Shares in Hong Kong have slumped to the lowest level since the global financial crisis, after a major speech by the city’s leader on Wednesday.

The benchmark Hang Seng index fell by more than 3% to its lowest level since May 2009, before regaining some ground.

Investors are also concerned about the threat of a global economic slowdown as central banks around the world raise interest rates to tackle rising prices.

One financial expert told the BBC that the “panic selling is ridiculous”.

In his first policy address yesterday, Hong Kong’s chief executive John Lee announced measures to boost security and plans to attract more overseas talent to the territory.

However, he did not elaborate on economic targets for the city, which has lost ground to rival Asian financial centres like Singapore.

Hong Kong’s economy is currently in a technical recession, after seeing two three-month periods in a row of contraction this year.

Until recently the city had some of the world’s toughest coronavirus rules as it followed China’s zero Covid policies.

“The Hang Seng has hit a 13-year low and nothing is really helping the fragile sentiment,” Dickie Wong, executive director of Kingston Securities said.

“There’s also a sense that tax rebates are not enough to draw foreigners back to Hong Kong,” he added.