July 20, 2020 / 9:43 AM / 18 days ago

Hong Kong's "specialness" being eroded, zero growth plausible - S&P Global

LONDON, July 20 (Reuters) - The erosion of Hong Kong’s “specialness” and its rapidly aging population could see its trend growth more than halve over the next decade and even plunge to zero in “plausible” downside scenario, rating agency S&P Global estimated on Monday.

The firm said Hong Kong’s long-term economic prospects faced risks from the rapid deterioration in the U.S.-China relationship, resulting in a decoupling of the U.S. dollar and Chinese renminbi financial systems.

A second risk is an accelerated financial opening of mainland China that would lessen Hong Kong’s role as a conduit.

“Hong Kong’s specialness is being eroded,” S&P said in a new report. “A plausible downside scenario could see trend growth of zero in a decade,” it added, though its “baseline” estimate was for a more moderate a fall to just over 1% by 2030 from 2.7% in 2018. (Reporting by Marc Jones, editing by Karin Strohecker)

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