East Asia Watch

To buoy or not to buoy Hong Kong's post-protest economy?

After years of fostering closer economic ties with the territory, Beijing is pondering its strategy following months of anti-China protests in Hong Kong

When billionaire investor George Soros unleashed a speculative attack against the Hong Kong dollar and stock market in 1998, then Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji vowed to avert a financial crisis in the city "at all costs".

China was not that well off then, but dug into its war chest - foreign exchange reserves of about US$139 billion at the end of 1997 compared with about US$3 trillion (S$4.1 trillion) as of end-September this year - to bail out the former British colony, which had reverted to Chinese rule just a year earlier.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 10, 2019, with the headline To buoy or not to buoy Hong Kong's post-protest economy?. Subscribe