torsdag 1. august 2019

Hong Kong and Singapore, so similar yet so different – it’s all about housing, money and politics

Even as Hong Kong is engulfed in seemingly endless turmoil, Singapore remains as tranquil as its sleepy self ever was. Many Westerners, often quite naïve, tout both cities as paragons of free market economy to criticise their own governments. The two often top their list of the
freest economies.

But the stark contrast in their political fortunes tells us that the two cities are very different. In Hong Kong, money dominates politics, while political power is supreme in Singapore. This difference can explain much of what we see.Hong Kong and Singapore thrive by providing a playground for people from everywhere to take advantage of opportunities elsewhere. Low tax and lax regulation are the main attractions. Inevitably, their labour and asset markets are global. How could their people compete for good jobs or housing against the whole world? Singapore has figured that out, while Hong Kong’s ruling elite refuse to recognise this.