Wall Street Journal moves Asia HQ from Hong Kong to Singapore, resulting in layoffs

WASHINGTON: The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) will shift its Asia headquarters from Hong Kong to Singapore, it said on Thursday (May 2) in a letter sent to staff and seen by AFP.

The US newspaper said its decision comes after other foreign firms have reconsidered their operations in Chinese financial hub Hong Kong.

WSJ editor-in-chief Emma Tucker said in a letter to staff that the shift would also involve an unspecified number of layoffs.

Announcing changes to the WSJ’s Asia operations, Tucker wrote: “Some of these changes are structural: We are bringing together our business, finance and economics coverage. Some are geographic: We are shifting our center of gravity in the region from Hong Kong to Singapore , as many of the companies we cover have done.”

On the staff changes, she added: “Consequently, some of our colleagues, mostly in Hong Kong, will be leaving us. It is difficult to say goodbye, and I want to thank them for the contributions they have made to the Journal.”

The union for WSJ employees, IAPE, said in a statement that it was “sorry to learn that eight reporters from the Hong Kong and Singapore offices have been laid off from the company.”

Elsewhere in the region, the WSJ also has bureaus in Tokyo, New Delhi, Hong Kong, Beijing, Seoul, Taiwan and Sydney.

Tucker said a new business, finance and economics group would be created with a mandate to “break news and write ambitious and distinctive features, analysis and enterprise.”

She also said the WSJ was looking to appoint an editor to lead the group, with the position based in Singapore, alongside a number of other journalist roles in Singapore and Hong Kong.

Tucker was named the first female editor of the New York-based newspaper in December 2022, starting in the role in February 2023.