June 1, 2023
HONG KONG –The International Monetary Fund has reaffirmed Hong Kong’s status as a major international financial center in a detailed assessment of the city’s economic and financial situation.
In its Staff Report, prepared by the IMF Article IV Mission as endorsed by the Executive Board, the IMF recognized the special administrative region’s strongly recovering economy while pointing out that the HKSAR government is proactively solidifying city’s status as a global financial hub.
The IMF said the transition to the post-pandemic new normal in both the HKSAR and the Chinese mainland could be smoother and more rapid than anticipated “with strong pent-up demand, leading to a faster-than expected economic recovery including inbound tourism”
“The financial system remains resilient and continues to serve as an international financial center, supported by strong institutional frameworks and substantial capital and liquidity buffers,” the IMF said in a statement.
“The Linked Exchange Rate System continues to function smoothly, providing a solid anchor to the economy and the financial system, allowing the latter to perform its role as an international financial center,” it added.
The IMF said the transition to the post-pandemic new normal in both the HKSAR and the Chinese mainland could be smoother and more rapid than anticipated “with strong pent-up demand, leading to a faster-than expected economic recovery including inbound tourism.”
“The Hong Kong SAR economy is recovering strongly with post-COVID normalization of economic activity. Exports of tourism services and domestic economic activity, in particular private consumption, are expected to normalize,” it added.
Paul Chan Mo-po, financial secretary of the HKSAR government, welcomed the IMF’s highly positive evaluation of Hong Kong.
“The Staff Report commends Hong Kong’s financial resilience amid the pandemic and challenging external environment, and recognizes the HKSAR government’s efforts in bolstering Hong Kong’s long-term economic and financial developments,” Chan said.
Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority Eddie Yue Wai-man said he welcomed the IMF’s reaffirmation of the robustness and resilience of the city’s banking and financial system.
The IMF Article IV Mission visited Hong Kong from March 20 to March 31, 2023. Discussions were held with HKSAR government officials, financial regulators and private sector representatives.
The Concluding Statement setting out the Mission’s preliminary assessment was published on May 5, 2023. The Staff Report was endorsed by the IMF Executive Board on May 17, 2023.