Editorials

All the latest comment, focus, and opinion behind the big news stories in Hong Kong, China & around the world
  1. China and Australia are very different nations. Normally, we put our differences aside because of the overwhelming economic benefits, but now we are at a stalemate. China’s investment in Australia has dropped 60 per cent, faster than any other nation. Recent reports of cyberattacks and political interference in Australia have exacerbated anti-China sentiment, feelings that were already soured by Covid-19, barley tariffs and the politics of Hong Kong. In China, public opinion towards Australia…
  2. As we move deeper into July, the effects of the national security law are already making themselves felt – not only within Hong Kong, but far beyond its borders, thousands of miles away in the territory’s former colonial ruler.Britain, which opposes the law, worries that the enactment of the law establishes a precedent for China to thwart British interests anywhere in the world.This is because, despite China’s furious assertions to the contrary, Britain sees its national interest as being…
  3. Time magazine’s cover on November 13, 2017 stated in both Chinese and English, “China Won.” Ian Bremmer wrote in the cover story that, “As recently as five years ago, there was consensus that China would one day need fundamental political reform for the state to maintain its legitimacy and that China could not sustain its state capitalist system. Today China’s political and economic system is better equipped and perhaps even more sustainable than the American model.”In its 70th Summit in…
  4. Beijing’s imposition of a draconian national security law, which prompted the British government to introduce a new path to citizenship for some 3 million Hong Kong residents who either hold a British National (Overseas) passport or are eligible for one, could boost demand for residential property in London.Camilla Dell senses an opportunity. Dell, the managing partner of estate agency Black Brick, noted that, “over the past 18 months or so, we’ve already seen growing interest in London as…
  5. The conclusion that lessons of the deadly severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) outbreak in 2003 left Hong Kong better prepared for the coronavirus pandemic appears vindicated – so far. Only seven Covid-19-related deaths, equivalent to one for every 1 million people, attests to that. But Sars did not prepare the city for rampant global contagion, with spiralling caseloads and worrying “second waves” of infection just when it had seemed safe to lower public health defences.News of more local…
  6. Some people would not feel much sympathy for parents who can afford private or international schools but complain about the cost anyway. But that may not do justice to the substance of some of the grievances or serve the best interests of the city. The issue came to notice a few months ago when the ombudsman took an interest and published a report critical of the Education Bureau for allowing private schools to charge some parents millions of dollars in miscellaneous fees, sometimes in exchange…
  7. Few things in life are certain. That’s why leaders need to judge policies and outcomes in terms of high or low probability. Taiwan politicians, whether of the Kuomintang or the Democratic Progressive Party, operate with the same basic realisation of hardcore realities and therefore the same instinct for survival.Ideology is less relevant when both sides have heavy guns pointing at each other, something that tends to concentrate minds. This is a deadly game that Taipei and Beijing understand…
  8. Are financial markets underestimating the chances of a last-minute deal on Brexit? Time is fast running out to strike a mutually acceptable trade agreement before Britain quits the European Union at the end of the year, and nobody could be blamed for thinking it’s all going to end in tears.Emotions are running high and negotiators from both sides look so far apart that the prospect of Britain crashing out of Europe on bad terms looks very likely. But could the impossible still happen?After all,…
  9. Former chief justice Andrew Li Kwok-nang recently voiced his opinions on the enactment of the Hong Kong national security law by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress. He argued, inter alia, that the chief executive’s power to select the judges who would deal with national security cases would be detrimental to the city’s judicial independence. To address an accusation that involves a breach of the Hong Kong Basic Law, we have to respond in line with that law.Li establishes…
  10. Last October, the annual Chinese University survey of attitudes towards migration reported a shocking 42.3 per cent of Hong Kong respondents wanted to emigrate – mostly to Canada, Australia or Taiwan. That was up from around 33 per cent the year before. Run this survey today, and who would dare guess what the number would be. Add the news that the British government, after decades of procrastination and provoked by Beijing’s decision to impose a national security law on Hong Kong, is preparing…