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FS outlines fiscal consolidation plan

In the 2024-25 Budget announced today, Financial Secretary Paul Chan proposed a number of measures to increase revenue and outlined a fiscal consolidation programme which aims to restore fiscal balance in a few years’ time.   Mr Chan said even though the Government strived to reduce expenditure as the COVID-19 pandemic had subsided, the total expenditure for 2023-24 reached $727.9 billion, representing an increase of 36.9% compared with 2018-19, of which operating expenditure rose substantially by 40.2% whereas operating revenue increased only 13.1%.   On capital works, owing to the fact that the Government has been pressing ahead with land and housing supply projects, along with other infrastructure works for improving the environment and people’s livelihood, the average annual expenditure has increased from about $76 billion over the past five years to about $85 billion in 2023-24.   Fiscal reserves have dropped to the current level of $733.2 billion.   Fiscal consoli

Innotech committee meets

Secretary for Innovation, Technology & Industry Prof Sun Dong today chaired the third meeting of the Committee on Innovation, Technology & Industry Development.

Committee members were briefed on the major initiatives in the 2023 Policy Address that fall under the purview of the Innovation, Technology & Industry Bureau and exchanged views on them.

Stressing that innovation and technology (I&T) are instrumental in societal progress and provide key impetus for Hong Kong’s high-quality economic development, Prof Sun explained that the Policy Address sets out a series of initiatives with a forward-looking approach to support I&T development.

The committee members also made suggestions with regard to plans for the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation & Technology Park in the Loop. Prof Sun said the park will contain various clusters with different industry themes.

The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government will work closely with the Shenzhen Municipal Government to foster the synergistic development of the Hetao Shenzhen-Hong Kong Science & Technology Innovation Co-operation Zone, he added.

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