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FEBRUARY 6 - 12, 2024

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Happy Year of the Dragon 2024

Happy Chinese New Year to all our friends! 2024 is the Year of the Dragon, which symbolizes nobility, good fortune and vitality. We wish you good health, happiness, and prosperity in the year ahead!

Chinese New Year Night Parade returns with a bang

Hong Kong's International Chinese New Year Night Parade returned (Feb 10) with a bang! Themed “World Party Great Celebration”, this sparkling extravaganza showcases Hong Kong pulsating energy with nine glamourous floats and a big lineup of 29 international and local performance groups, echoing the energy and motivation of the Dragon and attracting over 44,000 spectators on the streets of Tsim Sha Tsui. Welcoming friends and visitors from around the world at the event, Chief Executive John Lee said that this parade is one of the most spectacular, most anticipated Chinese New Year celebrations in the world, and there is no better way to celebrate this first day of the year than with Hong Kong's world party.

Photo credit: Hong Kong Tourism Board

Fireworks showcase ushers in dragon

A spectacular fireworks display illuminated the night sky over Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour (Feb 11), heralding the start of the Year of the Dragon! Featuring eight scenes with a total of 23,888 firing shells, with the theme “All trades thrive in the Dragon’s Year, China stands strong in the prosperous era”, this 23-minute spectacle, accompanied by vibrant music, left everyone mesmerised in the festive atmosphere. Revisit some of the most incredible moments of the display and feel the buzzing energy in this highlight video.

Photo credit: Hong Kong Tourism Board

CE and CS celebrate Lunar New Year with community 

Delivering his Lunar New Year message (Feb 9), Chief Executive John Lee said that the dragon is an auspicious symbol signifying nobility and good luck. As Hong Kong welcomes the Year of the Dragon, the city is nurturing fresh vitality and prosperity, he said, adding that the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government will seize each and every new opportunity to showcase the charm of Hong Kong, and write a bright new chapter for the city. Speaking at the blessing lantern lighting ceremony of the Hong Kong Well-wishing Festival 2024 in Lam Tsuen, Tai Po (Feb 10), Chief Secretary for Administration, Chan Kwok-ki, said that the HKSAR Government will continue to be wholehearted in its governance in the New Year. He wished for the collaboration of the Government, the business sector and the community in achieving four hopes, namely safeguarding national security with resolute determination, drawing diverse talent with full confidence, supporting grassroots communities with joint efforts, and enhancing district governance with people's needs taken to heart.


First multi-currency digital Green Bonds issued

The HKSAR Government announced (Feb 7) the successful offering of around HK$6 billion (around US$770 million) worth of digital green bonds denominated in Hong Kong dollars, Renminbi, US dollars and Euro under its Green Bond Programme, representing the first multi-currency digital bond offering in the world and attracting subscription by a wide spectrum of institutional investors globally, from financial institutions (FI) to non-FI corporates. Financial Secretary Paul Chan said the issuance of digital green bonds this year demonstrates Hong Kong's strengths and leadership position in combining the bond market, green and sustainable finance as well as fintech. He added that Hong Kong will continue to promote innovation and the application of fintech, explore the use of new technologies to enhance the efficiency, transparency and security of financial transactions, and foster vibrant development in various sectors of the financial market.

Licensing regime for virtual asset trading broached

The HKSAR Government is gauging public opinion on legislative proposals to introduce a licensing regime for providers of over-the-counter trading services of virtual assets (VA). Aiming to developing a robust and transparent regulatory environment for the sustainable development of VA and Web3, the proposals require that any person who conducts a business in providing services of spot trade of any VA for money in Hong Kong, irrespective of whether the services are provided either through a physical outlet or other platforms, must be licensed by the Commissioner of Customs & Excise (CCE). Additionally, the proposals provide powers for the CCE to supervise the anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing conduct of licensees, and enforce the statutory and regulatory requirements under the new regime.

Business sentiment among SMEs in Jan eased

The overall business sentiment among Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Hong Kong and their expectations on the business situation in one month's time eased in January. According to the latest monthly survey by the Census and Statistics Department, the current diffusion index (DI) on business receipts amongst SMEs decreased from 45.5 in Dec 2023 in the contractionary zone to 43.3 in Jan 2024, whereas the one-month's ahead outlook DI on business receipts was 45.3. A Government spokesman said that the difficult external environment and tight financial conditions may continue to dampen business sentiment for the time being. However, continued economic growth should provide some support to business sentiment.


US Government’s interference on Hong Kong’s judicial proceedings opposed

The HKSAR Government firmly opposed and strongly condemned (Feb 8) a joint statement made by four former consuls general of the US to Hong Kong in relation to a case involving Lai Chee-ying, and the US Consulate General in Hong Kong for posting the statement. The Government said that any attempt to interfere in the city’s judicial proceedings by means of political power, media or any other means, thereby resulting in a defendant not being able to have a fair trial that one should receive, is a reprehensible act undermining the rule of law of Hong Kong. It stressed that Hong Kong’s law enforcement agencies have been taking enforcement actions based on evidence and strictly in accordance with the law in respect of the acts of the people or entities concerned, adding that such actions have nothing to do with their political stance, background or occupation.


Hong Kong and its Basic Law

The Basic Law (BL) is the constitutional document of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). It provides the guarantees to maintain our existing way of life, including socio-economic development, the rights and duties of Hong Kong people, the rule of law and other areas. The Basic Law was put into effect on July 1, 1997.

Q: Can foreign enterprises participate fully in Hong Kong’s economy?

A: Yes. Hong Kong welcomes and encourages the participation of foreign enterprises, and provides a level playing field for all. There are no foreign exchange controls in Hong Kong and no restrictions on the trading of gold, securities, futures and the like. The Basic Law stipulates that Hong Kong shall maintain the status of a free port, pursue the policy of free trade and safeguard the free movement of goods, intangible assets and capital. (BL Articles 112; 114; 115)

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