Hong Kong’s Leung Leads Election With 670 Votes, Cable TV Says

Hong Kong chief executive candidate and former convener of the Hong Kong Executive Council Leung Chun-ying (C) smiles and gives a thumbs up sign while standing with his supporters during a press conference after the Hong Kong Chief Executive Election Debate in Hong Kong on March 16, 2012. Photograph: Aaron Tam/AFP/Getty Images Close

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Hong Kong chief executive candidate and former convener of the Hong Kong Executive Council Leung Chun-ying (C) smiles and gives a thumbs up sign while standing with his supporters during a press conference after the Hong Kong Chief Executive Election Debate in Hong Kong on March 16, 2012. Photograph: Aaron Tam/AFP/Getty Images

Leung Chun-ying, a former government adviser, garnered 670 votes in the city’s chief executive election today, according to Cable Television.

He leads Tang, a former chief secretary, who got 271, according to the report. Democratic Party lawmaker Albert Ho trails with about 75 votes. A 1,193-member election committee comprising of businessmen, lawmakers and academics voted today.

The next chief executive will be the last to be chosen by a narrow group in the former British colony, with China having pledged to introduce universal suffrage in 2017. The winner will inherit a city with the biggest wealth gap in Asia, spawned by an influx of money from mainland China that has helped make Hong Kong the world’s most expensive place to buy a home.

“Whoever becomes the next chief executive will have a challenging task of addressing the wealth gap,” said William Fung, executive deputy chairman of retailer Li & Fung Ltd. (494) “The next leader will need to address the housing problem, the affordability issues as well as bringing sustainable economic growth to Hong Kong.”

Since the handover in 1997, median monthly household income has remained unchanged at HK$20,000 ($2,575), while the economy grew 62 percent. London-based Savills Plc (SVS) said the price of an apartment in Hong Kong is almost two times higher than in London, which placed second on the property broker’s list of most expensive places to buy a home.

Lawmaker Lee Cheuk yan (C) and other protesters tear fake ballots while protesting near the main polling station for the Hong Kong chief executive election on March 25, 2012. Photograph: Aaron Tam/AFP/Getty Images Close

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Lawmaker Lee Cheuk yan (C) and other protesters tear fake ballots while protesting near the main polling station for the Hong Kong chief executive election on March 25, 2012. Photograph: Aaron Tam/AFP/Getty Images

To contact the reporters on this story: Kelvin Wong in Hong Kong at kwong40@bloomberg.net; Stephanie Tong in Hong Kong at stong17@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Hwee Ann Tan at hatan@bloomberg.net; Peter Hirschberg at phirschberg@bloomberg.net

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