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Hong Kong Today
Hong Kong Today
RTHK's morning news programme. Weekdays 6:30 - 8:00
Ben Tse and Vicky Wong


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Selected audio segments:
Pandemic advisers calls for independent Covid review  Listenfacebook
More government pandemic advisers have backed a call for an independent inquiry into Hong Kong’s response to Covid-19, saying it would be more comprehensive than an internal review within the administration. Professors Wallace Lau and Ivan Hung spoke up a day after Chief Executive John Lee said he saw no need for an independent probe, as Maggie Ho reports:
Some cross-border students return to HK  Listenfacebook
Cross-border students have started returning to Hong Kong schools for face-to-face classes after the Lunar New Year holiday. Despite pandemic restrictions that remain in place, most of them seemed more than happy to be getting back to their classrooms, as Vanessa Cheng reports:
Estimates show economy shrinking 3.5 percent  Listenfacebook
For the third time in four years, Hong Kong's economy has recorded negative growth. It shrank by 3.5 percent last year, according to advance estimates by the government. That is worse than the previous estimate of a 3.2 percent contraction. For the fourth quarter of last year, GDP dropped by 4.2 percent year-on-year, after a 4.6 percent decrease in the previous three months. The government attributed the full-year decline to the worsening external environment but said stronger private consumption since the second quarter had given cause for optimism. Michelle Lam, a Greater China Economist at Societe Generale, told Kelly Yu that she expected the economy to rebound with the easing of Covid curbs but there were still headwinds hindering a full recovery:
HK-based analyst welcomes US Fed rate hike  Listenfacebook
A property and investment analyst says it is good news that the pace of US rate hikes is slowing down. Hannah Jeong, the head of valuation and advisory services at Colliers Hong Kong, was commenting after the US Federal Reserve raised interest rates by 0.25 percentage points – the smallest increase since last March. Jeong said the rate hikes had put a lot of pressure on homeowners. She told Ben Tse that the 12,000 cases of negative equity in Hong Kong was small compared to 106,000 cases in 2003, during the SARS epidemic. But as property values had increased so much, the sums of money involved had tripled:
John Lee to kick off Middle East publicity drive  Listenfacebook
In two days' time, Chief Executive John Lee will lead a delegation of officials and business representatives to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to strengthen trade ties. Officials believe many local businesses could tap into the growing potentials in the region. Nicholas Ho is chairman of Ho & Partners Architects, and a member of the delegation. He says he wants to break into the Middle East market again after a first attempt nearly two decades ago, thanks to new opportunities there. Violet Wong takes a closer look:
Concern over influx of LPH residents at Kai Tak  Listenfacebook
A concern group for subdivided flats says the government must ensure enough resources are available for people moving into light public housing (LPH) units in Kai Tak. Officials plan to build more than 10,000 temporary flats on Olympic Avenue, for people who have been waiting for more than three years for a public rental unit. Critics fear the transitional housing project will overwhelm the neighbourhood and undermine the district's positioning as a core business hub. Lai Kin-kwok, a member of the Hong Kong Subdivided Flats Concerning Platform, spoke to Frank Yung about the need to offer support to people moving there:
Fabric vendors have mixed views of new location  Listenfacebook
Vendors who moved into a new fabric market in Sham Shui Po say they are happy with the cleanliness of the surroundings there. But they are also worried their business will suffer because of its relatively remote location. Leung Pak-hei reports:
US, China urged to play major role in economic recovery  Listenfacebook
The People’s Daily says Beijing and Washington should play a major role in promoting the recovery of the global economy. The call in the official newspaper of the Communist Party's Central Committee comes just ahead of the expected visit to China by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Priscilla Ng reports:
LPGA cancels Hainan Island tournament  Listenfacebook
The Ladies Professional Golf Association has cancelled its Blue Bay tournament which was to be held on Hainan Island. Tour organisers said this year's event could not go ahead because of what they called "ongoing Covid-related matters". Aaron Tam reports:
Myanmar's junta extends state of emergency  Listenfacebook
Myanmar's state media says a state of emergency in the country has been extended for another six months. The decision came as a so-called 'silent strike' took place across the country. Photos on social media showed the normally bustling centre of Yangon empty, with few vehicles on the road. It has been two years since a military coup ousted the government of Aung San Suu Kyi. AnneMarie Evans asked RTHK's Southeast Asia correspondent, Larry Jagan, about how strong a hold the military rulers had on Myanmar:
Teachers, civil servants join mass UK strike  Listenfacebook
Britain has seen its biggest day of strikes in a decade to protest poor working conditions. Up to half-a-million workers are taking part, including 100,000 teachers. The National Education Union said some 23,000 schools would be affected on Wednesday, with an estimated 85 percent fully or partially closed. From a picket line outside a school in south London, the head of the NEU, Mary Bousted, said she regretted the strikes' impact on parents and children, but they were "necessary".