Hong Kong chief executive Leung Chun-ying promised a continued moderation in home prices, a new look at working hours and a commitment to political independence, in his fourth annual policy address to a populace that is losing faith in his ability to resolve the city's pressing issues.
The city, one of two special administrative regions of China (Macau is the other), has long struggled with pricey housing, a costly standard of living and a lack of free elections; all factors that have pushed Leung's popularity rating to its lowest level since he took office in 2012, according to a Tuesday poll by the Hong Kong University Public Opinion Program.
Lee Cheuk-Yan, Legislative Council member and vice chairman of the opposition Labor Party, told CNBC that Hong Kongers had reason to complain.
"People have to wait on average three years and six months before they can get public flats, there are no standard working hours and the universal pension fund scheme is still under discussion," he said.
"If you live in private units, rents are so high that it can eat up 75 percent of your income. We don't see any improvement on this and we can't expect anything from Leung because supply has gone down, waiting times have increased and wages haven't improved."