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HK logs 3.3k COVID-19 cases

The Centre for Health Protection today said it is investigating 3,362 additional locally acquired COVID-19 cases, of which 493 were identified through nucleic acid tests and 2,869 via rapid antigen tests.   Separately, 118 imported cases were detected.   Furthermore, seven residential care homes for the elderly and one for disabled people logged nine cases involving their residents.   The Hospital Authority reported that 33 patients passed away in public hospitals. According to a preliminary analysis, the cause of death for 13 patients was related to COVID-19, while that of the remaining 20 patients was unrelated.   It also registered six more critical cases, bringing the number of patients in critical condition to 99.   As there were positive sewage test results with relatively high viral loads in several areas of Tuen Mun, Yuen Long and Kowloon City districts, the respective district offices will distribute COVID-19 rapid test kits to relevant residents as well as cleaning

Aid for venture capital in Qianhai

Hong Kong and Shenzhen today jointly promulgated 18 measures to support the linked development of Shenzhen and Hong Kong venture capital in Qianhai.   The Financial Services & the Treasury Bureau announced these measures together with the Authority of Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone. The 18 measures complement the three-step strategy implemented by Hong Kong for developing the private equity fund market.   These steps are the introduction of the limited partnership fund (LPF) regime; tax concessions for carried interest distributed by eligible private equity funds; establishment of a mechanism to attract foreign funds to re-domicile in Hong Kong, thereby providing support for the convergence of rules between Hong Kong LPFs and Qianhai Qualified Foreign Limited Partnerships (QFLPs).   The Qianhai Authority will support eligible Hong Kong LPFs to set up qualified investment entities in Qianhai to commence onshore investment. It will also enhance the QFLP pilot scheme, enhancing the entry threshold and application procedures, expanding the investment scope and reducing the processing time.   In addition, Qianhai and Hong Kong will explore the use of a cross-boundary supervisory sandbox mechanism to promote the linked development of Shenzhen and Hong Kong private equity markets.   There will also be collaboration to promote financial and technological development and talents exchange through providing rewards. For Qianhai Qualified Domestic Investment Enterprises investing in eligible Hong Kong innovation and technology enterprises or projects, a reward based on 2% of the amount of investment and up to RMB500,000 per investment will be provided with each enterprise to receive accumulated rewards of up to RMB2 million per year.   Meanwhile, RMB2 million will be rewarded to Qianhai venture capital institutions listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong to encourage Qianhai institutions to expand financing channels in Hong Kong capital markets.   For Qianhai venture capital institutions and their fully owned Hong Kong subsidiaries which act as promoters to set up Special Purpose Acquisition Companies and whose companies are allowed to be listed on the Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing (HKEX), RMB1 million will be rewarded to the Qianhai venture capital institutions.   For Qianhai high-quality infrastructure projects which are listed on the HKEX in the form of real estate investment trusts, RMB1 million will be rewarded to the owners of the projects.   Secretary for Financial Services & the Treasury Christopher Hui said the promulgation of the joint policy package with the Qianhai Authority is a breakthrough and an innovation.   "Going forward, we will explore with Qianhai more opportunities for financial development and promote Shenzhen-Hong Kong co-operation at a higher level under which the two cities can serve as dual engines in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area."

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