Tuesday, June 27, 2006

富不過三代

世界第二首富,美國股神巴菲特深知「富不過三代」這個傳統,決定在7月開始把自己440億美元(3,418億港元)的85%財富(約2,905億港元)捐出,大部分會撥捐蓋茨成立的慈善基金(Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)。相信全球人士都會感謝美國股神的慷慨,巴菲特不贊成將財富留給子女。因為外國人擁有的世界觀(個別上),認為將財富集中在一人身上,不用諸社會,除了造成浪費外,後繼人不善用這筆金錢的話,資產只會成為其他商人或股市大鱷的獵物罷了。

至於中國人,市場呼籲華籍富豪向外國學習,未來成事機會應不高,因為遺產有既得利益者繼承。另一方面,我們應想想,無錢的人固然為賺錢而打併,包括本人在內,然而當錢財足夠衣食,如現時全港有8萬名超過100萬美金身家的富翁,在找真銀以外,他們還在想甚麼呢?至於蓋茨,他亦已宣布即將退出微軟,全身經營其慈善基金。即使未計巴菲特的貢獻,現時這個基金的財力已差不多富可敵國。現時在非洲愛滋病及瘧疾仍然是很嚴重的問題,大家可能亦為這些國家作出不少捐獻,但有多少是真正可以用在這些病患者的身上呢? 在2008年後,蓋茨將全力從事慈善事業,不少貧苦弱勢社群便有機會獲得更多幫助。雖然大家也明白最重要的還是教育,但沒有溫飽的話,還可談些甚麼呢?

他成立這個基金是否為了避稅或是賺取更優厚的回報,大家亦無需多作猜測。我們不如放長雙眼,看看日後他與太太放在慈善的那顆熱心是否可以像早前時代週刊訪問他在印度時的情況。作為世界首富,必定有不少人以他作為榜樣。如果他的慈善計劃成功,更多的資金將會用於慈善方面,這絕對是好事。但這些錢一定不可以落在一些貪官污吏手上,不然亦只是徒然,這可能亦是蓋茨需要花更多時間在基金的原因。

新加坡想學香港揾靠山

新加坡與香港之間的競爭沒完沒了,但新加坡有一個幾難克服的先天弱點,就是不像香港般有中國作為背靠,而附近的國家對新加坡又好似唔多友善。

近年印度興起,新加坡以地理上同文化上靠近印度,原本這是一個相當好的靠山,但印度人本身英文好,似乎唔使靠新加坡嚟開拓財路。咁新加坡點都要搵多個勞動力便宜,市場又夠大的國家做靠山至得。近期新加坡終於搵到新靠山,就係其鄰居、有成億人口的印尼。印尼自金融風暴及98年排華暴亂後,發現努力搵銀至係硬道理,之後政府開始好勤力拼經濟,大量出口印傭搵快錢,又搵外資投資設廠。依家唔少藥廠、名牌時裝生產基地都搬去印尼。印尼人每個月搵幾百蚊港紙已好開心,點似依家深圳每個月賺一千人民幣的民工都可能要瞓街。不過印尼係一個唔多講英文的國家,又唔係好識搞經濟特區之類政策,以致潛力未能盡情發揮。在呢個時候,新加坡的優勢就來了,因為新加坡在中國搞過蘇州工業園,佢哋依家將蘇州工業園一套搬到去廖內群島,在民丹島、峇丹島和吉里汶島搞經濟特區。而且印尼政府準備搞多七個經濟特區,真係新加坡全民出動都未必足夠。如果印尼工業起飛,新加坡港務集團(Port Authority of Singapore)真係做生意做到手軟。

千祈咪睇小印尼,印傭近排在港猛咁買二手notebook,搞到二手筆記簿電腦個價異常堅挺。數碼通(315)在銅鑼灣四間分店,有些員工懂說印尼話,可專門服務印傭。銅鑼灣租金唔平,唔係印傭咁有消費能力,數碼通點捨得咁投資?不過,香港好似有十幾萬印尼華人同埋佢哋的後代,遲吓若然印尼改國籍法,分分鐘做番印尼人,唔知佢哋會唔會回鄉投資,為香港經濟注入新動力?

(6月27日刊於《am730》)

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