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Hong Kong regaining momentum as base for multinational companies

Hong Kong continues to be a magnet for international investors. A total of 382 Mainland and overseas companies set up or expanded their business in Hong Kong in 2023, representing a year-on-year increase of about 27%, according to the newly release Invest Hong Kong annual report. The total investment thereby brought to Hong Kong's economy has reached HK$61.6 billion (US$7.9 billion) and created more than 4 100 job opportunities. The companies came from 45 economies. The Mainland continued to lead with 136 companies, followed by the United Kingdom (48), the United States (34), Singapore (27) and Australia (13). In terms of sectors, the portfolio covered a broad spectrum ranging from financial services and fintech to innovation and technology, business and professional services, tourism and hospitality and consumer products.

EVIDENT Platform Services Limited sets up headquarters in HK

Innovative fintech company EVIDENT Platform Services Limited has set up its global headquarters in Hong Kong, offering the world's first tokenised private limited partnership fund investing in the aviation sector, in partnership with Anisos Capital Group. The Founder and CEO of EVIDENT Group, Dr Florian Spiegl, said that Hong Kong has storied history of a strong legal foundation, government support for innovation, an efficient tax regime, as well as one of the most advanced digital assets licensing and regulatory frameworks. The city is the ideal setting for the company to bridge the gap between issuers and investors through their innovative digital investment structures. The Associate Director-General of Investment Promotion at Invest Hong Kong, Charles Ng, said that EVIDENT’S expansion into Hong Kong shows confidence in the city’s vibrant fintech ecosystem and robust financial market prospects and regulatory regime.

FS: HK remains resilient and business friendly

Resilience is an equally compelling character of Hong Kong. While the city have a new and equally complex set of challenges to overcome, Hong Kong has good reason to be optimistic, said Financial Secretary Paul Chan at the Hong Kong Chartered Governance Institute 75th Anniversary Celebration (Jan 31). He pointed out that Hong Kong remains Asia's leading asset and wealth management centre, handling more than US$4 trillion in assets in 2022 and recording banking deposit of HK$16.2 trillion (US$2.08 trillion) at the end of 2023. The city is also Asia's largest hedge fund hub and the region's second-largest private equity centre, leading Asia in green and sustainable finance. Citing the American Chamber of Commerce's annual business sentiment survey that 74 per cent of its members believed that Hong Kong’s business outlook would be optimistic or neutral, and the German Chamber of Commerce’s expression of confidence in Hong Kong's investment environment, he said that Hong Kong will continue to be a friendly and favoured city for doing business.

Monetary Authority: HK dollar exchange rate remains stable

In response to the interest rate decision by the Federal Open Market Committee of the United States Federal Reserve  to keep the target range for the federal funds rate unchanged at 5.25-5.5%, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) said in a statement (Feb 1) that the Hong Kong dollar exchange rate remains stable, and the Hong Kong dollar interbank rates might remain high for some time, adding that the financial and monetary markets of Hong Kong continue to operate in a smooth and orderly manner. The HKMA will continue to closely monitor market developments and maintain monetary and financial stability.


Lunar New Year celebrations in full swing

Hong Kong is all decked out for the Lunar New Year on February 10! At the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza, a lantern display titled "Dancing Dragon with Lanterns to Greet the New Year" has been illuminated to ring in the Year of the Dragon. Designed and crafted by local paper-crafting master Chan Yiu-wah, the lantern display features a lively green dragon, symbolising the vitality of spring, weaving through palace lanterns and blooming festive flowers. This display represents a shared wish for Hong Kong's continued prosperity as it welcomes the New Year. In addition, Lunar New Year Market will be held at 15 locations across the city till Feb 10 for the public to buy festive plants and flowers, food, decorations and spring couplets to welcome the New Year. Check out the Discover Hong Kong website for all the festivities in town!

ComplexCon to stage first Asia edition in Hong Kong

ComplexCon, a groundbreaking festival and exhibition that brings together pop culture, music, art, food, sports, innovation, and education, is set to stage its first Asia edition in Hong Kong from Mar 22-24 at the AsiaWorld-Expo. Themed “Bridging Culture”, this event will feature an international line-up of megastars, including 21 Savage in his Asia live debut on March 22, artists from South Korean hip-hop label AOMG on March 23, and Hong Kong’s 3Cornerz for the finale. In addition, the three-day event will also feature the festival’s famed Complex Marketplace where more than 200 brands, artists, and creators create a one-of-a-kind experience for participants.


GDP resumes growth of 3.2% in 2023

Hong Kong economy continued to revive with real GDP growing by 4.3% in the fourth quarter of 2023 over a year earlier, after increasing by 4.1% in the preceding quarter. For 2023 as a whole, real GDP resumed growth of 3.2%, following a contraction of 3.7% in 2022. Exports of services and imports of services recorded increases of 21.2% and 26.0% respectively while total exports of goods and imports of goods recorded decreases of 10.3% and 8.5% respectively in real terms over 2022. Looking ahead, the difficult external environment will continue to pose pressures on Hong Kong's exports of goods in 2024. The situation may stabilise later in the year if advanced economies cut interest rates as expected.

2023 retail sales up 16.2%

The value of Hong Kong’s retail sales in December, provisionally estimated at $36.3 billion, rose 7.8% compared with the same month in 2022. For 2023 as a whole, the total retail sales value grew by 16.2%. The increase in visitor arrivals and rising household income bodes well for local consumption. These factors, coupled with the government’s efforts to promote mega events and launch various activities should provide support to retail businesses.


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: Is Chinese the only official language allowed under the Basic Law?

A: No. In addition to Chinese, English is also an official language used by the executive authorities, the legislature and the judiciary of the HKSAR. (BL Article 9)

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