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$38.8b in relief measures unveiled

February 24, 2016

Financial Secretary John Tsang has proposed a package of relief measures to ease the burden of citizens and maintain spending power, and to support the local economy.


The measures will cost $38.8 billion and will boost GDP by 1.1%.


Delivering his 2016-17 Budget today, Mr Tsang proposed reducing salaries tax and tax under personal assessment for 2015-16 by 75%, subject to a ceiling of $20,000, and wave rates for 2016-17, subject to a ceiling of $1,000 per quarter.


He also proposed providing an extra allowance to Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients, equal to one month of the standard rate payments, and a month's extra payment to recipients of the Old Age, Old Age Living, and Disability Allowances.


The basic and single parent allowances will be increased from $120,000 to $132,000 and the married person’s allowance will rise from $240,000 to $264,000.


The allowance for maintaining a dependent parent or grandparent aged 60 or above will be raised from $40,000 to $46,000, while that for maintaining a dependent parent or grandparent aged between 55 and 59 will be raised from $20,000 to $23,000.


The deduction ceiling for elderly residential care expenses will also be raised from $80,000 to $92,000 for taxpayers whose parents or grandparents are admitted to residential care homes.


Mr Tsang noted that relief measures serve as a counter-cyclical measure to preserve economic stability and safeguard employment, and are subject to adjustments in light of the economic and financial position of the year.

The 2016-17 Budget