Sunday, July 25, 2021

international

HKSAR govt slams US attempts to damage citys reputation


HONG KONG – The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR)s government has strongly condemned attempts by the US administration to damage Hong Kong’s reputation as a global business hub by slandering the National Security Law for Hong Kong.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the HKSAR government said the US administration issued the so-called “advisory” to US businesses and individuals operating in Hong Kong based on “totally ridiculous and unfounded fear-mongering about the situation in Hong Kong.” The US' latest move only serves to prove yet again its hypocrisy and double standards, driven by ideological hegemony.

"The main victims of this latest fallout will sadly be those US businesses and US citizens who have taken Hong Kong as their home," the spokesman said.

Contrary to the US administration’s allegation, developments since the implementation of the National Security Law are characterized by safety, security and stability.

“Under the National Security Law, Hong Kong's status as an international financial center has not wavered at all,” the spokesman said.

In the past 12 months, the IPO funds raised in Hong Kong exceeded HK$500 billion, representing an increase of more than 50 percent compared to the previous 12 months. 

Hong Kong dollar market also recorded net capital inflows in 2020. In the four months from the implementation of the National Security Law in July to October last year, the amount of funds flowing into the Hong Kong dollar system exceeded HK$300 billion. The total deposits in the Hong Kong banking system have increased by more than five percent over last year, while the net asset value of funds management in Hong Kong at the end of last year also increased by some 20 percent over the end of 2019.

“Business confidence has been restored when their operations are no longer under the threat of terrorist acts, street violence and personal intimidation,” the spokesman noted.

The spokesman said referring to the central government’s enactment of the National Security Law for Hong Kong as an “oppressive action” is “a fallacy that could hardly stand up to challenge.”

“We had reason to believe that foreign politicians who continue to query and smear the National Security Law despite the clear evidence were motivated by a broader geopolitical agenda to suppress China,” the spokesman said.

As a free and open economy as well as an international city, Hong Kong will continue to welcome overseas businesses, including US businesses, to set up offices in Hong Kong and to use Hong Kong as their regional headquarters or regional offices, the spokesman said.

The latest moves by the US clearly breached the principle of non-intervention under international law, the spokesman said, urging the US to stop its blatant interference in the internal affairs of the People's Republic of China and the HKSAR.

The HKSAR government also strongly condemns the so-called sanctions imposed on the seven deputy directors of the Central People's Government Liaison Office in Hong Kong, the spokesman added.

The Hong Kong government's Chief Secretary John Lee Ka-chiu, in a separate statement, said it is the HKSAR's constitutional responsibility to safeguard national security. 

"The unfounded allegations and the publicity stunt of the United States government against the business environment of Hong Kong are clear attempts to create trouble out of nothing and intimidate investors," he said.

The city's Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Edward Yau Tang-wah, meanwhile, said so-called US warnings are "biased, self-serving, of double standard and not fact-based."

He said that Hong Kong — with its prime location, unrivaled connections to China, East Asia, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, and stability restored — is the best place in Asia for business and for investment.

Hong Kong's Department of Justice said Hong Kong's National Security Law is in line with the international practice of safeguarding national security. 

"It is appalling to see that a number of western countries have launched groundless attacks on the NSL with a deliberate attempt to mislead the international community."

'Despicable' US plot

The Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China in the HKSAR expressed a similar sentiment on Friday.

Calling the latest moves by the US an “arbitrary and unreasonable bullying act,” a spokesperson for the office said the US’ true intention is to undermine Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability, endanger China’s national security, and contain China’s development.

“The US plot is despicable and contemptible, and it will never succeed,” the spokesperson said.

Citing media reports, the spokesperson said the US business community in Hong Kong had recently opposed the US government to issue a “business warning” for the city, calling it a “crazy and counterproductive move.”

The spokesperson said the so-called sanctions are nothing but a piece of waste paper – they can neither undermine the steady and sustained implementation of “one country, two systems, nor stop the irreversible trend of the Chinese nation’s rejuvenation.

“In response to the US arbitrary move, the Chinese people will certainly fight back,” the spokesperson warned.

Published : July 18, 2021

By : China Daily / ANN