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  • October 25, 2014
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  1. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    Tsang's vision of Hong Kong's future is severely out of focus

    Posted Feb 27th 2014, 01:23am by Tom Holland

    ... To fund all that building, the government ring-fenced its income from land sales and lease modifications and earmarked it for spending only on capital works projects. The idea was a roaring ... income to meet welfare needs. "Land premium is too volatile to be reliable revenue to fund recurrent expenditure on the long term," he argued. "More significantly … after paying ...

  2. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    Claims for economic freedom index simply don't stand up

    Posted Jan 15th 2014, 01:30am by Tom Holland

    ... years heading Heritage's league table of economic freedom, Hong Kong would have risen up the global rankings of income per capita. You might, but you would be disappointed. In 1994, the year Heritage first compiled its index, Hong Kong ranked a respectable 15th on the International Monetary Fund's table of economies by GDP per capita. With an income per head of US$22,482 ...

  3. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    It's not heresy to expect grand projects to pay for themselves

    Posted Feb 28th 2014, 01:01am by Tom Holland

    ... less and less as the population ages. Remove this artificial distinction between capital and recurrent revenue, Monitor suggested. Collect land premium as regular income streams rather than ... with that first. The scheme wouldn't work, say critics, because current lease-holders would oppose like fury any attempt to collect a regular land income from them. And if the government got around ...

  4. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    We don't need a Future Fund. The future is already upon us

    Posted Mar 05th 2014, 01:34am by Tom Holland

    ... problem". Similarly, they reject outright the idea that the government should switch to collecting its land revenues as regular income streams in order to fund recurring spending on health ... should set up a "Future Fund". This new account should be seeded with the HK$220 billion held by the Land Fund. In addition, the government should siphon off a percentage of its income ...

  5. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    The essential financial reform Beijing cannot afford to ignore

    Posted Jan 28th 2014, 01:27am by Tom Holland

    ... of years, China's output of grain per farm-worker rose by almost 20 per cent. Incomes rose, and rural per capita consumption climbed 24 per cent. After years of lagging behind, the living ... of their business income tax revenues to the central government, the abolition of the agricultural tax blew a major hole in local government finances. Aware of the problem, Beijing offered revenue transfers ...

  6. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    How to eradicate poverty - at least by the official definition

    Posted Oct 03rd 2013, 12:00am by Tom Holland

    ... than the median household income shall be considered poor. In household income per capita terms, that's roughly HK$3,600 a month. At that rate, one million Hongkongers are classed as poor, ... be to impose a punitive 100 per cent marginal income tax rate on anyone with a household income greater than, say, HK$15,000 a month. The proportion of households earning less than HK$4,000 a month has ...

  7. Business - Economy - MONITOR

    Immigration and reclamation won't raise living standards

    Posted Feb 18th 2014, 04:34am by Tom Holland

    ... household consumption spending as a proxy for household income, then Hongkongers are considerably better off than their Singaporean peers. Jake noted that Hong Kong people spend an average ...

  8. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    To think clearly, our officials should stand on their heads

    Posted Jan 20th 2014, 12:15am by Tom Holland

    ... and suggests an altogether more helpful solution. If the government's problem is that its land income comes in the form of volatile lumps of capital, then the solution is not to ring-fence them ... of spreading its land income over the entire lifetime of property projects. Rather than levying a one-off land premium, the government could charge leaseholders an annual ground rent for the duration ...

  9. Business - Comment - MONITOR

    China's urbanisation policy is based on flawed thinking

    Posted Jul 30th 2013, 12:00am by Tom Holland

    ... and infrastructure for country-dwellers As a result, reason China's planners, urbanisation will both lift per capita incomes, driving economic growth, and boost household spending, rebalancing ... they built a model relating income growth to urbanisation rates, as well as to a range of other factors, including education standards, prevalence of industry, extent of trade and quality ...

  10. Business - China Business - MONITOR

    Urbanisation not the cure-all China's leaders are hoping for

    Posted Jul 03rd 2013, 12:00am by Tom Holland

    ... Rising household incomes are touted, but construction expectations may be built on shaky ground and it's no sure bet moved farmers will benefit Urbanisation not the cure-all ... on at a handsome profit. The displaced farmers are supposed to receive compensation, but if the loss of their land leaves them without a regular income, the urbanisation process will leave them worse off, ...




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