August 18, 2023
BEIJING – Hong Kong’s labor market continues to show improvement, with a drop in the unemployment rate and a remarkable upswing in job opportunities signaling a sustained economic recovery.
The Census and Statistics Department’s data released on Thursday showed that Hong Kong’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate edged down 0.1 percentage point to 2.8 percent from May through July, compared with the April-through-June period.
Most other sectors also saw a decrease in the unemployment rate, most notably the transportation sector, the information and communications sector, and the real estate sector
The underemployment rate remained unchanged during the period, at 1.1 percent.
With the jobless rate dropping across most major economic sectors, the city’s total employment saw a consistent increase from May through July compared with the second quarter of this year, rising from 3,688,800 to 3,708,000, marking a gain of 19,200.
The number of people without work fell to 111,700, down by about 1,900 from 113,600.
Over the same period, the city’s labor force saw an increase of around 17,300, from 3,802,400 to 3,819,700.
“With the economic recovery, the labor market should improve further in the coming months,” Secretary for Labour and Welfare Chris Sun Yuk-han said.
Hong Kong’s labor market has been improving since the three-month period ending in April 2022, when the jobless rate hit 5.4 percent, as the city gradually recovers from the fifth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic after scrapping all anti-virus restrictions early this year.
The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government has launched a series of measures this year aimed at revitalizing the city’s economy, including the Hello Hong Kong promotion event, the Happy Hong Kong campaign, and the distribution of consumption vouchers.
According to the latest figures, the unemployment rate in consumption- and tourism-related sectors declined by 0.3 percentage point to 3.7 percent over the period from May to July from the April-through-June period. Specifically, the unemployment rate in the retail and accommodation services both dropped 0.2 percentage point to 3.3 percent and 2.8 percent respectively. The food-and-beverage-services unemployment rate fell 0.5 percentage point to 4.3 percent.
Most other sectors also saw a decrease in the unemployment rate, most notably the transportation sector, the information and communications sector, and the real estate sector.
Against the backdrop, Hong Kong businesses have become more active in recruiting workers. The monthly average vacancies from the private sector rose 3.1 percent year-on-year to 103,859 from May through July.
The Labour Department said it will organize the Building a Multicultural Workplace Job Fair at the MacPherson Stadium in Mong Kok on Tuesday and Wednesday. With more than 45 employers participating, the event is expected to offer a multitude of job opportunities.
As such, the General Administration of China Customs (GACC) slapped conditions regarding shipment of crabs and eel fish from Bangladesh.
Later, the fisheries office developed a surveillance system to reduce contamination in crabs, trained farmers in safe rearing practices and started testing consignments before clearing exports, officials said.
“We are now issuing certificates in line with standards of GACC. We are also training farmers and stakeholders to fulfil the requirements of Chinese authorities to promote exports,” said Sujit Chatterjee, deputy director of fish inspection and quality control at the DoF.
He said exporters are now exporting crabs by complying with rules.