Hong Kong: Trade and Investment Profile
As a global free port and financial hub, Hong Kong continues to thrive as the economic and financial gateway to China, and with an efficient regulatory framework, low and simple taxation, and sophisticated capital markets, the territory continues to offer the most convenient platform for international companies doing business on the mainland. An impressive level of resilience has enabled it to navigate global economic swings and domestic shocks.
However, the economy’s institutional uniqueness, enshrined in its exceptional commitment to economic freedom and a high degree of autonomy pledged by the mainland, has faded a bit. Although Hong Kong maintains the features of an economically free society, economic decision-making has become somewhat more bureaucratic and politicised, and the government’s administrative scope and reach have expanded. Recent political events appear to have undermined public trust and confidence in the administration.
The critical issue today is the shape and form that “universal suffrage,” promised for 2017 by Chinese authorities, will take. Although the government controls all land in Hong Kong, the economy has benefited from its commitment to small government, low taxes, and light regulation. Major industries include financial services and shipping; manufacturing has largely migrated to the mainland. Hong Kong’s economy has become increasingly integrated with China through trade, tourism, and financial links.
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