Unlike previous cash handouts which may have been put in the bank by recipients, the e-vouchers are guaranteed to boost retail, dining and other industries and will arrive after 17 months of economic hardship fuelled by the pandemic.
It is the latest investment fad, but city’s regulators would be wise to wait for a while before joining the special purpose acquisition companies bandwagon.
After a stop-start policy on electric vehicles, the authorities seem to finally be on the right path towards a greener future.
Move criticised by some Hong Kong lawmakers will add new revenue at a time of record deficits, be a direct tax on the rich, and may also help lower market volatility.
Hong Kong’s financial secretary served up a spending blueprint featuring some relief measures, additional government income and hopes for growth, but whether it is enough for troubled city remains to be seen.
The government has to meet Hong Kong’s genuine need while keeping enough ammunition to safeguard the city’s financial position.
Latest tax income figures reverse upwards trend seen over past few years.
Crowds build up in major shopping centres on Thursday afternoon as more than 6.3 million residents receive up to HK$5,000 in digital vouchers.
Usually the process of scrutinising the budget involves thousands of questions from lawmakers, but the Legislative Council’s president says they will be allowed to ask no more than 10 each this time around.
A fresh round of vouchers will ‘make people happier’, one economist says, but the money might be better spent elsewhere.
Paul Chan says the coronavirus pandemic is being effectively contained and the city’s economy is gradually recovering.
The sale of several prime urban sites helped the city hit a record high of HK$40 billion in land income as of last month, but it’s not enough to cover gap created by major increases to recurrent expenditures, Paul Chan says.
With so many billions in spending about to hit the market, businesses and shop owners may have a perverse incentive to raise prices. The government should not allow this to happen.
The scheme will help the government improve its image and companies to boost their business, while giving Hongkongers some welcome relief from the stresses of the pandemic.
If we spend the vouchers on necessities to save our money instead, there is no net consumption boost to the economy. For the sake of society, we must spend
Rival payment platforms chosen for e-voucher scheme unveil a raft of new offers, including additional digital money and iPhone giveaways.
E-payment operator to help smaller firms with digital marketing as government prepares to give every adult Hongkonger HK$5,000 in bid to boost city’s economy.
The government must have its objectives and basic principles clearly in mind when launching any initiative and communicate them effectively to the public.
While he hoped the scheme could boost local spending, Chan warned against excessive optimism over the economy despite recent improved figures.
Last year’s figure of HK$88.7 billion represented a 37.4 per cent drop from the year before, and was the lowest since 2015-16.
The convenience and simplicity of digital payments will benefit shoppers and could encourage the elderly to better keep pace with technological development.
DAB chief Starry Lee says she is disappointed with the government’s handling of the pandemic and its failure to support low-income groups.
There are still a number of – mostly elderly – people who are not familiar with e-payment platforms, and use cash regularly. We shouldn’t forget these former taxpayers.
Make voucher scheme fairer by including more than four e-payment providers and offering help to businesses that only take cash.
Officials pick AlipayHK, Octopus, Tap & Go and WeChat Pay HK for a scheme aiming to boost spending by giving every Hong Kong adult resident HK$5,000 in consumption vouchers.
Bus companies are backed by big investors with the capacity to bear any loss or risk of operating a business. The needy have no such safety net, especially when even sweeteners have been withdrawn.
Taiwan’s stimulus vouchers in November offered a choice between digital and paper versions, making them them easy to use for all ages.
The issue was ignored during the fat surplus years but with deficits looming amid an economic downturn, it’s time to take a good hard look at public expenditure
Environmental issues were thinly scattered through the latest budget, although Hong Kong has committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.
We should not be sacrificing our poorest and most vulnerable. This is especially egregious when we consider the many rounds of economic assistance disbursed to businesses.