Published: 16:59, May 19, 2024 | Updated: 17:28, May 19, 2024
Finance chief: Hong Kong's macroeconomy improved, finances stable
By Zhang Tianyuan
People walk in front of Exchange Square, which houses the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, in Central, Hong Kong, on Jan 5, 2024. (SHAMIM ASHRAF / CHINA DAILY)

Hong Kong’s macroeconomy has improved and its finances remain stable, as evidenced by bullish stock market sentiment and steady housing prices, said Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po.

Writing on his official blog on Sunday, Chan said the benchmark Hang Seng Index had broken through the 19,000-point threshold last week to reach a nine-month high, with stocks traded exceeding HK$200 billion ($25.64 billion) in a single day last week.

ALSO READ: Easier payments seen for HK residents with e-CNY pilot expansion

“The Hang Seng Index had soared by more than 3,300 points in the past four weeks, equaling a 20 percent surge,” he noted. “The market has rebounded by more than 30 percent from this year’s low.”

... the recovery is uneven among different sectors, with the retail and catering businesses still adapting to the challenges brought by consumption patterns changes of locals and tourists. 

Paul Chan Mo-po, Financial Secretary

The finance chief added that housing prices have stabilized following a 10-month losing streak, and transaction volumes have climbed.

READ MORE: Xpeng marches into Hong Kong, debuting three models

The latest data from the Rating and Valuation Department showed that the private flat price index edged up from 302.5 to 305.7 in February this year.

However, “the recovery is uneven among different sectors, with the retail and catering businesses still adapting to the challenges brought by consumption patterns changes of locals and tourists,” Chan said.

In response to the changes, the HKSAR government is taking measures to create more favorable market conditions and atmosphere, striving to work with the commercial sector to create a new growth engine.

Chan said mega events for the second half of the year will be announced soon. “These events are bound to add consumption momentum to the market, offering more attractive places to visit and spending choices for both locals and tourists.”

READ MORE: Yau: HK firmly supports rules-based multilateral trading system

Chan sees technology and innovation as new engines for mid-term economic growth.

Cyberport, a government-backed startup incubation park, attracted over 400 new firms last year, bringing its total to more than 2,000 enterprises, including eight unicorns. A unicorn is a privately-owned startup company valued at over $1 billion.

Contact the writer at tianyuanzhang@chinadailyhk.com