On March 6 last year, Financial Secretary Antony Leung Kam-chung gave his inaugural budget speech. It came at a trying time for the Hong Kong economy, faced with slumping growth, rising unemployment and a serious lack of confidence. A year later, politicians, economists and analysts - reflecting on Mr Leung's speech and what he has done since - have given him mostly mixed reviews. In his first blueprint, the financial chief talked of Hong Kong's challenges and the need to focus on four key industries, to integrate with the mainland, rein-in spending and raise revenue, all of which have become familiar government refrains. Has he delivered? Many are not so sure. Sin Chung-kai, the Democratic Party's spokesman on economic affairs, said: 'I would just give him a fair mark.' James Tien Pei-chun, chairman of the Liberal Party and an executive councillor, said he would rate Mr Leung's performance as average. 'The things that he wanted to do - some went out of his control, like his forecasts and expectations,' Mr Tien said. 'Unemployment went down a little bit, tourism went up a little bit, exports improved a little bit. But the overall wealth of Hong Kong people is going down.' Some of his promises and goals have been carried out, including a pledge to not introduce a sales tax. Others have yet to materialise but are on their way: an $18 land departure tax should be in place sometime this year. Other goals are too vague and expansive and it will be hard to determine whether they have succeeded or not. The main failure of Mr Leung's first Budget was the inability to rein-in the deficit, economists say. He predicted this would amount to about $45 billion by the end of the financial year this month. The latest figures for April-February show the shortfall to be $58.4 billion, with the fiscal reserves falling to $314 billion. Kevin Lai, an economist at National Australia Bank, said: 'He's already scored very low as far as controlling the deficit. Some of the deficit-beating features initiated have been defeated.' Mr Sin added: 'He's succeeded in alerting people to the budget problem but . . . he has not been successful in arriving at a compromise or consensus on how to tackle to the problem.' There has not been a significant improvement in the general economy either. During Mr Leung's tenure, unemployment surged to a record 7.8 per cent before retreating to 7.1 per cent, the same level as a year ago. Deflation has persisted for more than four years and retail sales continue to shrink. The only good news has been a pickup in third-quarter GDP growth to 3.3 per cent on a quarter-on-quarter basis. In his speech last year, Mr Leung talked about how the economy could be saved by promoting tourism, financial services, logistics and producer and professional services. Of these four, tourism has performed the best, thanks mainly to an influx of mainland visitors after visa restrictions were eased at the start of last year. In 2002, 16.6 million people visited Hong Kong, with more than a third coming from the mainland. Mike Moran, an economist at Standard Chartered Bank, said: 'Tourism has played an important part for Hong Kong's economy over the past years, and that will continue to be a key plank in Hong Kong's role in the region.' But Mr Moran said that for the three other industries, the details given by Mr Leung last year 'are kind of fluffy . . . Any convincing statistics for those sectors are hard to come by'. Hong Kong's port saw 6.6 per cent growth in throughput, making it the world's busiest. But in other areas of logistics, it is not so clear if the government has done a great deal for the industry. Mr Leung's press secretary, Raymond Tam, gave few hints on what to expect from this year's speech. The budget speech has been drafted by a speechwriter although Mr Tam said the financial secretary was still the 'mastermind' in terms of structure, substance and content. The last word goes to Mr Tien who thinks it will be tougher for Mr Leung this time around. 'I'm sure he's very frustrated. I sympathise with him,' he said.