24 June 2017
The eruption of the “Umbrella Revolution” in October 2014, which spurred tens of thousands of protesters to occupy public areas over a three-month period, was a clear manifestation of the local people’s longstanding discontent with what they perceive as an unresponsive and unrepresentative SAR government. They hold the government accountable for the development of several economic and social “fault lines” that have had detrimental impact on their livelihoods.
Hong Kong’s “fault lines” stem from chronic income stagnation and growing inequality, the soaring cost of living driven by ever-rising housing prices, and depressing employment prospects for the young, especially those without a university education.
According to official statistics, the real wage index for non-professional and non-managerial employees has been on a downward trend for several years.
Even university graduates are facing increasingly bleak employment prospects due to an oversupply of graduates from eight government-funded academies plus a myriad of privately funded post-secondary institutions, as well as a mismatch between salary expectations and skills.
A former Hong Kong resident, Dr Friedrich Wu is an adjunct associate professor at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He previously served as an economics director at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and was chief economist at DBS Bank.
RSIS / Online / Print
Last updated on 28/06/2017