NOV 9 - 15, 2021
Economy grows 5.4% in third quarter
Hong Kong’s economic recovery became more entrenched with its third quarter GDP up 5.4% year-on-year due to further revival of global economic activity and the stable local epidemic situation. Supported by the continued revival of major economies and vibrant regional trade flows, total exports of goods grew notably by 14.2% year-on-year. Private consumption expenditure rose by 7.1% year-on-year while the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 4.5% from the previous quarter’s 5.5%. GDP forecast for 2021 is revised to 6.4%, close to the upper bound of the forecast range of 5.5%-6.5% as announced in mid-August.
Mixed business sentiment
Hong Kong’s Monthly Survey on Business Situation of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) showed that the current diffusion index on business receipts for majority of the surveyed sectors dropped by varying degrees in October 2021 as compared with previous month, particularly for restaurants and wholesale trade. However, increases were observed in the retail trade and business services. Business sentiment among SMEs softened somewhat in October, partly due to increased uncertainties over the global economic outlook. The rise in the diffusion index on employment suggested that the hiring sentiment of SMEs remained stable.
Hong Kong participates in APEC 2021 meeting
Hong Kong has actively participated in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) 2021 Economic Leaders' Week (Nov 8-12), pledging support for international cooperation in fighting against the pandemic and championing free trade as a solution for the post-pandemic global economy recovery. Speaking at the Economic Leaders' Meeting (Nov 12), Chief Executive Carrie Lam highlighted Hong Kong’s determination to join all APEC member economies to navigate the pandemic, and the importance of guarding against a resurgence of the pandemic which would set back some of the progress made on the road to recovery. Speaking at a separate APEC session (Nov 9), Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Edward Yau reiterated the significance of unimpeded trade as the solution to global economic recovery. He cited Hong Kong’s record highs in trade and investment in recent years and pointed out that free and open trade and investment are the impetus for growth amid global and regional economic challenges. 
Anti-epidemic measures enhanced
Hong Kong is strengthening its outport control and anti-epidemic measures in light of two imported COVID-19 cases involving locally-based cargo crew. Cargo crew must undergo testing upon arrival at Hong Kong International Airport and are subject to self-isolation and/or medical surveillance depending on circumstances such as the outports at which they have stayed and the nature of their flight duties. During their stay in Hong Kong, they are also required to undergo regular testing to monitor their health condition on a continual basis. Airlines are also requested to carry out various enhancements to counter the risks arising from the latest developments of the COVID-19 epidemic and mutant strains.
M+ opens to public
M+, Asia’s first global museum of contemporary visual culture, officially opens (Nov 12) in Hong Kong, featuring approximately 1,500 works across 33 galleries and other spaces in the museum. Speaking at the opening ceremony (Nov 11), Chief Executive Carrie Lam said M+ is the much-anticipated flagship project for the local and international visual arts sector. She added that with the opening of M+, not only will the West Kowloon Cultural District, an integrated district with world-class arts and cultural facilities, welcome a key new member, Hong Kong will also be on par with cities like London and New York with a sizeable and significant contemporary arts museum. Designed by a global team of the world-renowned architecture practice Herzog & de Meuron, the 65,000-square-meter M+ building is among Hong Kong’s most iconic landmarks. Located on the Victoria Harbour waterfront, the monumental architecture consists of a striking terracotta tile-clad tower, featuring a dynamic LED system on the south facade for the display of M+ content, defining the museum’s place within the urban landscape and contributing to the city’s vibrant night-time environment.
Dazzling music and energetic dance performances featured online
Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra’s annual extravaganza, “Swire Symphony Under The Stars”, returned to the Central Harbourfront on Nov 13. Led by Hong Kong-born conductor Wilson Ng, the event featured an exuberant program of joyous dance music and dazzling fireworks against the city’s iconic skyline. For those who missed the livestream, you can watch it here. Moreover, art lovers should not miss the “The Ballet Encounters @ MTR” jointly presented by the MTR Corporation and Hong Kong Ballet. Two subway stations are transformed into stages where Hong Kong Ballet dancers performed around the iconic “Art in MTR” station artworks, offering a fresh perspective to appreciate multiple forms of art at one glance. (Photo credit: Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra)
Hong Kong Forum to be held Nov 30 – Dec 1
Hong Kong Forum, an annual flagship event co-organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and the Federation of the Hong Kong Business Associations Worldwide, will go online Nov 30 – Dec 1. Speakers include Financial Secretary Paul Chan, who will deliver a keynote speech at the Forum. In addition, participants can learn about the opportunities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, innovation and sustainability, and health tech. Live networking sessions tailored for different time zones will also be scheduled. Register for the Forum here.
  • The volume of Hong Kong’s total exports of goods and imports of goods increased by 9.3% and 15.0% year-on-year, respectively, in September. Prices of goods exports and imports increased 6.6% and 8% year-on-year, respectively, for the month. 
Hong Kong and its Basic Law
The Basic Law (BL) is the constitutional document of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Put into effect on July 1, 1997, it enshrines within a legal document the important concept of “One Country, Two Systems”.

Q: What offences are stipulated in the Hong Kong National Security Law? Are the definitions of these offences clear?
A: The Hong Kong National Security Law has clearly stipulated four categories of offences that endanger national security, namely secession, subversion of state power, terrorist activities, and collusion with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security. Such offences are narrowly defined in the Hong Kong National Security Law and are similar to those in the national security laws of other jurisdictions. The elements, penalties, mitigation factors and other consequences of the offences are clearly prescribed in Chapter III of the Hong Kong National Security Law. The prosecution has the burden to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant has the actus reus and mens rea of the offence (e.g. whether the offence was committed knowingly or intentionally) before the defendant may be convicted by the court. (Chapter 3 “Offences and Penalties” of the Hong Kong National Security Law)

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