The 2017-18 Budget
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Budget Speech

Investing for the Future and Enhancing Liveability

25.    Second, the Government must be forward-looking and invest continuously for the future of Hong Kong.  We should create capacity for both development and environment, and enhance competitiveness, so that our economy and society can develop in a sustained manner and our living environment can keep improving.

26.    With respect to hardware, the Government has kept investing in infrastructure, including land production and expansion of the air, sea and land transport networks, to support our social and economic development.  The Government's annual expenditure on capital works projects has increased significantly from a mere $62.4 billion in 2012-13 to $86.8 billion in 2017-18, allowing the construction industry to contribute 4.7 per cent to our GDP.  I wish to point out that, other than improving people's quality of life and enhancing our business environment, these projects have created tens of thousands of jobs for the construction industry, transport industry and other trades.

27.    Human capital is Hong Kong's most important asset.  In the face of stiff competition from other economies and a new economic landscape arising from technological development, we must continue to invest heavily in nurturing talent for a knowledge-based economy and promote diversified and high value-added economic development for Hong Kong.  The current-term Government has made significant efforts to promote Innovation and Technology (I&T).  These include establishing the Innovation and Technology Bureau in November 2015, allocating over $18 billion so far to enhance our I&T ecosystem, providing funding support for universities and the industry to conduct research and development (R&D) activities and supporting start-ups.

28.    To improve people's quality of life, the Government is committed to developing Hong Kong into a smart city by leveraging I&T to enhance city management.  We have commenced a comprehensive study to formulate the policy objectives and a blueprint for developing Hong Kong into a smart city.

29.    The Government will continue to invest substantially to protect and enhance our environment, striving to further improve the air quality, water quality, green and blue assets and waste management; and step up efforts to combat climate change and conserve nature, thereby making Hong Kong an even more liveable city.



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Last revision date : 22 February 2017