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CE meets Philippine senate president

Chief Executive John Lee today met visiting Philippine Senate President Juan Miguel Fernandez Zubiri to exchange views on matters of common interest.   Mr Lee said Hong Kong and the Philippines have maintained close exchanges and co-operation in various fields such as trade, investment and finance, and that Hong Kong is an important trading and investment partner for the Philippines and other Association of Southeast Asian Nations countries. He encouraged more Philippine enterprises and talent to develop in Hong Kong and make better use of its professional services and internationalised business environment for expanding into Mainland markets, including those of the Greater Bay Area.   As the city is striving for early entry to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, the Chief Executive thanked the Philippines for its support in Hong Kong’s bid for accession.

Jobless rate dips to 3%

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dipped 0.1 percentage points to 3% for the period between February and April 2023 compared with January to March 2023, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.   The underemployment rate remained unchanged at 1.2% in the two periods.   Total employment increased by about 1,800 to 3,655,900 while the labour force also rose by around 1,100 to 3,770,300.   There were 114,400 unemployed people from February to April 2023, a drop of around 700 from the preceding period. The number of underemployed decreased by around 2,200 to 44,500.   The combined unemployment rate of the consumption and tourism-related sectors remained unchanged at 4.2% in the two periods.   The unemployment rates of some sectors also declined, notably those of decoration, repair and maintenance for buildings, transportation sector and warehousing, and support activities for transportation sector.    While the unemployment rates of the remaining sectors either showed little change or increased, but stayed low in general.   Secretary for Labour & Welfare Chris Sun said the labour market should improve further in the coming months alongside the ongoing economic recovery.

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