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    《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?

    2016/04/24 06:00

    ◎ 茅毅

    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.

    始於2014年9月22日、被稱為「雨傘運動」的香港抗議活動業於同年12月落幕。該運動最終在中國政府甚至不發一紙官方聲明的情況下劃下句點。箇中原因在於該運動未能對香港經濟造成傷害。

    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.

    香港經濟以進出口最為緊要,以2013年為例,占香港國內生產毛額達25%,而在該運動期間,併計進出口的貿易總額之年增率幾近5%。數據亦顯示,2014年該運動期間的貿易總額甚至略高於2015年同期。該運動期間的失業率及低度就業率分別維持在3.3%及1.5%,也就沒那麼令人意外。

    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.

    以上數據顯示,該運動期間的香港經濟表現,甚至優於去年同期:簡言之,該運動對香港經濟的影響令人「無感」。

    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.

    因此不同於過去曾對香港經濟造成影響的抗議活動,當地經濟此次遭受的影響微乎其微,這也就是「雨傘運動」不成功的主因。在香港經濟的零售及企業部門未受影響的情況下,抗議人士無法施壓中國政府改變政策;只要香港經濟保持穩定,北京就幾無給予港人普選權利的動機。

    新聞辭典

    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。)

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