《中英對照讀新聞》 Why Did Hong Kong’s Umbrella Movement Fail? 香港「雨傘運動」何以失敗？
In December 2014, the Umbrella Movement, Hong Kong protests that had started on September 22, ended. The protests were extinguished without so much as an official statement from the Chinese government. Why? The protest failed to hurt Hong Kong’s economy.
The crux of Hong Kong’s economy lies with its import and export economy, which in 2013 made up 25 percent of Hong Kong’s GDP. During the Umbrella Movement protests, total trade, a conglomeration of exports and imports, was up almost five percent over the previous year. Data also suggests that total trade during the 2014 protests was even slightly higher than during the same period of 2015. Less surprisingly, the unemployment and underemployment rates held constant at 3.3 percent and 1.5 percent during the protests.
The data indicates that Hong Kong’s economy during the protests was doing even better than a year before: simply put, the protests didn’t have a perceptible effect on the economy.
So unlike previous protests in Hong Kong that affected the economy, the lack of an even marginal effect on the economy was the main reason that the 2014 protest didn’t succeed. Without affecting the retail and business sectors of Hong Kong’s economy, the protesters could not pressure the Chinese government to change its policies; as long as the economy remained stable, Beijing had little incentive to grant suffrage to Hong Kong residents.
extinguish：及物動詞，熄滅（撲滅）、消失。例句：It took the firefighters several hours to extinguish the flames.（消防隊員用了幾個小時才把火撲滅。）
perceptible：形容詞，可感覺（察覺）到的。例句：The past year has been a perceptible improvement in working conditions.（工作條件於去年已有明顯改善。）
suffrage：名詞，選舉權、投票權、參政權。例句：The old regime stripped voters of their suffrage.（舊政權剝奪了選民的投票權。）