The Hong Kong government has announced a 100 percent cut in profits tax for 2019 – subject to a ceiling of HK$20,000 – to help local businesses which have been reeling under a combination of factors, ranging from China-US trade spat, anti-government protests and the coronavirus outbreaks.
Financial Secretary Paul Chan said the tax relief will reduce the government's revenue by HK$2 billion.
Chan said Hong Kong’s economy is expected to contract by between 0.5 and 1.5 percent this year, saying it faces “enormous challenges".
“The outlook is far from promising in the near term”, Chan said in his budget speech at the Legislative Council.
Chan said the government is also planning to waive business registration fees for the coming year, and is setting up low-interest loans for small and medium-sized enterprises.
Under this plan, the government will provide a 100 percent guarantee and the maximum amount of loan an enterprise can take out will be HK$2 million.