Container ships are seen docked at Kwai Chung container terminal in Hong Kong on Sept 14, 2021. (PETER PARKS / AFP)
Hong Kong’s economic recovery is well on track, with advance estimates showing that the city’s GDP increased by 5.4 percent in real terms in the third quarter of 2021 over the same period last year.
The continuous expansion in the gross domestic product was attributable to the sustained solid growth in both domestic and external demand, according to the Census and Statistics Department, which released the Q3 data on Monday.
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The city had registered a 7.6 percent GDP growth in the previous quarter, the data showed.
Private consumption expenditure continued to rise appreciably thanks to the stable local epidemic situation, improved labor market conditions and the Consumption Voucher Scheme.
Spokesman, HKSAR government
“Hong Kong's economic recovery became more entrenched in the third quarter alongside the continued revival of global economic activity and stable local epidemic situation,” said a government spokesman.
For the first three quarters of 2021 as a whole, real GDP expanded by 7.0 percent over a year earlier. On a seasonally adjusted basis, real GDP rose slightly by 0.1 percent over the preceding quarter, added the spokesman.
Analyzed by major GDP component, private consumption expenditure rose by 7.0 percent in real terms in the third quarter of 2021 over a year earlier, compared with the 7.2 percent increase in the second quarter, official data showed.
Exports of goods recorded an increase of 14.3 percent in real terms in the third quarter of 2021 year-on-year, moderating from the 20.5 percent increase in the second quarter. Good imports grew by 16.5 percent during the same period.
Inbound tourism however remained virtually frozen, posing a constraint on the pace of economic recovery, the spokesman pointed out. “It is essential for the community to stay vigilant and strive towards more widespread vaccination, which will help enhance the resilience of the economy and lay a foundation for a broader-based economic recovery.”
Exports of services registered a further moderate increase.
“Private consumption expenditure continued to rise appreciably thanks to the stable local epidemic situation, improved labor market conditions and the Consumption Voucher Scheme,” the spokesman said, adding that overall investment expenditure grew further as business outlook improved over the past year.
Looking ahead, the spokesman said Hong Kong’s merchandise exports will benefit from the overall global economic recovery. Nevertheless, he warned that the threat of the more-infectious coronavirus variants, the surge in energy prices, and elevated inflation pressures in the US and Europe could remain roadblocks in Hong Kong’s economic recovery.
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On the other side of the border, Guangdong province fared equally well in its economy in the third quarter. It generated nearly 8.80 trillion yuan ($1.38 trillion) in GDP, recording a year-on-year increase of 9.7 percent, with Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Foshan and Dongguan leading the charge, according to Guangdong’s the Census and Statistics Department of Guangdong.
With inputs from Wang Yuke