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Financial Secretary's transcript

Following is the transcript of a media session (English session) by the Financial Secretary, Mr Henry Tang, after meeting representatives of the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions tonight (January 10):

Reporter: Many economists say there is room for marginal tax cuts for the Hong Kong Government, ... everything is turning fine and we don't expect there will be a huge deficit, how well do you agree with them?

Financial Secretary: We must not be too shortsighted. I know while Hong Kong is recovering and is enjoying a fairly robust economic growth, hopefully and likely for a second consecutive year, but we must take a broader perspective and be more macro in terms of what are the external economic factors that may affect us, what are the internal structural healthiness of our economy, and thirdly how to address some of the wishes of our people. I think I will have to address the need of the people and at the same time take a prudent financial management approach. So I will have to strike a balance and I will announce whatever measures I have on February 22.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion)

Ends/Tuesday, January 10, 2006
Issued at HKT 21:18


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