Written by: Yue Yueting
2020-02-20 19:10Last updated: 2020-02-20 19:10
From 2018 to the present, Hong Kong has been hit by the triple blow of the Sino-US trade war, local social movements and Wuhan pneumonia, which is the biggest perfect storm since the port opened. Sheng Zhiwen, who has the "Bridge of Business" who once turned Ocean Park into a profit and made over 100 million yuan a year, how do you view this "headwind"?
Hong Kong's economy has fallen into negative growth, and Wuhan's pneumonia epidemic is raging. Sheng Zhiwen estimates that Hong Kong's economy will shrink by 3% to 5% in the second quarter. The retail, tourism and catering industries will be hit hard. The unemployment wave is inevitable.
Sheng Zhiwen's "Prideful Work" Lan Kwai Fong, Central, as a restaurant and bar concentration area, is also affected like other industry peers. Last year, from December to January, the business situation improved slightly, but it was a short-lived one. Many companies now allow employees to work from home, and citizens have reduced their outings. Sheng Zhiwen said: "Some restaurants still haven't reopened; some restaurant owners have returned to the mainland during the Chinese New Year and they haven't been able to return; many tenants have difficulty paying rent I am looking for ways to assist them; the group has provided employees with masks and hand sanitizers, and stepped up disinfection and cleaning. "He admits that many people are worried about their health and are afraid of losing their jobs. As a boss, you have to talk to employees. Keep communicating and give them confidence.
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Sheng Zhiwen revealed that Lan Kwai Fong's business improved slightly from December to January, but now many companies allow employees to work from home, and the public has reduced their outing, which has greatly affected the business (Photos by Yuan Yuan)
Unforgettable Lan Kwai Fong tragedy
Sheng Zhiwen has been in business for more than 30 years, and has encountered many adversities. Among them, Lan Guifang had a tragedy on New Year's Day in 1993. Sheng Zhiwen said that this was the most terrible thing in his life. "A lot of life is gone, I am sad , But always move on (continue to move forward) ". At that time, Lan Kwai Fong's business was similar to the current one. No one wanted to come to Lan Kwai Fong. He worked hand in hand with the tenants and employees and slowly survived this low tide, about 4 After a month, the flow of people began to increase. After half a year, the business returned to normal. After that, Langui Festival will organize a large-scale event, which will strengthen the flow of people and set up railings to separate people to ensure people's safety. SARS was another difficult time for Lan Kwai Fong, but it allowed him to gain experience in dealing with the Wuhan pneumonia epidemic.
"At that time, citizens were reluctant to go out and stay at home. The panic level was much higher than now!" At that time, the tenants of Lan Kwai Fong were doing disinfection and epidemic prevention work. After the epidemic situation was over, China was free to travel, and a large number of mainland tourists and travel The delegation's visit made Hong Kong's retail and tourism industry recover quickly. Sheng Zhiwen is convinced that the epidemic will also be like this. "Hubei and Wuhan have a long distance from Hong Kong and believe that the spread of the epidemic in Hong Kong is not as severe as in the SARS period."
The retail industry was breezy, and the flow of people at Langham Place Mall in Mong Kok was significantly reduced. Sheng Zhiwen described restaurants, shops and malls as "quiet enough to shoot black flies", and the situation was miserable.
Fairly benefits everyone
Affected by the perfect storm, Hong Kong's economy contracted by 1.2% last year, the first annual decline since 2009. The Hong Kong government said that the economic outlook for this year is still highly uncertain, and the epidemic may weigh on economic sentiment and activities related to consumption and tourism. Sheng Zhiwen said that visitors to Hong Kong are a major driving force for consumption. They will visit theme parks, shop in malls and stores, and Hong Kong will be dead without tourists (without tourists, Hong Kong is dead). Even without this epidemic, the Sino-US trade war and the continued social movements for many months have plunged Hong Kong into a recession. The pneumonia epidemic in Wuhan is bound to worsen the global economy. Because China accounts for one-fifth of the world's GDP, the global economy and the supply chain are interlocked. If China's economy declines, other countries, including Hong Kong, will be implicated.
So how should Hong Kong respond to this crisis? Sheng Zhiwen said that the Hong Kong government must show leadership, listen to public opinion, and work with the public to cope with the Wuhan pneumonia epidemic, and then resolve housing, social and educational issues to get Hong Kong back on track.
As one of the representatives of the business community, Sheng Zhiwen said that he should not only take care of big consortia, but also benefit everyone fairly. "Do things that may affect the free market, but make Hong Kong a better place."
Shengzhi Wenlan Kwai Fong Group Hong Kong Economy