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Hong Kong (special administrative region of China) Economy

    Economy—overview: Hong Kong has a bustling free market economy highly dependent on international trade. Natural resources are limited, and food and raw materials must be imported. Indeed, imports and exports, including reexports, each exceed GDP in dollar value. Even before Hong Kong reverted to Chinese administration on 1 July 1997 it had extensive trade and investment ties with China. Real GDP growth averaged a remarkable 8% in 1987-88 and a still strong 5% in 1989-97. The widespread Asian economic difficulties in 1998 hit this trade-dependent economy quite hard, with GDP down 5%.

    GDP: purchasing power parity—$168.1 billion (1998 est.)

    GDP—real growth rate: -5% (1998 est.)

    GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$25,100 (1998 est.)

    GDP—composition by sector:
    agriculture: 0.1%
    industry: 15.9%
    services: 84% (1997 est.)

    Population below poverty line: NA%

    Household income or consumption by percentage share:
    lowest 10%: NA%
    highest 10%: NA%

    Inflation rate (consumer prices): 2.9% (1998 est.)

    Labor force: 3.216 million (1998 est.)

    Labor force—by occupation: wholesale and retail trade, restaurants, and hotels 31.9%, social services 9.9%, manufacturing 9.2%, financing, insurance, and real estate 13.1%, transport and communications 5.7%, construction 2.6%, other 27.6% (October 1998)

    Unemployment rate: 5.5% (1998 est.)

    Budget:
    revenues: $30.1 billion
    expenditures: $26 billion, including capital expenditures of $289 million (FY97/98)

    Industries: textiles, clothing, tourism, electronics, plastics, toys, watches, clocks

    Industrial production growth rate: -3.7% (1998)

    Electricity—production: 27 billion kWh (1996)

    Electricity—production by source:
    fossil fuel: 100%
    hydro: 0%
    nuclear: 0%
    other: 0% (1996)

    Electricity—consumption: 28.598 billion kWh (1997)

    Electricity—exports: 1.483 billion kWh (1996)

    Electricity—imports: 5.875 billion kWh (1996)

    Agriculture—products: fresh vegetables; poultry

    Exports: $188.08 billion (including reexports; f.o.b., 1997)

    Exports—commodities: clothing, textiles, yarn and fabric, footwear, electrical appliances, watches and clocks, toys

    Exports—partners: China 35%, US 22%, Japan 6%, Germany 4%, UK 4% (1997)

    Imports: $208.63 billion (c.i.f., 1997)

    Imports—commodities: foodstuffs, transport equipment, raw materials, semimanufactures, petroleum; a large share is reexported

    Imports—partners: China 38%, Japan 14%, Taiwan 8%, US 8%, Singapore 5% (1997)

    Debt—external: none (1996)

    Economic aid—recipient: none

    Currency: 1 Hong Kong dollar (HK$) = 100 cents

    Exchange rates: Hong Kong dollars (HK$) per US$—7.74 (1997-99), 7.730 (1996), 7.800 (1995), 7.800 (1994); note—linked to the US dollar at the rate of about 7.8 HK$ per 1 US$

    Fiscal year: 1 April—31 March

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)