Hong Kong’s approach to development has for too long prioritised demolishing and rebuilding instead of finding ways to preserve the city’s heritage. Choi Hung Estate has a special place in Hong Kong’s history and cries out for new ideas in urban planning.
For a “headquarters economy” to work, foreign corporations must be encouraged to connect with local industry and local talent, and strengthen the local supply chain. True competitiveness lies in having a strong local economy.
To draw visitors and revive its economy, Hong Kong must recognise that a major part of its selling point is its unique history and culture, including historic buildings, neon signs and the like. Preserving Hong Kong history will help the city tell the Hong Kong story well.
In a city that never sleeps, instead of looking to organise new nightlife attractions, it makes more sense to highlight the ones that already exist as recognisable parts of local culture.
The death of the pop star in Hong Kong, and that of an online influencer in Macau, have sparked discussion of a topic that is usually avoided.The goal should be an environment where these issues can be discussed like any other health concern and where there is greater access to mental health support.
The government is going all out to deal with the shortage of workers in various sectors, but opposition from unions suggests the need for caution. Rather that focusing on the number of available workers, it would be more effective to improve working conditions to make people more eager to come the city for work.
Legal measures will merely provide temporary relief as they are only useful when both parties recognise what represents wrongdoing. The government must look deeper into the causes of anti-mainland sentiment in Hong Kong and take seriously the difficulties faced by tourism sector workers.
The approach to the AI-powered chatbot adopted by the city’s universities reflects Hong Kong’s lack of preparedness to embrace new technology. The government should not only be setting up a regulatory and policy framework but also demonstrate it is capable of taking a risk.
Organising a series of food fairs is a good starting point but insufficient to make up for all Hong Kong has lost over the past three years. The city’s happiness lies not in hosting large-scale international events but in everyday businesses, especially street food outlets.
While Hong Kong did well during the pandemic, there are several unaddressed issues that must be resolved as the city gets back on its feet. Rather than restore the status quo, leaders must fix the city’s healthcare infrastructure and heavy reliance on outside demand.
Hong Kong is coinciding the border reopening with a huge surge in Covid-19 infections in the mainland. After waiting years for quarantine-free travel, surely it can wait just a few more months until cases have peaked.
The government has its sights set on developing more glamorous, hi-tech sectors, but it must think carefully about Hong Kong’s place in an already established supply chain. Moreover, neglecting home-grown innovation and industries does not send the best message.
A lack of clear targets for the reopening of Hong Kong over the past few years has bruised both public and business confidence. To restore trust, the government must communicate effectively with both sectors.
Instead of trying to convince foreign governments that ‘one country, two systems’ is alive and well, Hong Kong can prove it by reviving global business ties. Winning back businesses and talent will take more than empty assurances, though; further concrete steps towards reopening are needed.
Reopening the border is a delicate process that must take into account public health, political pressures and international factors. An outbreak caused by reopened borders would be a public health and political disaster, so managing such an eventuality must be part of any plan.
The departure of the Jumbo Floating Restaurant would be a sad continuation of the trend of post-World-War-II local history disappearing. This is about an outdated antiquities assessment process, preserving Hong Kong’s collective memory and establishing the future of tourism in the city.
Pouring money into developing new technology without strengthening the market it is destined for means many tech start-ups won’t survive. What is needed is a self-sustaining system that connects start-ups and research institutes with industry leaders and consumers, so that all needs are met.
Running to Beijing for help must not be Hong Kong’s only option. The city must shore up its pandemic defences by plugging its shortages in medical and other infrastructure, and setting up a routine quick response system.
Hongkongers overseas are finding it harder to return home, given the government’s strict travel restrictions and increasingly expensive hotel rooms. For many family reunions for Lunar New Year are now a big financial burden.
As public frustration grows, the government’s twin pushes for vaccination and stricter Covid-19 measures will only work if there is a clear plan for a return to normal life. However, its desire to reopen the border with the mainland is a stumbling block.