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Get ready for High Tide | Hong Kong Weekly Briefing
This is the last edition of Hong Kong Matters – but our newsletter is far from ending! HK Matters is merging with High Tide, our premium newsletter, to bring you a free version of it, which you will start to get in your e-mail every weekday as of this Monday. It’ll be more of what you love from our weekly briefing, but (nearly) every day.
Questions? Comments? Suggestions? I’m open to hearing them out, so give me a shout by replying to this e-mail.
Harbour Times Latest
The budget this year may be more than just a plan to get Hong Kong its economy back on track; it also may be a nod to Paul Chan’s interest in the 2022 election.
"The Financial Secretary has also stood up against many who warned him against increasing the Stamp Duty on stock transfer by raising the rate from 0.1% to 0.13% ... Such policies obviously target the more affluent in society, which can possibly earn him the reputation for standing up firmly for the needy and to the narrowing of the wealth gap. Ultimately, the public may even be happy enough with his Budget plan and future view to support a bid for CE in 2022, were he and Beijing to be keen."
The Big Picture
Political Reform | On Thursday, Beijing passed a resolution that outlines major changes to Hong Kong’s electoral systems. One of the changes includes creating a new committee to vet potential candidates for official positions to ensure that their behaviour has and will comply with security law standards.
National Security Law | 21 of the 47 pro-democrats arrested for subversion have been remanded in custody as the court saga of bail hearings came to a close.
COVID-19 | A fifth wave may be on the way if Hong Kong isn’t able to clamp down on the outbreak that began at a fitness centre in Sai Ying Pun. Yesterday, the city reported 60 new cases with 47 of them traced back to the centre and all gym staff have been required to get tested for COVID-19.
Conservation | This week was a win for conservationists as the Sham Shui Po reservoir uncovered in December is now recognised as a Grade 1 historic building, meaning that the government will be advised to properly preserve the site.
Art, nature, music, and more! Check out this list of things to do this weekend on Time Out.
Keep It Classy-cal
You’ve made it through another tough week of the pandemic era. Congrats! Here’s a light news story that may have you looking forward to future MTR commutes.