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1.8% inflation in October

Overall consumer prices rose 1.8% in October year-on-year, smaller than the 4.4% increase in September, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.   Netting out the effects of the Government's one-off relief measures, the underlying inflation rate was 1.7%, slightly less than September's 1.8%.   Compared with October last year, price increases were recorded for electricity, gas and water; clothing and footwear; meals out and takeaway food; basic food; alcoholic drinks and tobacco; transport; miscellaneous services, miscellaneous goods and housing.   On the other hand, a year-on-year decrease in price was recorded for durable goods.    The Government said that underlying consumer price inflation remained moderate in October.   The year-on-year increase in food prices showed some moderation, though remained relatively fast. Prices of clothing and footwear continued to record a visible increase, while those of energy-related items rose sharply. Price pressur

New quarantine hotel list issued

A total of 31 hotels will provide about 8,500 rooms under the fourth cycle of the Designated Quarantine Hotel Scheme, the Government announced today.   It issued letters to about 2,000 hotels with valid hotel or guesthouse licences on May 4 to invite applications for enlisting as designated quarantine hotels in the fourth cycle and 48 hotels applied.   Upon assessment, 31 hotels, including 30 in the third cycle, were shortlisted to provide about 8,500 rooms of various types and rates for selection by people arriving in Hong Kong from places outside China.   The contract period is from June 20 to August 31.   The Government continues to provide more hotels offering lower room rates in this new cycle after considering the market demand. The number of hotels offering room rates at $500 or below will increase from 13 to 17.   The first and second cycles of the scheme each involving 36 hotels ended on February 19 and April 20. There are 30 hotels in the third cycle, which will end on June 19.
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