Singapore becomes the main financial center in Asia, ahead of Hong Kong

Hong Kong is no longer at the top. The latter lost its title as Asia’s leading financial center to Singapore in a world ranking where New York and London retain first and second place respectively. Singapore climbed three places to third position in the semi-annual Global Financial Centers Index (GFCI) released on Thursday. The ranking evaluates the competitiveness of 119 financial centers around the world. Hong Kong has been applying a more flexible version of China’s “covid zero” strategy for more than two and a half years with strict sanitary measures and mandatory hotel quarantine.

This cost it its title as Asia’s leading financial center, plunged it into economic crisis and precipitated a brain drain to rivals in the region. By contrast, Singapore lifted its restrictions and reopened its borders earlier in the year, accepting the now endemic nature of the Covid-19 epidemic. The city-state is hosting a series of economic conferences in the coming months. Next week the Formula 1 Grand Prix will take place in Singapore and the country expects four million visitors this year.

In a statement of some 600 words, the Hong Kong government reacted to the ranking, saying it scored better than the previous year. “We will continue to listen to opinions and be bold in advancing reforms aimed at consolidating…

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