For a significant amount of time Hong Kong has been one of the world’s most important financial hubs; however this status could change if China is going to react too drastically to pro-democracy protests which are currently affecting the city.

Hong Kong is right there at the top, economically speaking – worldwide, in fact, if one is to believe the regular conclusion reached by the “Index of Economic Freedom” published by the US think tank Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal.

For the 20th time in a row, the report put the former British colony at the global forefront as the location with the most business-friendly climate. The city is still profiting from its special status as a bridgehead for business dealings with China.

It is true that Hong Kong’s economic clout has lessened since it was returned to Beijing, and also as a result of the economic boom in the People’s Republic: in 1997, the year of the handover, Hong Kong was still contributing 16 percent of the entire Chinese gross domestic product, whereas today it provides a meager 3 percent.But Hong Kong is still “indispensable” to China’s economy as a financial staging post, “The Economist” maintained at the end of September.