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Hong Kong is a vibrant city, and a major gateway to China. This page will give you the facts about Hong Kong – from the form of government to the languages used.

Government

Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. Following British rule from 1842 to 1997, China assumed sovereignty under the 'one country, two systems' principle. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region's constitutional document, the Basic Law, ensures that the current political situation will remain in effect for 50 years. The rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong are based on the impartial rule of law and an independent judiciary.

  • Head of Government: Chief Executive
  • Cabinet: Executive Council
  • Legislature: Legislative Council, 70 seats
  • Highest Court: Court of Final Appeal

Economy

Hong Kong's economy is characterised by free trade, low taxation and minimum government intervention. It is the world's 8th largest trading economy, with the mainland of China as its most significant trading partner. Hong Kong is also a major service economy, with particularly strong links to mainland China and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region.

  • Currency: Hong Kong dollar
  • GDP: HK$2,022.2 billion (2013)
  • GDP per capita: HK$295,303 (2013)
  • Real GDP growth: +2.9% (2013)
  • Labour force: 3.87 million (2013)

Public Holidays

Hong Kong provides two types of public holidays: statutory and general holidays. Statutory holidays are mandated under the Employment Ordinance and must be provided to all employees. General holidays include every Sunday, all statutory holidays and an additional 5 holidays.

  • Working week: Monday to Saturday
  • Statutory holidays: 12
  • General holidays: 17 (including the 12 statutory holidays)

Geography

At the south-eastern tip of China, Hong Kong covers Hong Kong Island, Lantau Island, the Kowloon Peninsula and the New Territories, including 262 outlying islands. Between Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula lies Victoria Harbour, one of the world's most renowned deep-water harbours.

  • Total area: 1 104 square kilometres
  • Land developed: less than 25%
  • Country parks and nature reserves: 40%

Climate

Hong Kong's climate is sub-tropical, with temperatures dropping below 10 degrees Celsius in winter and exceeding 31 degrees Celsius in summer. It is warm, sunny and dry in autumn, cool and dry in winter, and hot, humid and rainy from spring to summer.

  • Average annual rainfall: 2 847.3mm
  • Wettest months: May
  • Driest months: February

Population

Hong Kong's population was approximately 7.15 million in 2012. People of Chinese descent comprise the vast majority of the population, with foreign nationals comprising 8%.

  • Population density: 6 650 people per square kilometre
  • Crude birth rate: 7.9 per 1000
  • Percentage of population Chinese descent: 91%
  • Other significant national groups
    • Philippines (168 850 total)
    • Indonesia (165 170 total)
    • India (28 920 total).

Language

Chinese and English are the official languages of Hong Kong. English is widely used in the Government and by the legal, professional and business sectors. Trilingual professionals who speak English, Cantonese and Putonghua play a vital role in the numerous enterprises trading in Hong Kong or doing business with mainland China and Taiwan.

  • Cantonese speakers: 89.5% of population
  • Putonghua speakers: 1.38% of population
  • Other Chinese dialect speakers: 3% of population
  • English speakers: 3.49% of population
  • Other language speakers: 2.63% of population

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Last review date: August 2014

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  • Web Accessibility Recognition Scheme
  • Hong Kong ICT Awards 2009 - Best Public Service Application (Website) Silver Award
  • Web Care Award 2011-13 - Ruby Award
  • Web Marketing Association's WebAward 2012 - Standard of Excellence Award
  • Web Marketing Association's WebAward 2014 - Standard of Excellence Award
  • Interactive Media Awards 2011 - Best in Class Award (Government)
  • Interactive Media Awards 2012 - Best in Class Award (Government)
  • Interactive Media Awards 2014 - Best in Class Award (Government)
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