Compared with the 7.6 percent growth recorded in the second quarter, government economist Andrew Au Sik-hung explained that the pace of expansion moderated somewhat on account of the stronger-than-expected growth in the first half of the year and the higher base effect.

For the first three quarters as a whole, real GDP grew by 7 percent over a year earlier. On a seasonally adjusted quarter-to-quarter comparison, real GDP rose slightly by 0.1 percent in the third quarter.

The real GDP growth forecast for 2021 as a whole is revised to 6.4 percent in the current round of review, close to the upper bound of the forecast range of 5.5 to 6.5 percent as announced in mid-August.

Yet, the latest forecast suggests that real GDP for 2021 as a whole will still be about two percent below the level in 2018. The government said it will continue to closely monitor the situation.

Au added that Hong Kong's economic recovery became more entrenched in the third quarter alongside the further revival of global economic activity and stable local epidemic situation.

Provided that the local epidemic remains under control, a solid year-on-year growth in the fourth quarter should be attainable for the Hong Kong economy, he continued.