Tsang Yam-kuen.

Mr Cheung's annual salary is reported to be $9.35 million, which means he is entitled to a rebate of $140,000.

Mr Sutch's annual income is estimated at $12 million. He will receive a rebate of $180,000. As for Mr Tsang, he can expect a rebate of $36,864 as he makes $2.64 million a year.

Hong Kong enjoys one of the lowest tax rates in the world with a salary tax of 15 per cent and a corporate tax of 16 per cent.

Hong Kong's tax structure is unique in that only a very small sector of the working popula tion pays most of the SAR's in come tax.

About two million working people do not pay any income tax. A married couple with two children do not have to pay tax if their combined income is less than $23,000 per month.