Following the joint appeal by a formidable grouping of nine Hong Kong logistics organisations to the chief executive of the Hong Kong SAR Government last month for urgent relief measures for the industry, the grouping has now issued a follow-up appeal.
The group is urging the Hong Kong SAR government to “accelerate and prioritise” the implementation of the recommendations contained in the original request issued on 19 February 2020.
They underscore the fact that the freight and logistics industry is being hit hard by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as global supply chains are severely disrupted. With 95 per cent of the shipments cancelled, put on hold, or disrupted, logistics operators are facing unprecedented threats, tremendous risks from default payment and liquidity difficulties, the group says.
Without timely Government’s financial support will put the future of tens of thousands of SMEs and micro companies operating within the industry in closure, forcing thousands and thousands of workers out of job, they warn.
Writing to the Secretary for Transport and Housing Frank Chan on 30 March and led by Frankie Yick Chi-ming, member of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong for the Transport, the nine organisations represent the vast majority of logistics operators in one of the four pillars of the Hong Kong SAR economy.
The group has urged the SAR Government for the implementation of two of its recommendations be prioritised to face the burning issues, namely:
- Rental subsidies for a minimum of six months, with a ceiling of HKD 50,000 (USD 6,450) per month for offices premises and HKD 100,000 per month for warehouse space;
- Wage subsidies for a minimum of six months 50 per cent wage subsidy, with a ceiling of HKD 10,000 being half the median salary under Census and Statistics Department, per employee per month.
In addition, the influential grouping is calling for immediate acceleration of the implementation of Government-guaranteed loans of up to HKD 2.0 million per company, a key measure which is vital to support sustainable business development.
Co-signatories (in alphabetical order) to the letter are: the Federation of Hong Kong Industries (FHKI) – Group 21 Transport & Logistics Services Council; Hong Kong Association of Aircargo Truckers (HAAT); Hong Kong Association of Freight Forwarding and Logistics (HAFFA); Hong Kong Logistics Association (HKLA); Hong Kong Logistics Management Staff Association (HKLMSA); Hong Kong Sea Transport and Logistics Association (HKSTLA); The Chamber of Hong Kong Logistics Industry (CHKLI); The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in Hong Kong (CILTHK); and The Institute of Purchasing & Supply of Hong Kong (IPSHK).