According to the standard economic benchmarks,
Hong Kong slid into recession in November 2008.
Until now, the signs of recession on the streets have
been comparatively muted, but the usual signals have been
nonetheless evident. The run-up to Chinese New Year was
definitely low key in 2009. There were even some high street
sales in the days leading up to Christmas and Chinese New Year.
Ostentatious consumption appears to have gone out of fashion
early in 2009.
There are other clear indicators of a recessionary climate.
The container ships heading along Hong Kongs waterways
out to sea, for example, are fewer and ride higher. The
Territory has also been blessed with clearer, more
pollution-free weather, suggesting a significant downturn in
industrial activity, throughout the bordering areas of mainland
China. Ironically, it seems that slower economic activity can
also have a beneficial effect on the quality of life, as