Paul Chan Mo-po, Hong Kong's financial secretary, delivers the annual budget at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, Feb 24, 2020. (CALVIN NG / CHINA DAILY)
HONG KONG - Financial Secretary of China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government Paul Chan Mo-po said on Sunday that Hong Kong's exclusion from the Heritage Foundation's 2021 Index of Economic Freedom was a result of political bias.
The foundation released on March 4 the 2021 Index of Economic Freedom report, analyzing the level of economic freedom of 178 economies. Hong Kong was not included in this report.
In his blog, Chan said that according to the foundation's consistent assessment criteria on economic freedom, the strength of Hong Kong in areas including financial freedom, trade freedom, business freedom and fiscal health has not changed during the assessment period.
It was the foundation that has changed the rules of the game, causing Hong Kong to "disappear" from the report, he said.
More than 9,000 Chinese mainland and multinational enterprises operating in Hong Kong continue to expand their business in Hong Kong, showing that Hong Kong's attractiveness to investors is determined by market potential, development opportunities and investment returns, Chan said.
According to the 2020 Index of Economic Freedom report by the Heritage Foundation, Hong Kong was ranked second.
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