Hong Kong is ranked as the world's freest economy again

     The Financial Secretary, Mr Paul Chan, today (February 16) welcomed the Heritage Foundation's ranking of Hong Kong as the world's freest economy for the 23rd consecutive year.
     He said, "I am glad that our steadfast commitment in safeguarding the free market principles in Hong Kong is once again affirmed. On top of maintaining our favourable business environment, free trade, simple and low tax regime, the rule of law and independent judiciary, the Government would also strive to enhance our financial infrastructure and foster closer economic co-operation with major trading partners, so as to strengthen Hong Kong’s leading position as an international city."
     Among the 12 components measured in the Index of Economic Freedom report, Hong Kong achieved high scores of 90 or above in eight components, and attained the top positions in Fiscal Health, Trade Freedom and Financial Freedom amongst the 180 economies ranked in the report.  The Foundation also recognised Hong Kong's high quality of legal framework, low tolerance for corruption, efficient regulatory framework and open markets.
     This year, the overall score of Hong Kong has improved after two years of decline and as a result, Hong Kong’s lead over Singapore, the second freest economy, has widened further. "Notwithstanding Hong Kong’s improved performance in this report, the Government is fully aware of the keen competition globally and the rapid economic development of our peers in the region.  To maintain Hong Kong's competitive edge, the Government will continue to uphold the free market principles, the cornerstones of our economic prosperity." said a Government spokesman.

     The 2017 Index of Economic Freedom Report was released by the Heritage Foundation on February 15 (US time).  Hong Kong has been ranked the world's freest economy for the 23rd consecutive years since the index was first published in 1995.  On a scale of 0 to 100, the overall rating of Hong Kong in this year’s report was 89.8, 1.2 point higher than that of the previous year and well above the global average of 60.9.

Ends/Thursday, February 16, 2017
Issued at HKT 9:50