Hong Kong’s richest person, Li Ka-shing (李嘉誠), has caused concern by selling off some of his assets in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Guangzhou.
On Monday, Hong Kong Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok (黎棟國) suddenly obeyed a summons from Beijing by traveling there with the leaders of the Correctional Services Department, Customs and Excise Department, Fire Services Department, Immigration Department and police to receive instructions. This gives a clear indication of the direction Leung’s administration is headed.
Hong Kong’s rapid downfall has important implications for Taiwan. Due to President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) acceptance of the “one China framework,” Chinese officials no longer feel that there is any need to maintain the “one country, two systems” setup in Hong Kong as an example for Taiwan. Instead, they now feel free to trample on Hong Kong more than they did in the past.
This is leading more Hong Kongers to change their attitude regarding Taiwan and Ma. They would prefer to see Taiwan defend its sovereignty.
Some of Hong Kong’s pan-democrats who supported a “democratic return” of the territory to Chinese sovereignty during the final days of British colonial rule have come to realize how wrong they were. At the same time and for the same reason, groups and parties that favor retaining Hong Kong’s separate identity are quickly rising to prominence.
Paul Lin is a political commentator.
Translated by Julian Clegg