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Hong Kong`s economy expands 2.9% in 2013

2014-02-27 13:04:20Source:XinhuaAuthor:

Hong Kong's Financial Secretary John Tsang said Wednesday in his budget speech that the city's economy grew by 2.9 percent in 2013, higher than the previous year 's economic growth rate.

When delivering his budget speech, Tsang said that the 2.9 percent economic growth in 2013 is a "marked improvement" over 1.5 percent in 2012.

Tsang said that the domestic sector remained resilient amid challenges facing the global economy in 2013.

"The Chinese mainland's robust economy is the driving force of economic growth in the region and underpins the Hong Kong economy," the financial chief said. "more than half of Hong Kong's exports of goods went to the mainland market, outpacing other markets."

As for tourism, visitors from the mainland accounted for 75 percent of the total arrivals and helped stabilize the local economy and preserve employment.

While the challenges remain for Hong Kong as "the US and European economies were beset by a tepid recovery, which put a drag on Hong Kong's trade performance."

"Merchandize exports to the US shrank by 4 percent in 2013 and those to the European Union fell by 1 percent," Tsang said.

Tasang announce that the unemployment rate averaged at a low level of 3.3 percent, buoying the local consumption market.

"The initiatives introduced in last year's budget, including a HK$33 billion package of one-off counter-cyclical measures, had a fiscal stimulus effect of boosting the GDP by 1.3 percentage points, thereby helping to stabilize the economy and preserve employment."