The worst is over for some but not others

One thing Hong Kong is never short of is irony. One day after Joseph Yam, the world’s highest paid central banker, tried to put some halo on his imminent retirement by announcing with typical complacency and vanity that the taxpayers’ money lost during last year’s economic tsunami has been more than recouped, the newspaper published an article saying that one in six Hongkongers live in poverty.

According to the article, more than 1.23 million people in Hong Kong, representing 17.9 percent of the population, are living on income below the median level. Other troubling figures include 20 percent of youngsters living in poverty and a record number of youths between 15 and 24 unemployed.

Not only is the economic recovery not benefiting the grassroots class, the gap between the rich and the poor is widening.

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