Hong Kong Budget 2018-2019

Paul Chan’s Hong Kong budget shows team spirit leads Carrie Lam’s government

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 07 March, 2018, 4:23pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 07 March, 2018, 10:12pm

The first budget of the government of Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor was announced on February 28.

It is believed that Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po’s philosophy is in line with the chief executive’s new fiscal philosophy, which emphasises careful financial management with the principle of keeping expenditure within the limits of revenue (“Financial chief Paul Chan has made a difference with his budget”, March 1).

In this regard, Chan’s insight is highly appreciated. Though dishing out cash sweeteners may win a round of immediate applause, that is too short-sighted.

Even though some Hong Kong people and political parties have suggested that the government distribute cash among all residents, it is wise of Chan to invest in the medium-term and long-term development of the city.

Besides, it’s appropriate for the government to invest more in education, innovation and technology development.

This year, an additional investment of HK$50 billion has been allotted to the development of innovation and technology in the city. With Hong Kong falling behind many neighbouring cities in this regard, it is vital that it accelerate the pace of development. By promoting advanced technology and innovation, we may develop Hong Kong as a hub for technology cooperation and trade.

Moreover, it is evident that Chan’s philosophy is able to advance with the times. He is willing to take into consideration the different voices raised after the budget was announced, and the government will look into helping those who feel they have missed out on budget perks.

This reflects Chan’s responsible attitude towards Hong Kong citizens. This budget is consistent with Chief Executive Lam’s governance philosophy.

Meanwhile, the chief executive has promised to respond to and help Hong Kong’s “N-nothing” class (“Allowance for city’s needy on the way, Lam says”, March 5).

To conclude, team spirit has been well-demonstrated among Hong Kong’s senior government officials.

Dr Eugene K K Chan, Central