Acting Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang (
Tsang met with Liao Hui (
Chen described the meeting as unscheduled. He said Tsang was vacationing in the city of Jiangmen over the weekend when he learned Liao was in nearby Shenzhen, so the two decided to meet.
Tsang told Liao that Hong Kong's government had been operating smoothly since he replaced his former boss, Tung Chee-hwa (
An 800-member committee loyal to Beijing will choose Hong Kong's new leader on July 10 and Tsang is thought to be China's No. 1 choice for the job.
Chen said Tsang and Liao did not discuss Beijing's rumored preference for him. No one has announced their candidacy in the leadership race so far.
China's interest in Tsang has surprised some because he was a career civil servant in the administration when Hong Kong was still a British colony, and he was knighted for his service. Some analysts say Beijing still has doubts about his loyalty.
Tsang, a devout Roman Catholic, also visited the grave of Jesuit missionary St. Francis Xavier on the island of Shangchuan, his spokesman said, highlighting his Western influences.