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Low tax rates and a simple tax regime have been the two cornerstones of Hong Kong's signature light-handed approach to public governance since the 1970s.

In recent years, however, there has been a debate over whether this policy is still relevant in a world that has undergone considerable change. Issues such as an ageing population are expected to push up public expenditure, and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has only served to exacerbate matters.

Recurrent expenditure in 2020/21 was about HK$490 billion: a one-third increase on 2017/18 and triple the level of 1997/98. Since the onset of the pandemic, our fiscal reserves have been depleted by nearly 30%.

In the meantime, an international tax deal backed by 132 countries, partly intended to end the "global race to the bottom" on corporate tax rates, has added to questions on how Hong Kong's tax regime should adapt.

Join us on 20 September when Stephen Chiu, Associate Professor of Economics at HKU Business School, and Andrew Fennell, Lead Analyst for China and Hong Kong at Fitch Ratings, will share their thoughts on Hong Kong's tax regime and fiscal sustainability. They will also discuss ways to address the city's narrow tax base amid the pandemic, our changing demographics, as well as the likely impact of the global tax revamp.

This session is the third in a series of events the Chamber's Economic Policy Committee is organizing with the HKU Business School to consider some of the pressing issues facing Hong Kong. Forthcoming topics include brain drain, social inequality and ageing population.

For HKU students and alumni, please click here for registration.

Coronavirus Containment Measure:
- To prevent the spread of Covid-19, we kindly ask that all event participants wear a mask when attending the event
- To minimise the risk of spreading the coronavirus, if you or a family member has been overseas within 14 days of this event, then we kindly request that you do not attend.
- To prevent the spread of Covid-19, food and beverages will not be provided during the event
- Chamber staff will be conducting temperature checks at the premises.

Speakers' presentations at this event are intended for educational purposes only and do not replace independent professional judgment. Statements of fact and opinions expressed during this event are those of the speakers and participants and, unless expressly stated to the contrary, are not the opinion or position of the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce, its members, or its committees. The Chamber does not endorse or approve, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, accuracy or completeness of the information presented. Attendees should note that, with the approval of speakers, this event may be recorded, and possibly published on the Chamber's website in audio and/or video formats without further notice.

Recording, duplication or distribution of the contents of the online event is prohibited without prior written permission from the Chamber.


Andrew Fennell, Lead Analyst for China and Hong Kong, Fitch Ratings

Andrew Fennell joined Fitch Ratings in the Asia-Pacific Sovereign team in 2014. He is based in Hong Kong and is currently the lead analyst for China and Hong Kong.

Before joining Fitch, Andrew worked at Morgan Stanley (2011-14) as a credit risk manager covering Asian corporates and sovereigns in Hong Kong. He has also lived in mainland China where he worked as a property analyst for Savills (2008-09) and as a Teaching Fellow for the Yale-China Association (2006-08). He speaks and reads Mandarin Chinese at an advanced level.

Andrew has an M.A. from The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a B.A. from Yale University.

Stephen Chiu, Associate Professor of Economics, The University of Hong Kong

Professor Stephen Chiu received his undergraduate education in Physics at the Hong Kong Baptist College, and graduate education in Economics at the Pennsylvania State University, where he obtained his Ph.D. degree in 1995.  

He had since taught at the Chinese University of Hong Kong until he joined the University of Hong Kong in 2002.  He has been the principal investigator of seven competitive earmarked grants.

Moderator: Tony Miller, Chairman of Chamber's Economic Policy Committee

Language English
Date and Time 2021/09/20 12:30 to 14:00
Venue Chamber Theatre and Online via Zoom
Media Closed to media
Enquiries Karen Au
Tel: 28231200
  • HK$ 100 for Members / HK$ 200 for Non-Members (In person)
  • HK$ 100 for Members / HK$ 200 for Non-Members (Online via Zoom)
+$50 for booking offline
This event accepts Chamber Coupon (terms and conditions)
Members enjoy 30% discount with BOC HKGCC VISA Card
Notes - Bookings are only confirmed upon receipt of payment, on a first come first served basis.
- Booking transfer is allowed for corporate members with advanced notice, walk-ins are normally not accepted.
- The Chamber reserves the right to decline any booking or cancel the event. In such case, a full refund of the participation fee will be issued.
- The registration fee is non-refundable for this event.
- Members paying with their BOC HKGCC Visa Card will enjoy a 30% discount on their reservation. The discount is only applicable to the card holder, and does not extend to their guests. The discount cannot be used in conjunction with Chamber Coupons.
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