Why Hong Kong Is Facing a Recession Amid Protests and Trade Wars | WSJ


– [Narrator] Hong Kong is
facing its first recession since the global financial crisis in 2008. Influenced by unprecedented factors. Including its own ongoing
anti-government protests and the trade stalemate
between Washington and Beijing. In February, the government
predicted Hong Kong’s economy would grow up to 3% this year. Six months later, that
forecast was slashed to zero to 1%. (speaking in foreign language) Since June, the city’s
tourism industry has suffered from the increasingly violent and disruptive pro-democracy protests. In August, normally a
strong month for tourism, arrivals in Hong Kong dropped
nearly 40% from a year ago. It’s the worst decline since May, 2003 when Hong Kong was grappling
with the deadly SARS virus. Occupancy rates of hotels in
some districts fell around half while room rates decreased 40 to 70%. – Mainland Chinese
tourists make up over 70% of total tourist arrivals in Hong Kong. But when protests started in June, that number has dropped. And there’s also increase
in anti-China sentiment in the city. – [Narrator] 16 years ago,
once the all clear came after the SARS outbreak, visitor arrivals and business
confidence swiftly recovered. But, as the anti-Beijing
mood grows in Hong Kong, so does opposition to the
protests in mainland China. The protests and the drop
in tourists have disrupted the city’s retail sales. In August, sales dropped
23% from a year ago. Their worst monthly decline on record. Luxury items were among
the biggest victims. Sales of jewelry, watches, and other valuable gifts fell nearly 50%, marking a record low. – The protests have
been disruptive for life especially on the weekends. In early October, there was a time when entire department stores were closed and major train stations
were also shut down. And also, if you go to
popular shopping districts like (speaking in foreign language), it’s actually a popular
destination for protests now. – [Narrator] And then
there’s the trade dispute between China and the U.S. Though the two sides emerged
from the latest round of trade talks with a truce in place, there’s still a lot to be worked out. The effects of the stalemate
have been felt in Hong Kong which relies heavily on
reexporting Chinese goods. Total exports are expected to
shrink nearly 4% this year. So far, the finance sector
has weathered the protests. – Prohibition on face
cuffering regulation. – [Narrator] However, when
the government invoked colonial-era emergency powers, it put to the test Hong
Kong’s rule of law. The authorities say they will only use the emergency provision to ban people from wearing masks at public gatherings but it also allows the chief executive to enact drastic regulations such as censorship, arrests,
and foreign exchange controls. The government said it had no such plans. Declining reexports and
the government’s struggle to restore order to the city have erased any economic
momentum from the start of 2019. Experts believe numbers for
the third quarter will confirm Hong Kong is in technical recession. – Despite the major decline in Hong Kong’s economic indicators, Hong Kong’s financial
buffers still remain strong. That can come under pressure if Hong Kong’s status
as a global financial and business center comes under fire and that could be really
difficult and challenging for its longterm growth prospects.

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

  1. This kind of long protest doesn’t happen in America coz everyone here have bills to pay. No one over 18 yr old still accepts parents allowance.

  2. I just wonder that is there some city in mainland can replace HK completely. The bad attitude, self-supremacy and hostility towards mainlanders is unacceptable.

  3. Thanks to all these protesters. Even if u give a free air ticket and free hotel accommodation I won’t want to visit HK. I am from Malaysia. U just can’t more stupid than these stupid protesters in HK. What they are doing is equivalent to disowning your own race and ancestry. Total madness. Best way to wake them up is to let them ROT.

  4. If your supporting the protesters/rioters/terrorists you need to educate yourself.

    Google and read what normal Hong Kong citizens are saying. Watch the 100’s of videos where citizens are being beaten up because they have a different opinion. It is beyond disgusting. If your fighting for democracy how can you not allow other opinions. Absolutely sick.
    Hong Kong is rated by the Cato Institute in the 3rd spot on the human freedom index and the US is in the 17th position.

    Don’t be brainwashed by the lies.

    Please educate yourself before taking sides

  5. America is the biggest winner out of this HK China situation. Agenda achieved. I can't think of any reason why China would want HK to do bad, it only makes them look bad. When China looks bad, America looks good.

  6. Can’t imagine WSJ giving out fake news!
    No protesters are Anti China or Anti Gov or Anti-Beijing, people asked the Govt to ban a new unreasonable bill only at the first place!

  7. Hong Kong brought this on themselves… now they will suffer economically … and have gained nothing… the world will say oh we feel so bad for them but that is all they will have. Hong Kong will wilt and die economically… China will simply prop up Shanghai or Shen Zhen and Macau as new economic bridges to the world. Time erases all hard feelings and the best businessman in the world will only care about turning a profit. The naive souls in Hong Kong have lost.

  8. Hong Kong citizens: "it's worth economic losses to fight for democracy"
    American Businesses: "but what about the money?!"

  9. So the protestors wants a better city by destroying their own city? This is much deeper than just wanting freedom. They should learn how to protest from Dr. King if what they want is freedom.

  10. They need to do something they can’t keep coming to America like they better than us when they have no power in their own country. It’s easy to go somewhere where others have already protested and fought for equality and act superior. Do it in your own country. That goes for all others that think they are better than the blacks and browns in America. Go through what we did before you start feeling superior. Three generations of my family fought in war just to come home to racism and bigotry. Is my country perfect no. But at least we stick it out and fight. Instead of uprooting and profiting off the sweat and tears and blood of others.

  11. Typical WSJ reporting. Nothing matters but money to them. Human rights be damned as long as there are bundles to be made.

  12. well, nobody ever said freedom is free.

    Plenty of democracies with 1/3 the GDP per capita of HongKong. Everything is possible.

  13. you know why its always students young people and irrationals there, cuz they dont have jobs. they like party with crowds. they dont think too much. they like use big simple slogans, just as all those political elections nowadays. People don't spend time knowing what they are voting for but just read some slogans by charming leaders. They overuse the word of freedom instead of actually work and study to make it a better place. They take airplane around the world quit studying , sitting outside claiming for environmental protection. But they are naive, whereever there are people, there are soceities, there are rich people in power, there are selfish individuals or groups sacrificing the humanity and empathy and .our natural for benefits and profits. As long as there are people, there are greedy. The only way is, to sit down, like some scientists, making study in microorganism that can diguest plastics for example. The new Nobel price economist winner using fieled studies for poverty. Thats what people should do. But because it is hard , lazy people don't do it, they sit and shout to protest like soma party animals ,destroying public facilities. like these HK protesters and these spanish ones. in name of freedom it is just a politicial power shifting. To change the world is never just to change political power. you have to make a better self you have to solve problems use science and technologies by pushing yourself studying and research and change.

  14. The UN: boosting the economy equally so that the gap between country can reduce and save people from proverty is one of our first criteria
    Also China- one of the big chair in UN: but…politic is funnier

  15. 5 demands of #HKers:
    1. Completely withdraw of the Extradition Bill
    2. Dropping charges against arrested protestors
    3. Retract the proclamation that protests were riots
    4. Independent investigation into police brutality
    5. Implementation of universal sufferage

    #BeWater #BeHumble

  16. The Communist Party not only raped and kidnapped the public opinion of the Chinese people, but also raped and kidnapped the international community.

  17. If people from hong Kong had access to guns, this would never happen. Now China actually got hong Kong back to its socialist domain.

  18. Hongkong mob: f**k the money, f**k the job, all we need is freedom & democracy.
    Meanwhile in north Korea, Kim is telling he's people, f**k the money, f**k the US, we got communism!

  19. voteing rights aka equality in voteing rights in government representation of the people vs corporate representation inculding seats held in the goverment which leads to farin favortism in laws a loose form of quid pro quo

  20. At this point, I don't think we care about economic growth anymore. We're already wealthy enough to search for something more noble. Money isn't everything.

  21. Without real freedom and rule of law, all the money you are earning won’t be sustainable. It is time for HK people to stand out and protect their rights. Wish the people from China will realise the problem of communism before it’s too late.

  22. The government is plotting to put the blame onto the protests. The police has effectively taken control from the beaurocracy. They have ordered police to mask themselves and carry batons and sprays and let them attack indiscriminately without and consequences. The metro stops serving early at night. People just avoid moving around at night. It is the government's plan to kill Hong Kong's economy.

  23. I am for Hong Kong citizens protest against the expansion and increased totalitarianism of the Chinese government, the economy there can recover later provided that the demand of the protests is satisfied.

  24. Thanks to the rioters that destroy the Hong Kong brand -heaven of shopping. Bravos to the new Hong Kong brands! Famous at training rioters, non-professional biased reporters, non-professional teachers that brain-wash students, designing false media and empty phrases without solving real issues, high paying councillors that do nothing but just oppose and argue, Carrie Lam that does not show true leadership to impose strong measures against the chaos ! Yet $$ fund to those democracy parties! They should pay for the damages of the subway station . Criminals will love to stay in Hong Kong without the expedition law!

  25. I wished I could listen to sthg with more insights rather than falling number of tourists and sales of luxury goods. Does WSJ understand that most of general public in HK hate that our city has been packed with tens of millions of Mainland tourists and our local shops has been replaced with luxury stores? Quieter streets and more local shops are what we want. Of coz economic recession is undesirable but it’s an opportunity for HK to shift from earning easy money from Mainland tourists to businesses which add more values and is sustainable.

  26. You know during and after watching the Joker movie…it reminded me of HK, although both are for different purposes, the riots it nonetheless is a mirror of what’s happening in the west (particularly North America) and in HK. Feel free to disagree as we’re all different.

  27. if you insist to call this riots pro-democracy advocators, why not welcome than to Washington to act as they do in HongKong now?

  28. Carrie Lam has bring HK to a stand still and disaster . Her government has the tools to eradicate terrorism act but she chooses to become a mayhem city . HK political system show the majority want to restore peace,law and order has no more human right and freedom. Is this democracy and freedom the western view?

  29. I hope these rioters realize that if Hong Kong continues its traditional value of maintaining this so called "Democracy", and yes I quote "Democracy", the only people that win are the people who are already ahead. Those who are in the bottom will only get their wealth gap ever more increased as they continue to struggle to catch up. Adapting Hong Kong into China will reap far more benefits than the negatives it brings. One such benefit is the access to more resources and distribution of space per capita. This entails a more evenly distribution of wealth through affordable housing in China that the bottom group of people can buy without trouble. This also solves the problem of China's Ghost Cities and will bring property value up as population gets distributed evenly. We see more of this happening in China with it's own people. More and more people are moving away from cities and building whole communities in these isolated areas. These rioters focus too much on their human rights when they haven't even earn them and need to open their eyes and visit China. It's 2019 and almost 2020, China isn't the same anymore. It's not true communism that most people take it for. China has an extremely complicated tier system that allows more freedom than it appears on the facade.

  30. Thank God that I don't live in Hong Kong. We are happy to see Chinese, Hong Kongers, Koreans, Japanese, and Taiwanese alike. No riots, no economic turmoil.

  31. When Britian handed over Hong Kong to China in 1997, it's a death sentence for hongkongers, hongkongers worst nightmare.

  32. Well done Americans you guys are happy now?in the name of freedom you bring violence poority chaos, now you are saying they face recessions?well done check what you have said few months ago WSJ

  33. Recession is exactly what US want for HK in her Trade War against China as well as rest of the world. US is now unable to be great from within, so the only solution is to disrupt everyone else equilibrium in order to remain great. Besides, all these President Trumps' increased presidential directives create chaos in markets allowing big commercial swings to enable the parties in the know to greatly profit from the markets. No one earns much from a stable flat market. The trick is to be in the in-know to separate the real from false presidential Trump Twitters, build up a position to make a killing in the markets. Profiteers are protected from any insiders ' laws as all information are publicly available in presidential Twitters. Welcome to new world.

  34. 啲香港屎民便秘咁咪叫古天樂幫甘油條做代言人賣廣告囉一定可以長順痾屎不停香遍港坑! 再吾係咪叫古天樂經理Ronnie Fung 表演俾大家睇點幫古天樂通渠囉!吾使爆屎渠流遍屎地嘛!

  35. The best case scenario would have been an extension of "one country, two systems" for Hong Kong after 2047 by continuing to serve as a financial gateway between the west and China. Hong Kong is in an excellent position to continue this role given its young professional workforce, institutional system, and modern infrastructure. However, given the current political crisis, the only thing these rioters has achieved and shown to the China is that "one country, two systems" does not work. All this will come back in 2047 to haunt the Hong Kong youths of this generation….especially those who have been arrested (whether or not they are charged). Unlike many of their leaders who already have foreign nationality as fallback, all these brainwashed youths will not be as fortunate.

  36. 1:19 The boost in tourism after SARS was a direct result of the Mainland's implementation of Individual Visit Scheme which began on 28 July 2003. It allowed travelers from Mainland China to visit Hong Kong and Macau on an individual basis. No such help this time around….

  37. This is such such old news. Singapore is, has been, and will be where finance is gathered
    the only reason hk is still not completely upside down is to mitigate dmg and stall time for $ to move out

  38. So, is this video supported by the CCP? The ultimate goal for the CCP about HK is that letting HK be a place where there is absolute nothing valuable as a state, shifting its all function from HK to Shenzhen .
    I do not understand why the US media like this is not supporting democracy, on the contrary giving some fuel to chinese communism dictatorship.
    The thing we need right now is to visit HK to support democracy and its people rather than doing these negative reports. HK 加油 from Japan.

  39. Dont forget that the culprits are Carrie Lam, HK police and CCP. Remember 721, 831 massacre at MTR stations. Stand with HK

  40. In order to stabilize the economy, Carrie Lam needs to resign. The protesting Hongkongers I believe will not stop their disruption until she's gone. She needs to think of the people and not for political reasons.

  41. In a People's Congress Meeting in Beijing, "All Chinese Comrades stand to your feet before the Meeting". No one did because everyone there is holding US or Western citizenship LOL. Xi Jinping tells 1.4 Chinese who are mostly still poor and uneducated to dream the Chinese dream while Xi and his elite comrades dream the American democracy dream!!
    Today Hong Kong, Tomorrow Whole World to be bullied, robbed, abused, scammed, grabbed, slaughtered and shut up by China criminal party, world's largest and most evil thuggish nation!!

    Hundreds HK Citizens already slaughtered by commie police dogs since June 2019. No one ever know the exact number killed, many corpses are dumped in ocean or remote places or across the border in china. Many victims' parents or family are working or staying abroad. Some victims are immigrants visiting HK in summer, took part in the protests and killed by police dogs.

    HK police dogs must be dissolved, reformed to a honest, reliable team that must not take corrupted orders from china criminal party.

    Commie puppets Carrie Lam and police dogs must all sent to jail, tortured and raped in jail just as what they are now doing towards HK Citizens!!

  42. Commie puppet Carrie Lam destroys Hong Kong completely in weeks that took British and Americans 170 to build up, how brilliant!

  43. "Lam Chow" – Instead of letting china criminal party commies come rob, grab, abuse, steal, scam, take advantages of HK's reserves, HK$ and US$ as ccp is completely broke, better to let HK die so will ccp and commies!!

  44. Hong Kong needs a firm decisive hand. It's better to suffer the sharp adjustment to the economy rather than a prolonged slowdown.

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