ECONOMY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

US-China trade war could cost one in 5 Hong Kong jobs: FS Chan

The trading and logistics industry, which employs over 700,00 people, remains highly vulnerable.

A full-blown trade war between global superpowers US and China could negatively impact one in five jobs in Hong Kong, according to Financial Secretary Paul Chan.

This comes as China raised import duties on $3b list of US pork, apples and other consumer products in retaliation to the earlier US tariff hike on steel and aluminum.

Growing tensions between the economic giants will surely be felt across the local industry as both the US and China are major economic partners of Hong Kong. The US is Hong Kong’s second largest export market whilst the Mainland considers Hong Kong as its third largest trading partner.

Also read: HKC files protest over 23.6% steel and aluminum tariff hike

In his blog, Chan stressed the importance of free trade to the success of the global economy, believing that a trade war would ultimately leave no winner.

“Free trade is an important foundation of our success. The total value of traded goods and services was about 375% of our gross domestic product,” the FS noted.

Chan expects the trading and logistics industry to be largely hit should a massive dispute on a global scale erupt. “Trading and logistics is a pillar industry of Hong Kong, contributing to some 22 per cent of GDP and employing some 730,000 people. Roughly one-fifth of our labour force work in the sector,” he added.

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