Eligible Hong Kong permanent residents and new immigrants will receive the next round of consumption vouchers from 16 July, said Hong Kong's finance chief Paul Chan, adding that the government is unlikely to regularise the spending voucher scheme.
Chan said on Monday that the second phase of the scheme will be distributed from 16 July, aiming to inject approximately HK$13 billion into the local economy. The vouchers will be distributed to digital wallets chosen by the applicants including Octopus, Bank of China’s BOC Pay, HSBC’s PayMe, AlipayHK, Tap & Go and WeChat Pay HK. Meanwhile, new applications for the vouchers can be made from June 5 to June 27.
When asked whether this would be the last time to hand out consumption vouchers, Chan stressed that the scheme will hardly become a "regular event" and the handing out of spending vouchers in the future will depend on the economic, social, and people's livelihood conditions at the time.
"In the past few years, we have distributed spending vouchers as part of our economic recovery efforts to mitigate the impact of the pandemic. The pandemic has now been brought under control and tourists have come back since our borders were reopened," he said.
“It will be very difficult to distribute the vouchers regularly in long term as they were meant to boost the economy during the pandemic, and the city is recovering," Chan added.
Back in April this year, the first instalment of this year's consumption voucher scheme was disbursed to 6.4 million HongKongers via cashless platforms such as PayMe from HSBC and WeChat Pay HK. For the third consecutive year, this move by the Hong Kong government indicates the increase in acceptance of cashless payments in the Hong Kong consumption market since the pandemic, and it also demonstrates the government's effort to boost local economy.
First launched in 2021, the consumption voucher scheme (CVS) allowed each eligible residents receiving e-coupons worth HK$5,000. The amount was doubled to HK$10,000 during the city’s fifth coronavirus wave last year, aiming to encourage spending to support the economy.
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