Hong Kong’s poorest struggle to benefit from post-pandemic recovery with wealth gap at its worst in over 10 years, Oxfam warns
Poverty report from Oxfam Hong Kong also finds wealthiest 10 per cent of city’s households earned 57.7 times more than bottom 10 per cent in first quarter‘Economically inactive households make up a large proportion of bottom 10 per cent. They are mainly elderly people and homemakers that have low or no income,’ it addsHong Kong societyEmily HungandJess MaPublished: 9:23pm, 19 Sep, 2023Why you can trust SCMP
Hong Kong’s wealth gap has further widened to its worst in more than a decade, the local branch of international charity group Oxfam has warned, with the city’s poorest residents still struggling to recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
An annual poverty report from Oxfam Hong Kong published on Tuesday found the wealthiest 10 per cent of the city’s households earned 57.7 times more than the bottom 10 per cent during the first quarter, up from 34.3 times in 2019.
“Economically inactive households make up a large proportion of the bottom 10 per cent. They are mainly elderly people and homemakers who have low or no income,” said Wong Shek-hung, director of the charity’s Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan programme.
“Even if they wanted to work, the job positions created amid the pandemic have largely disappeared and the rapid digitalisation of the catering and retail industry, like mobile ordering, has also taken away many low-skilled jobs.”
Oxfam Hong Kong also said that 20 per cent of the population, or 1.36 million residents, in the first quarter of this year were living below the poverty line, meaning they earned less than half of the median household income level.