JUNE 7 - 13, 2022
Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival celebrated
Over 30,000 revelers joined in the festivities at the 43rd Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival (Jun 12), cheering on more than 1,000 racers from 48 teams competing on the Charles River. The event, supported by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York (HKETONY), is part of the celebration events for the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Speaking at the opening ceremony, HKETONY Director Candy Nip noted that the Boston Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival has inspired multiple cities in the US to host their own version, and is now a flagship event in promoting Hong Kong’s culture and traditions in New England. This year, the HKETONY staged a mini-exhibition featuring works of Hong Kong illustrator Stella So to showcase the intangible cultural heritage of the city, from celebrated festivals to unique traditions. 
(Photo credit: Boston Dragon Boat Festival, Inc.)
Global Fast Track 2022 program launched
If you are an innovative fintech company that already has commercial customers in your home market and beyond, don’t miss the opportunity to pitch your solutions to more than 100 leading financial institutions, corporates, and investors in Hong Kong and Asia by joining the Global Fast Track 2022 program, launched by Invest Hong Kong (Jun 7). Returning for its third year, applications for Global Fast Track is open from now through September. Qualified fintech firms can start engaging corporate, investor and service champions that match their business needs in one-to-one meetings via the matching portal starting from July. Last year’s program had 300+ global fintech’s applications across all stages and sectors, which benefited from the strong networks with 90+ corporate and investor champions. It also created 400+ business introductions and conducted 30+ mentoring sessions. 
Cornerstone members of green banking initiative announced
Five global banks - Bank of China (Hong Kong), Citi, Crédit Agricole CIB, HSBC, and Standard Chartered - which collectively represent more than US$7 trillion in assets, have become (Jun 7) cornerstone members of the Alliance for Green Commercial Banks, a global initiative set up by Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group. The Alliance aims to develop a green community in emerging markets to collectively finance the infrastructure and business solutions needed to advance sustainable economic development. In addition, the Alliance launched its first thought leadership paper, entitled "Climate Risk: Definitions, Measurement, Current Practices and Regulatory Oversight", to provide a primer on climate risk and its broad reverberation to the financial services industry.
Consumption vouchers to be disbursed in August 
The US$641 (HK$5,000) consumption vouchers under phase two of the 2022 Consumption Voucher Scheme will be disbursed in instalments from Aug 7, with eligibility criteria updated. The program has included additional non-permanent residents as eligible persons, including people who have come to live in Hong Kong through different admission schemes for talents, professionals and entrepreneurs, and to study in Hong Kong. An estimated 300,000 to 350,000 people will benefit from the relaxed eligibility criteria. Those who have permanently departed from Hong Kong or have such an intention will not be eligible for the consumption vouchers. Financial Secretary Paul Chan said the total expenditure would be around US$192 million to US$218 million, which is, from a financial standpoint, affordable as the overriding objective is to stimulate the economy.
Improved business sentiment
Overall business sentiment among SMEs in Hong Kong remained stable in May amid the moderated local epidemic situation and a stabilized employment situation. The current diffusion index (DI) on business receipts amongst SMEs increased slightly from 48.3 in April 2022 in the contractionary zone to 48.6 in May 2022, whereas the one-month's ahead (i.e. June 2022) outlook DI on business receipts was 51.3. Views on the business situation in the coming month stayed positive. Meanwhile, S&P Global Hong Kong PMI increased further to 54.9 in May, the highest reading since March 2011.
Foreign currency reserves at US$465 billion
Foreign currency reserves of Hong Kong amounted to US$465 billion as at the end of May 2022, compared with US$465.7 billion at the end of the previous month. This represents about six times the currency in circulation or 45 per cent of Hong Kong dollar M3. There were no unsettled foreign exchange contracts at end-May 2022.
New Senior Counsel admitted
Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal Andrew Cheung appointed (Jun 11) five senior counsels this year, with four in civil and one in criminal specialties. Highlighting the importance of the tradition of Senior Counsel within the common law, the Chief Justice said this is of great significance to the upholding of the rule of law and due administration of justice in Hong Kong. He added that Senior Counsel, as leaders of the Bar, are expected not only to live up to the trust and confidence reposed in them by the bench, but also to set examples for all junior members of the profession to follow. Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng said the ceremony signified the Senior Counsel, who together with the rest of the legal profession, play a crucial role in its promotion and development of the rule of law in Hong Kong. 
Hong Kong and its Basic Law
The Basic Law is the constitutional document of the HKSAR. Put into effect on July 1, 1997, it enshrines within a legal document the important concept of “One Country, Two Systems”.
Q: Have the laws previously in force in Hong Kong been maintained?
A: The Basic Law provides that laws previously in force in Hong Kong, that is, the common law, rules of equity, ordinances, subordinate legislation and customary law, shall be maintained and adopted as laws of the HKSAR, except for any that contravenes the Basic Law, and subject to any amendment by the HKSAR legislature. (BL Articles 8; 18; 160)

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