'Despite weak stock market, HK's still attractive' - RTHK
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'Despite weak stock market, HK's still attractive'

2024-02-18 HKT 12:34
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  • 'Despite weak stock market, HK's still attractive'
Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Christopher Hui on Sunday said Hong Kong still has an edge as a financial hub despite the weak performance of its stock market.

He made the comment in response to an article by economist and former Morgan Stanley Asia boss Stephen Roach, who proclaimed that Hong Kong was "now over" because the Hang Seng Index had lagged behind its peers.

Speaking on Commercial Radio, Hui pointed to growth in areas such as asset management and risk management, and noted that over US$500 billion worth of bonds were issued in the city over the past nine months, 7 percent more than the same period the year before.

“Part of the reason for the increase was the development of the renminbi, as it has lower interest rates compared with the US. But another reason was that many organisations chose to come to Hong Kong to issue bonds as we have a group of international investors. These advantages are obvious."

Hui also noted that although the city’s post-Covid economic recovery had not been as fast as expected, and pressure persists this year due to the high interest rates as well as geopolitics, authorities will keep rolling out various measures to improve the city’s financial competitiveness.

“This year marked the 10th anniversary of the Stock Connect programme and the fifth anniversary of the Greater Bay Area Development Plan. We’ll look back on the progress made over the past years while forging ahead with new measures to strengthen the equity market connections between Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area,” he said.

Other agendas under the pipeline including a roadmap of climate disclosures for enterprises to speed up green finance, as well as more education and supervision to regulate and promote the virtual asset markets.

'Despite weak stock market, HK's still attractive'