Economists dismissed the Government's stimulus package as being ineffective in the face of global economic forces. Professor Richard Ho Yan-ki, dean of the faculty of business at City University, said: 'We are talking about a very big crisis here - and the Government is talking about a cable car to Ngong Ping.' It was not only the Asian financial crisis that was hitting the local economy, the experts said. Factors ranging from tension between India and Pakistan to fears of a crash on Wall Street had all come into play. Ian Perkin, chief economist of the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, said the most important question was the impact of the Government's big-ticket spending that would start feeding into the economy at the end of the year. 'Looking down the list of measures, they are limited in scope - not that they could have done much else,' Mr Perkin said. He said that although businesses welcomed easier travel for Taiwanese - some of whom will be business executives - and the technical measures to improve the banking system, they would not counter greater economic forces. Professor Ho said the moves on the property market indicated a further shift away from free-market principles. The professor is also vice-chairman of the Hong Kong Policy Research Institute, which on Thursday recorded a slight drop in its Free Market Index, blaming it on the Chief Executive's 'overbearing' plans for more housing. Professor Ho said that the property element of the seven-point package indicated the Government was moving towards active involvement in the housing market, hitting speculators at the top of the cycle and helping them at the bottom. 'They seem very ad hoc measures,' he said.