What enabled Singapore to supersede Hong Kong? The answer is quite simple
To start with, the strong government earned the citizens’ trust. The Singapore government managed to find a lodgement at the global stage, and now has a clear view of the country’s state, its weak and strong points as well as a clear understanding of the direction of Singapore’s development. Quite contrary to the Hong Kong government, which is extremely cautious in decision making; to such an extent that the relevant decisions are sometimes made too late. No surprise, because Hong Kong always reverts to China, since gaining sovereignty in 1997.
The next argument concerns government officers, who are known to have generous salaries. Using this approach, Singapore attracts talents and widely introduces innovative policies.
What is also important, according to Global Corruption Perception Index, Singapore is much less corrupt than Hong Kong.
What explains Singapore’s success is its pragmatic result-oriented approach: meritocracy that is far from utopian universal equality or self-regulating capitalism.
As contrasted with Singapore, Hong Kong has a population full of pronounced anti-communistic ideas, which don’t work well for the country’s benefit.