Business deeply concerned over national security lawLocal | 3 Jun 2020 10:21 am
An overwhelming majority of U.S. firms in Hong Kong responding to a survey by the American Chamber of Commerce, said they are concerned about Beijing's move to impose national security legislation on the global financial hub.
The Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor is in Beijing today to share views with Beijing on the national security law. Lan said yesterday theUnited States is viewing the national security law, "through tinted glasses."
The business survey, to which 180 or 15 percent of AmCham members responded on June 1-2, showed 30 percent of respondents were "moderately" concerned and 53.3 percent were "very concerned" about the legislation, which aims to prevent and punish secession, subversion, terrorism and foreign interference in Hong Kong.
The legislation, which could also see Chinese intelligence agencies set up bases in the city, has sent ripples through the legal, diplomatic and business communities amid concerns it could erode rights and freedoms in Hong Kong.
Beijing and local authorities have repeatedly said it would not affect the city's high degree of autonomy, agreed with its former colonial master Britain before it reverted to Chinese
rule in 1997.
About 60 percent of the respondents thought the legislation would harm their business operations, citing concerns about ambiguity in scope and enforcement, erosion of autonomy, talent drain,
Hong Kong's international status, social unrest and the independence of the justice system among others.
Some 30 percent of the respondents were considering moving capital, assets or business operations from Hong Kong.-Reuters/The Standard