FS suggests 'room for changes' on voucher scheme - RTHK
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FS suggests 'room for changes' on voucher scheme

2021-02-27 HKT 14:25
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  • Paul Chan says the government will widen the scope of the spending voucher scheme where possible. Photo: RTHK
    Paul Chan says the government will widen the scope of the spending voucher scheme where possible. Photo: RTHK
The Financial Secretary, Paul Chan, on Saturday said there’s room for “fine adjustments” to the HK$5,000 electronic spending vouchers proposed in his budget blueprint.

The government has proposed giving each permanent resident and new arrival aged 18 or above HK$5,000’s worth of electronic vouchers, but in installments of HK$1,000 per month which must be spent within a specific timeframe.

The proposal came under heavy criticism, with some saying they preferred a cash handout, and others complaining about limitations like the expiry dates.

Chan told an RTHK programme that the scheme could be modified.

“There is room for fine adjustment, but what should be changed is subject to discussions,” he said.

“In the past few days some members of the public have called to say if we pay the sums in one go, big businesses may benefit more. But some said small shops prefer the money be paid in installments,” Chan said.

“There has to be a balance.”

Chan added that the authorities would encourage electronic payment firms such as the Octopus card company to offer discounts to small shops, so they could install these systems and accept the spending vouchers.