tax empty shops to deliver back careers, revive financial system

a man riding a skateboard up the side of a building: Hong Kong retailers have warned that bustling shopping districts such as Tsim Sha Tsui, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok would turn into “ghost towns” if retailers did not get any rental support from major landlords or the government. Photo: Bloomberg

Hong Kong merchants have warned that bustling searching districts these kinds of as Tsim Sha Tsui, Causeway Bay and Mong Kok would change into “ghost towns” if suppliers did not get any rental assist from significant landlords or the authorities. Picture: Bloomberg

I refer to your report “Coronavirus: Hong Kong faces new unemployment higher, but finance chief warns even worse might stick to Lunar New Year” (January 17). I discuss from the viewpoint of a retail businessman.

Quite a few shop house owners would fairly leave their homes vacant as an alternative of allowing the premises for a decreased rent. This is due to the fact cutting down the hire will drag down the property value. As a end result, the streets in procuring hotspots these as Tsim Sha Tsui and Causeway Bay have turn out to be pretty empty and uninteresting. The exact same holds legitimate in other districts as properly.

Rents are not generated from these unoccupied retailers, so there is much less earnings tax for the government. Business people are unable to manage the lease unless of course it is diminished, so new corporations and employment are not made. Instead, leaving the retailers vacant signifies that there are much less jobs and business things to do.

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Moreover, the gloomy atmosphere deters customers and lowers their willingness to devote, so it affects and demotivates individuals shops that remain open up. In easy conditions, obtaining an abundance of empty merchants is hugely detrimental to the financial sentiment as a total.

‘We will die’: Hong Kong organizations demand from customers instant easing of Covid-19 principles

Hong Kong is encountering a spending budget deficit and large unemployment rate. To generate tax income and develop positions, levying an vacant stores tax could incentivise assets house owners to let their outlets for a affordable hire.

Revitalising the streets with shops that are open for organization is an important move to reinvigorating the economic climate. The federal government should critically look at this answer.

Henry Kwan, Tsim Sha Tsui

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