Hong Kong’s economy shrank in the first quarter of the year as the city entered its harshest set of lockdown protocols in a bid to curb COVID-19 infections.
The financial hub’s economy contracted 4 percent in the first quarter from last year, after four quarters of growth, due to weaker performance in both domestic and external demand, government data showed on Tuesday.
Private consumption in the city dropped 5.4 percent. The previous quarter saw an increase of 5.3 percent.
Total exports of goods declined significantly at 4.5 percent, crashing from a sizable 13.5 percent growth in the fourth quarter of 2021.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the economy shrank 2.9 percent quarter-on-quarter.
“The global economy will continue to face significant challenges in the near term,” a government spokesperson said in a statement, citing uncertainties from rampant inflation, geopolitical tensions, and persisting supply chain issues.
Analysts expect Hong Kong’s economy to grow only 2.0 percent to 3.5 percent this year after having expanded 6.4 percent in 2021.
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