'Cash vouchers already stimulating spending' - RTHK
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'Cash vouchers already stimulating spending'

2022-08-08 HKT 12:17
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  • 'Cash vouchers already stimulating spending'
A catering sector representative said on Monday that business increased by around 15 percent on the day a new round of electronic spending vouchers were handed out.

Some 6.2 million people received HK$2,000 on Sunday, with a further HK$3,000 due later in the year.

Speaking on an RTHK programme, Simon Wong, the president of the Federation of Restaurants and Related Trades, said eateries recorded a jump in business after the consumption vouchers were doled out.

“Especially during lunch hours, people have just got their HK$2,000 and they are happy to eat out and spend some money,” he said.

“Business for Chinese restaurants and small to medium eateries in particular was rather satisfactory.”

He pointed out though that people would probably be more generous if they'd received the HK$5,000 in one go like they did in the previous batch of handouts in April.

But speaking on the same programme, the lawmaker representing wholesalers and retailers, Peter Shiu, said giving out the voucher in instalments could stimulate consumer sentiment over a longer period of time.

“In April, business obviously rebounded, but by May and June, people may have already spent most of it. This time round, it’s handed out in two instalments, they receive some of it in August. When they nearly use it up by September, they receive more in October. The effect may last longer,” he said.

Meanwhile, the head of the Consumer Council, Gilly Wong, urged people to be extra cautious when they use so-called “buy now and pay later” platforms.

These platforms allow people to buy certain products and pay for them in instalments later.

Unlike spending instalment plans offered by banks, she said such platforms may have poor customer service.

If there’re any problems with the products or delivery services, it may be difficult for consumers to file complaints or get a refund, Wong warned.