PRESS DIGEST- Hong Kong - Feb 5

HONG KONG Tue Feb 4, 2014 8:58pm EST

HONG KONG Feb 5 (Reuters) - These are some of the leading stories in Hong Kong newspapers on Wednesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

-- Dozens of Hong Kong-based cabin crew could lose their jobs after Virgin Atlantic announced it would suspend its daily service between Hong Kong and Sydney from May 5 as part of a cost-cutting plan after losses of 173 million pound ($282 million) in the past two years. ()

-- Hong Kong's retail sales grew just 5.7 percent year on year in December, an especially poor performance for the peak Christmas shopping period. ()

-- With a massive 4G network expansion under way on the mainland, the market's leading smartphone suppliers and their mobile chip providers are in a rush to keep pace with the rapid deployment in hundreds of cities, where subscribers were still tied to old 2G infrastructure. ()

THE STANDARD

-- Up to 30 core members of the Democratic Party will join the Occupy Central movement if universal suffrage by 2017 is not an outcome of the current political reform process, and they will take an oath outside the old Legislative Council building in Hong Kong's Central. ()

-- The stock exchange listing committee is set to review the principle of one share, one vote. This comes after e-commerce giant Alibaba failed to list last year due to the rule as it wanted the listed entity to be controlled by its founders who did not hold a majority stake. ()

HONG KONG ECONOMIC JOURNAL

-- Chinese developer Evergrande Real Estate Group Ltd had repurchased 350 million shares, representing 2.2 percent of its issued share capital, in the open market between Jan. 27 and 30 for an aggregate HK$1.068 billion ($137.5 million), according to the stock exchange disclosure.

HONG KONG ECONOMIC TIMES

-- Hong Kong restaurants generated HK$97 billion ($12.49 billion) revenue in 2013, up 3.5 percent from a year earlier, of which revenue from Chinese style restaurants eased 0.1 percent, according to the city's statistic department.

-- Sino Land plans to sell 2,500 residential units in the city this year, including apartments from three new projects.

MING PAO DAILY NEWS

-- Fast food chain McDonald's will raise menu price by an average 2.2 percent in Hong Kong effective on Wednesday to compensate rising cost in food and rent, according to the company's spokesperson in Hong Kong.

-- A total of 590,000 visitors visited Macau during the first four days of Chinese lunar new year, an increase of 24.4 percent from a year earlier. Of which mainland visitors totalled 415,000, up 38.5 percent from the previous year.

SING TAO DAILY

-- Temasek Holdings had sold 50 million H-shares of Shanghai Pharmaceuticals on Jan. 29 for HK$920 million, reducing its stake in the firm to 9.81 percent from 16.33 percent.

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