An HKFP analysis of what wasn’t in the CE’s Policy Address. Prime example (apart from obvious stuff like representative government) is the barely mentioned Lantau Tomorrow Mega-Vision Reclamation Extravaganza.
In terms of housing supply, this plan is superfluous if officials decide to utilize border areas more efficiently. A glance at the map also shows why Beijing would be less keen on it: the new urban developments would be adjacent and linked to other, especially core, parts of Hong Kong, far from opportunities for physical or symbolic merger or integration with Mainland districts. From a ‘geo-spacial’ view, filling in the sea between Lantau and Hong Kong Island does the opposite of integration – creating what the geo-politics crowd might call a ‘centripetal force’. Paul Chan suddenly declares a need for a ‘northern growth engine’.
Apart from eight inches of rain on Friday, and five on Saturday – a quick look at the weekend…
Security Secretary PK Tang sends cops out to prevent the celebration of October 10, 1911 on the assumption that the aging KMT loyalists would be expressing support for Taiwan independence. He then rises to the bait and calls for Hongkongers to ‘be prepared’ for the CIA’s healthily publicized new China-focused office. The guy is trying too hard.
John Burns on the fate of the Pillar of Shame and what it means for HKU. Kevin Carrico on the same subject, plus a suggested new slogan to replace Hong Kong’s ‘Asia’s World City’: ‘Pyongyang with better lighting’. He also seems to have identified the Mayer Brown Asia personnel who drafted the anonymous lawyer’s letter to the HK Alliance.
Singapore announces travel-lane arrangements for vaccinated people with the UK, US, France, South Korea and others. A summary of Singapore PM Lee Hsien Loong’s speech on moving on from Covid. Can you imagine Carrie Lam being this rational or forthright? Baby God essentially says that, given universal vaccination and booster vaccination shots, the emotional and other strains of Covid restrictions on the whole community outweigh the possible deaths of a small number of elderly.
A brief mention of one reason Taiwan is getting more – and more positive – coverage internationally: more overseas reporters have moved there – because Beijing kicked them out of China. And a good quick thread on how Taiwan became democratized. Note (or consider possible) parallels with Hong Kong’s colonial experience. One interesting angle: the sudden fall of Marcos in the Philippines spurred regimes in Taiwan and South Korea to liberalize their political systems.