HK trails Shanghai, Singapore in quality-of-life survey

June 13, 2016 13:01
Housing and education are two issues about which Hongkongers care most, and they are unhappy about what the government has done to resolve them. Photo: Bloomberg

Seven out of 10 Hongkongers say life in the city has become worse since they started living in it, and more than two out of five would move away if they could, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Monday.

The survey of well-being, which measured perceptions of quality of life among residents of Hong Kong, Singapore and Shanghai, was done by independent public policy think tank Civic Exchange between September last year and January. There were 1,500 respondents from each of the cities.

When asked to rate how satisfied they were with their lives, Shanghainese gave the highest average rating: 7.4 out of 10.

Singaporeans scored 7.1 and Hongkongers 5.8.

The issues that Hongkongers are most concerned about are housing, quality of government and education. In none of these three areas are they satisfied, the survey found.

Two-thirds of Hongkongers feel their city is not a good place for children to grow up in, compared with only 16 percent in Shanghai and 13 percent in Singapore.

Maura Wong, chief executive of Civic Exchange, said the results are quite shocking and could be the result of the lack of discussion about education in Hong Kong in recent years.

Wong called for the government to look into the problems and take appropriate measures.

It was equally alarming that 42 percent of the Hong Kong respondents would move elsewhere if they were free to choose, compared with just 17 percent in Shanghai and 20 percent in Singapore.

Professor Michael DeGolyer, a fellow of Civic Exchange, was quoted by am730 as saying the survey has clearly pointed to serious problems in Hong Kong’s education system.

The situation could get worse if no action is taken, DeGolyer said.

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