June 10 - 16, 2019

LAW & ORDER

Government responds to public processions on extradition laws

Having regard to the strong and different views in society, the Hong Kong government issued a statement on June 16, saying that it has suspended the legislative amendment exercise on the extradition laws at the Legislative Council and there is no timetable for restarting the process. The Chief Executive admitted deficiencies in the government’s work had led to substantial controversies and disputes in society, causing disappointment and grief among the people. She apologized to the people of Hong Kong for this and pledged to adopt a most sincere and humble attitude to accept criticisms and make improvements in serving the public.

BILATERAL TRADE

Deepening Hong Kong – US ties

Speaking at a luncheon in Washington DC (Jun 12), Hong Kong’s Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau reaffirmed Hong Kong’s commitment to free trade and the multilateral trading system. Amid the emergence of global trade tensions and protectionist sentiments, Mr Yau said Hong Kong, believes that disputes are best dealt with through negotiations and the World Trade Organization rather than unilaterally. Hong Kong has also taken a multi-pronged approach to diversify its economy and expand its market by reinforcing partnerships and forging alliances through Free Trade Agreements.

At a reception hosted by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Washington (Jun 11), Mr Yau highlighted the mutually beneficial and expanding trade and economic relationship between Hong Kong and the US. He said the relationship was defined on the unique status of Hong Kong under the Basic Law and the city’s distinct qualities, which include the rule of law buttressed by an independent judiciary, a commitment to creating a pro-trade environment and the free flow of information, goods and people.

Speaking at the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong’s 50th anniversary reception (Jun 10), he pointed out that the bilateral relationship between Hong Kong and the US has flourished over the past 50 years. Trade between the two economies has grown from roughly US$8 billion to US$70 billion.

During his visit to Washington DC, Mr Yau met with US political leaders, think tank members, academics, and leaders of chambers of commerce and business organizations to keep them abreast of Hong Kong's latest developments, as well as to exchange views on current trade issues and the Hong Kong-US bilateral relationship.

Earlier in New York (Jun 10), Mr Yau met with key personalities of the financial, business, legal and academic sectors at a roundtable breakfast meeting, where he emphasized that Hong Kong’s unique strengths are guaranteed under the Basic Law and the city values its core values including the rule of law as well as open and free markets.

BUSINESS

Hong Kong to contribute to GBA development

Hong Kong will be the fast-beating economic heart of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA), with its wide-ranging strengths and diversified markets, wrote Chief Executive Carrie Lam in The Diplomat magazine. Hong Kong will also leverage its own renowned connectivity, which is underpinned by the extensive network of overseas economic and trade offices, and its sound legal system to contribute to the success of the GBA. With a collective GDP of US$1.6 trillion and combined population of about 71 million, the GBA is both a manufacturing hub and expansive market for quality goods and services.

US visual analytics software firm opens office

US visual analytics software company Tableau opened an office in Hong Kong (Jun 13) to meet the growing analytics needs of local businesses and help customers and partners to tap opportunities arising from the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA). Hong Kong will serve as an important node for the company, which is committed to help businesses harness the value data and capitalize on the opportunities in the GBA.

BASIC LAW

Hong Kong and its Basic Law

The Basic Law (BL) is the constitutional document of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Put into effect on July 1, 1997, it enshrines within a legal document the important concept of “One Country, Two Systems".

Q: Have Hong Kong's capitalist system and way of life been preserved?

A: The Basic Law provides that the capitalist system and way of life shall remain unchanged. Hong Kong maintains a free and open market economy with a free flow of capital, goods, intangible assets, and a freely convertible currency. People's lifestyle remains the same as before. (BL Articles 5; 112; 115)

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