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CY Leung: HK unable to fund Taylor Swift concert Like Singapore without fund disclosure

Former HK chief executive Leung Chun-ying asserts Hong Kong’s inability to fund concerts such as Taylor Swift’s with taxpayer money without transparent disclosure as Singapore’s Minister Edwin Tong remains tight-lipped about the undisclosed sum for its exclusive deal.



HONG KONG: Leung Chun-ying (梁振英), the former chief executive of Hong Kong, highlighted a key difference between Hong Kong and Singapore in utilizing public funds for exclusive Taylor Swift concerts.

Unlike Singapore, where such expenditures are discreetly managed, Leung emphasized that Hong Kong’s residents are highly conscious of transparency when it comes to taxpayer money.

In an interview with the South China Morning Post in Beijing, Mr Leung suggested that the Hong Kong government could enhance its efforts to compete with rival cities in attracting high-income tourists.

Despite proposals from lawmakers and industry representatives advocating for Hong Kong to adopt similar practices in the future, Leung expressed scepticism, stating that he “simply could not imagine the Hong Kong government doing that”.

“I don’t think the Hong Kong government can get away with paying taxpayers’ money, whatever the cause is, without telling people how much. ”

“Many other governments don’t do that either,” Mr Leung said.

Mr Leung, currently serving as a vice-chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC,中国人民政治协商会议), China’s top political advisory body, emphasized, “The Hong Kong government always tells the public how much money has been spent on what.”

“The Hong Kong government always tells the public how much money has been spent on what.”

Despite the need for transparency, Leung acknowledged the urgency for Hong Kong to swiftly implement effective tourism strategies in the face of intense competition from neighbouring cities.

“We should look at it as a question of speed. We are living in a highly competitive environment, internationally and also nationally.”

MCCY Minister declined to reveal amount spent on Taylor Swift’s show

In contrast, while Mr Leung emphasizes transparency, acknowledging Hong Kong residents’ concern over taxpayer spending, Edwin Tong, Singapore’s Minister for Culture, Community, and Youth (MCCY), declined to disclose the exact amount allocated for the exclusive Taylor Swift deal.

Despite public scrutiny, Minister Tong defended the decision during a recent parliamentary session, emphasizing that the government “moved fast and early” to bring Taylor Swift’s show to Singapore.

During a Parliamentary sitting on 4 March, he told the House that the government was mindful of the holistic approach to securing the show.

Addressing speculation about the grant’s size, Mr Tong clarified that the reported figures were inaccurate and not as high as rumoured.

However, he refrained from disclosing the exact amount due to business confidentiality reasons.

“I can assure members of the House that economic benefits to Singapore are assessed to be significant and outweigh the size of the grant.”

Mr Tong went on to highlight that the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) independently assessed the potential benefits of bringing the concert to Singapore.

Subsequently, STB offered a grant to the concert promoter after carefully weighing the anticipated benefits for Singapore.

In response to a supplementary question from Ms Usha Chandradas, a nominated MP, Mr Tong confirmed the existence of a confidentiality agreement between the Singapore government over the exclusive arrangement and Taylor Swift’s team as part of the concert deal.

Earlier, Minister Tong in a CNA interview dismissed figures presented by Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin on the expenses incurred for the deal, asserting that the actual amount is considerably lower than widely reported.

“What I’ll say is this: The numbers that you see online—it is nowhere as high as what is being speculated.”

No POFMA order to Thai PM and Bangkok Post over SG-Taylor Swift’s deal claim

Thai PM Srettha had earlier been quoted by the Bangkok Post on 16 February, saying that the global concert promoter Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG) informed him the Singapore government financially supported Taylor Swift’s concerts, offering US$2 million to 3 million per show in exchange for exclusivity in Southeast Asia.

This arrangement would imply that the government was set to pay around US$10 to 18 million for the six concerts hosted by Taylor Swift.

CNA further clarified in its report that it understands the figure to be closer to US$2 million to US$3 million in total for all six shows.

Questions arise regarding the credibility of such an exclusive deal for a modest sum of US$3 million, prompting inquiries into Minister Tong’s reluctance to issue a POFMA correction against the Bangkok Post for what he deems a falsehood.

The Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulation Act (POFMA) was introduced as a measure against disinformation from both local and foreign actors.

This highlights concerns about the effectiveness of POFMA in addressing disinformation from foreign sources.

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HK’s ICAC is independent. Whereas SG’s CPIB sleep with the PAP and make up the bed after.

Also PAP has a blank cheque from the voters. It can do anything without accountability and transparency. POFMA is used for this purpose, to hide the truth.

HK politicians behave like humans, speak logic, down to earth, accountable to their people.

SG politicians, devils – cunning, fraudulent, arrogant bastards, disregard the people, WHOLESALE. Cheat their people’s Reserves.

吊 ,


Sgrean want transparency But our Elites dun want … …No transparency and accountability!!!

Good point, how can pap fund Taylor Swift’s concert with taxpayer money without being transparent about it? Did the citizens give Singapore’s Minister Edwin Tong a blank cheque? They were also tight-lipped about HC undisclosed salary too. So we did give them the blank cheque. Oh yeah Bruno is coming too.

We have experienced this many times but still keep electing the PAP. 70 % of Singaporeans suffer from the Stockholm Syndrome of repeated wife abuse and need to see a mental health specialist before the next elections. LHL has said once elected you accept every one of their actions. They won’t tell you anything even ET who is a Lawyer.

All have to sit UP like a STRAIGHT ROD – notice HOW Tong THREATENED people. When the slap is on his own face WITHOUT transparency YET got the cheek to THREATEN anyone EXPOSES the DISHONEST Pap.

Who decides Isawaran can roam freely in Australia.

Being a gentleman means honesty, open, transparent. The kind of behaviour from Tong refuses and refused to disclose how much PAP Administration RAIDED tax payers savings to fund Swift performances, MEANS there is an UNKNOWN evil in the PAP Administration that causes them to be corrupted in honesty or openness.

It’s common PAP DNA when public ffunds are used to further the PAP objectives – how is it they can claim to benefit the economy WHEN IT IS NOT EXACTLY SPELT out in clear terms and references of outcomes each citizen enjoy.

We cannot blame HK for being transparent to her people. SG is not like HK. We are nurtured under a climate of fear. CNN or BBC can just grab a few strangers on the streets and get real specimens of living organisms eg Humans , who are Self-Censuring as if it’s second nature (by nurture or culture) when asked to comment on unpopular policies like COE etc. Many don’t want to comment or don’t have any idea what to comment because they are brought up to shy away from such topics. SG is Not HK or the rest of the… Read more »

Statements like this cuts through bullshit, obfuscation and spin, … like knife through butter !!!

Whilst most have been celebrating, bragging and showboating about SillyPore’s great achievement in securing TS’s exclusive performances on the island, … they can’t see the forest for the trees !!!

Then again, … only in SillyPore eh, ignorance is bliss indeed !!!

Was this taxpayer funding for exclusivity anti-competitive and illegal in nature?

Does this confidential clause use to cover up the breaking of the anti-competition law?


What the CE meant is that Singapore is MORE COMMUNIST than HK!


See our POLICE powers…….no need WARRANT to enter your home ……Like RED GUARDS!

this is the great differences in open, transparency and above board reporting, even the CE if caught corrupted could be jailed and do time… Taxpayers’ monies is not for just one man to play around with…see the happening of the Tpt Minister as corrupted case.