3rd December 2019 – (Hong Kong) The Chief Executive Carrie Lam announced this morning that the government will launch the 4th round of interim relief measure to help enterprises and businesses to pull through this difficult period. Although fiscal deficits are expected to occur this year or even in the next one to two years, the fiscal surplus should be used to help the public. It is said that the government has launched three rounds of relief measures from August to October this year and a total of HK$20 billion was spent.
A number of recent economic data show that the Hong Kong economy has entered a severe situation. The number of retail sales in October fell by 24.3% year-on-year. The unemployment rate is expected to increase subsequently. The government will closely monitor the situation to safeguard the interests of both corporations and employees.
She also mentioned that after the district council election, there were again rallies held on last weekend with road blockages and petrol bombs hurled by rioters. The government hopes that the violence should end soonest possible.
Regarding the U.S.’s earlier passage of the Hong Kong Bill of Rights and Democracy, Mrs Lam reiterated her stern opposition, deeming it unnecessary and justified, stressing that human rights in Hong Kong are protected by the Basic Law. The city allows freedom of press, freedom of procession and freedom of religion. Unfortunately, she said that for now, there is still no information on sanctions against companies or individuals, but she believes that the bill will affect the confidence of most companies in Hong Kong. Major chambers of commerce in Hong Kong opposed the bill, and the bill is more likely to hurt US companies based in the city.