Finance chief says jobless rate will drop further

Financial Secretary Paul Chan on Sunday said Hong Kong’s unemployment rate will drop below six percent – its lowest level in more than a year – as the city’s economic situation continues to improve.

The jobless rate peaked at 7.2 percent at the beginning of the year but fell to six percent in the three months to the end of May.

The latest figures will be released next week.

Writing on his blog, Chan said Hong Kong’s economy has seen significant improvement and the momentum is expected to continue.

“However, many businesses are still struggling and the public are under a lot of stress. To ensure the economy can fully recover, anti-epidemic work must continue. I appeal to everyone to get vaccinated,” he wrote.

Meanwhile, he said more than six million people have signed up for the HK$5,000 electronic spending vouchers to be given out by the government.

He said the government was still processing some applications, but noted that most of those who have registered would be able to get the first instalment of HK$2,000 on August 1.

He said many restaurants and shops had taken the opportunity to offer discounts to encourage spending, and he hoped the economy and job market would benefit from the scheme.