Caixin Media

03.11.14

Li Ka-shing’s Remedy for ‘Coddled’ Hong Kong

Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing is again in the media spotlight after he mentioned in late February the possibility of publicly listing his retail business A.S. Watson Group, which is part of the Hong Kong-listed conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa."No...

Caixin Media

02.18.14

Lee Hsien Loong on What Singapore Can—and Can’t—Teach China

As one of the Four Asian Tigers, Singapore is known for its strong economy and orderly society. The city-state, with its population of 5.3 million people, is listed by the World Bank as fourth in the world in terms of per capita income. As a...

Two New Reports Slam Hong Kong Media Self-Censorship

Hong Wrong
Hong Kong fell to 61st in the Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index, behind Burkina Faso, Moldova and Haiti.

IKEA Toy Wolf Becomes Unlikely Anti-Government Symbol In Hong Kong

Yuen Chan
Huffington Post
An IKEA toy wolf whose name in Cantonese, Lo Mo Sai, sounds like the offensive phrase "mom’s c***," was thrown at Hong Kong’s chief executive, Leung Chun-ying on Sunday. "Throw Lo Mo Sai" in Cantonese sounds like "f*** your...

Hong Kong’s Gilded Cage Unfolds in ‘Bends’

David Walter
Wall Street Journal
 Flora Lau’s new movie began, as all her film projects do, with the director grabbing a handheld camera and wandering the streets of Hong Kong for inspiration.

Wikipedia China Becomes Front Line for Views on Language and Culture

Grace Tsoi
New York Times
The Chinese-language version of Wikipedia has become more than an online encyclopedia: it is a battlefield for editors from China, Taiwan and Hong Kong in a region charged with political, ideological and cultural differences.&...

Viewpoint

10.15.13

Trust Issues: Hong Kong Resists Beijing’s Advances

Sebastian Veg
When Hong Kong reverted to Chinese sovereignty in 1997, expectations were high—in Beijing and among the pro-mainland forces in Hong Kong—that identification with the Chinese nation would slowly but surely strengthen among the local population,...

Books

07.31.13

Pacific Crossing

Elizabeth Sinn
During the nineteenth century, tens of thousands of Chinese men and women crossed the Pacific to work, trade, and settle in California. Drawn by the gold rush, they brought with them skills and goods and a view of the world that, though still Chinese, was transformed by their long journeys back and forth. They in turn transformed Hong Kong, their main point of embarkation, from a struggling, infant colony into a prosperous, international port and the cultural center of a far-ranging Chinese diaspora.Making use of extensive research in archives around the world, Pacific Crossing charts the rise of Chinese Gold Mountain firms engaged in all kinds of trans-Pacific trade, especially the lucrative export of prepared opium and other luxury goods. Challenging the traditional view that this migration was primarily a “coolie trade,” Elizabeth Sinn uncovers leadership and agency among the many Chinese who made the crossing. In presenting Hong Kong as an “in-between place” of repeated journeys and continuous movement, Sinn also offers a fresh view of the British colony and a new paradigm for migration studies.   —Hong Kong University Press {chop}

Media

06.27.13

Jackie Chan—The Young Master Comes of Age

Jaime Wolf
Once in a while, if you’re lucky, and paying the right kind of attention, events align to give you a clear view of the future. In 1995, I was in Los Angeles staying with a friend who produced independent films and had the trade magazines Variety and...

Let Hong Kong Decide Snowden’s Fate

Global Times
The Hong Kong SAR government might as well be more candid in dealing with this incident, without excessive consideration of Sino-American relations. Things will go much easier if Hong Kong plays a leading role in resolving this incident, rather than...

Conversation

06.18.13

What’s Right or Wrong with This Chinese Stance on Edward Snowden?

Shai Oster & Steve Dickinson
For today’s ChinaFile Conversation we asked contributors to react to the following excerpt from an op-ed published on Monday June 17 in the Global Times about Edward Snowden, the 29-year-old American contract intelligence analyst who last...

Ex-N.S.A. Contractor’s Disclosures May Draw China’s Attention

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
The decision by a former National Security Agency contractor to divulge classified data about the U.S. government’s surveillance of computers in mainland China and Hong Kong has complicated his legal position, but may also make China’s security...

Few Chinese Follow NSA Revelations but Embrace Leaker

Calum MacLeod
USA Today
Although Snowden is believed to be holed up in Hong Kong, the southern city that since 1997 forms part of the People's Republic but retains some autonomy, China's state-run media has offered little coverage to date, and it's also not...

A Hero’s Welcome for Snowden on Chinese Internet

Wall Street Journal
Chinese Internet users – who for years have lived with well-founded paranoia over the possibility that someone the government could be monitoring their activities online — lauded the self-described whistleblower for the risks he has taken in...

Q&A: Edward Snowden and Hong Kong's Asylum Laws

Professor Simon N. M. Young
South China Morning Post
There has been feverish speculation in recent days over the legal framework surrounding surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden and his presence in Hong Kong. Here, Professor Simon N.M. Young, director of the University of Hong Kong's Centre...

Caixin Media

06.03.13

Trading Companies and the Business of Illusion

Last year, the owner of an export-processing company whom we will call Lin Minyao learned of an easy way to make money in Shenzhen, the port city next to Hong Kong.Like his fellow traders, Lin said he could set up two shell companies, one in Hong...

China Export Gains Spur Renewed Skepticism of Figures

Bloomberg
The 14.7% increase, reported by the General Administration of Customs in Beijing today, was led by a 57.2% jump in shipments to Hong Kong that highlighted suspicions of false transactions used to mask capital flows into China.&...

Chinese Artist Crosses a Line

Joyce Lau
New York Times
In Hong Kong, a business city trying to turn itself into a global “art hub” with a steely determination and large amounts of cash, art events now involve so many government and corporate entities that it almost squeezes the fun out of it.

Culture

01.16.13

Hong Kong’s Bard of the Everyday

Ilaria Maria Sala
 I have your words, that you put down on paperbut nothing at hand to return, so I write downpapaya. I cut one open: so many dark points, so many undefined things On Sunday, January 6, when Leung Ping-kwan, author of these lines,...

My First Trip

12.03.12

A China Frontier: Once the Border of Borders

Orville Schell
In 1961, when I first arrived in Hong Kong as an aspiring young China scholar, there was something deeply seductive about the way this small British enclave of capitalism clung like a barnacle to the enormity of China’s socialist revolution. Because...

Amid Protest, Hong Kong Retreats on 'National Education' Plan

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
Faced with tens of thousands of protesters contending that a Beijing-backed plan for “moral and national education” amounted to brainwashing and political indoctrination, Hong Kong’s chief executive backpedaled somewhat on Saturday and revoked a...

Self-censorship in Hong Kong: How Prevalent Is It?

Cam MacMurchy
Zhongnanhai Blog
The Asian American Journalists Association organized a roundtable at the Foreign Correspondents Club tonight on self-censorship in Hong Kong, an issue which is prescient in light of the recent Chief Executive election, national education protests,...

Nonsense Made Sense: The Downside Up World of Stephen Chow

La Frances Hui
Asian American Writers' Workshop
A young woman, Ah Qun, has gone where few right-minded human beings would dare go: a heavily guarded mental institution. She is on a mission to track down a mysterious man she spotted the night before who bravely confronted a spooky ghost. But as...

Taiwanese Mega Bookstore Causes Frenzy in Hong Kong

Chieh-Ting Yeh
As any self-respecting booklover in Taipei knows, you can immerse yourself in the endless variety of glossy printed books at the Eslite Bookstore on Dunhua South Road. 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Moreover, the flagship store near Taipei 101...

Hong Kong After Island Landing: Who You Calling Unpatriotic?

Te-Ping Chen
WSJ: China Real Time Report
We don’t need patriotism lessons, Hong Kongers say—and yesterday’s successful landing on the contested Senkaku Islands proves it. On Thursday, local newspapers across the city carried full-page spreads showing photos of Hong Kong activists...

Chinese Media Praises Landing of Activists on Diaoyu Islands

Jing Gao
Ministry of Tofu
Wednesday afternoon, 14 activists from Hong Kong successfully landed on one of a set of disputed islands, over which Japan, China and Taiwan all claim sovereignty, and planted Chinese flags on the island as a gesture of declaring ownership. Chinese...

Hong Kong $2.8 Billion Arts Hub to Fill Cultural Void

Frederik Balfour
Bloomberg
Lars Nittve will never forget the first time he visited a museum alone. “There was this enormous sculpture of a woman and you walked into her between her legs,” he recalls. “It was like a museum within a museum there. For a 13-year-old boy, that was...

Hong Kong Media Office Attacked

Te-Ping Chen and Fiona Law
WSJ: China Real Time Report
The office of a news publication in Hong Kong was attacked by four masked men Wednesday, sending shockwaves through the city’s traditionally free-wheeling journalism community. Witnesses said that in the early afternoon on Wednesday, four...

Hong Kong Protests Patriotism Classes

Melissa M. Chan
China Digital Times
Amid fears that the mainland is increasing their involvement in Hong Kong politics, the San Francisco Chronicle reports parents, students, and teachers took to the streets in Hong Kong to protest China’s planned curriculum change.

Former SCMP Hacks Appeal to Change Paper's Direction

Asia Sentinel
Twenty-three journalists who formerly worked for the South China Morning Post have written an open letter to the paper’s group executive director, Hui Kuok, expressing their concern that critical coverage of China is being abandoned in order to...

Global Times Editor Under Fire

Anne Henochowicz
China Digital Times
Not a trace of the July 1 Hong Kong protests can be seen on mainland Chinese media, and “sensitive words” surrounding the rallies have been scrubbed from major Web platforms. So Global Times Chief Editor Hu Xijin’s Weibo post addressing, in English...

South China Morning Post Editor Under Fire

David Watkins
Agence France-Presse
The first China-born editor of Hong Kong's flagship English-language paper admits he made a "bad call" in cutting coverage of a mainland dissident's death, but denies he is a stooge for Beijing. The South China Morning Post'...

Culture

12.21.11

Hong Kong's Own Art Fair

Philip Tinari
Late spring is art fair season, and last week's dramatic news that Art Basel, the best art fair in the world, will take ownership of Asia's new star Art HK has caught much of the art world by surprise. Under new ownership, the fair,...

Books

06.30.11

Ghetto at the Center of the World

Gordon Mathews
There is nowhere else in the world quite like Chungking Mansions, a dilapidated seventeen-story commercial and residential structure in the heart of Hong Kong’s tourist district. A remarkably motley group of people call the building home: Pakistani phone stall operators, Chinese guesthouse workers, Nepalese heroin addicts, Indonesian sex workers, and traders and asylum seekers from all over Asia and Africa live and work there—even backpacking tourists rent rooms. In short, it is possibly the most globalized spot on the planet. But as Ghetto at the Center of the World shows us, a trip to Chungking Mansions reveals a far less glamorous side of globalization. A world away from the gleaming headquarters of multinational corporations, Chungking Mansions is emblematic of the way globalization actually works for most of the world’s people. Gordon Mathews’s intimate portrayal of the building’s polyethnic residents lays bare their intricate connections to the international circulation of goods, money, and ideas. We come to understand the day-to-day realities of globalization through the stories of entrepreneurs from Africa carting cell phones in their luggage to sell back home and temporary workers from South Asia struggling to earn money to bring to their families. And we see that this so-called ghetto—which inspires fear in many of Hong Kong’s other residents, despite its low crime rate—is not a place of darkness and desperation but a beacon of hope.

Gordon Mathews’s compendium of riveting stories enthralls and instructs in equal measure, making Ghetto at the Center of the World not just a fascinating tour of a singular place but also a peek into the future of life on our shrinking planet.  —University of Chicago Press

My First Trip

02.19.11

Dawn in China

Perry Link
My father was a radical leftist professor. He led study tours to the Soviet Union in the 1930s and later admired Mao Zedong. That influence, in addition to the passion in the late 1960s and early 1970s within the American student movement against...

Reports

02.01.11

Prospects for Democracy in Hong Kong: The 2012 Election Reforms

Michael F. Martin
Peony Lui
Congressional Research Service
Support for the democratization of Hong Kong has been an element of U.S. foreign policy for over seventeen years. The democratization of Hong Kong is also enshrined in the Basic Law, Hong Kong’s quasi-constitution that was passed by China’s National...

Reports

12.01.08

The Macroeconomic Impact of Healthcare Financing Alternatives: Reform Options for Hong Kong SAR

Dennis Botman and Nathan Porter
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
With much healthcare publicly funded, Hong Kong's rapidly aging population will significantly raise fiscal pressure over coming decades. The authors ask what the implications are of meeting these costs by public funding, or private funding...

Reports

03.01.08

Hong Kong SAR as a Financial Center for Asia: Trends and Implications

Cynthia Leung and Olaf Unteroberdoerster
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
We document Hong Kong SAR's evolving role as an international financial center in the Asia region, the importance of the growing special link with China as well as supply-side advantages, and outline the scope for future financial services...

Reports

07.01.07

Guarding Against Fiscal Risks in Hong Kong SAR

Nathan Porter
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
The Hong Kong SAR's government faces the dual challenges of volatile revenue and medium term spending pressures arising from a rapidly aging population. Age-related spending pressures raise long-run sustainability concerns, while revenue...

Reports

06.29.07

Hong Kong’s Return to Chinese Sovereignty: Ten Years On

Amnesty International
Hong Kong returned to Chinese sovereignty on 1 July 1997 after more than one hundred years as a British colony. This report looks at how certain basic human rights have fared since the handover and assesses how far the HKSAR government has taken the...

The Hong Kong Gesture

Jonathan Mirsky from New York Review of Books
On September 5, in an astonishing victory for liberty in Hong Kong and an equally unexpected defeat for Beijing and its hand-picked chief executive, Tung Chee-hwa, the Hong Kong government withdrew a proposed new law against subversion and treason...

Betrayal

Jonathan Mirsky from New York Review of Books
It is unusual in British political life for a high official to leave his position and immediately reveal in his own words or through an intermediary what in his opinion really happened while he was in office. Furthermore, unless he has been roughly...

Selling Out Hong Kong

Ian Buruma from New York Review of Books
And so it finally came to pass, at midnight, June 30, 1997, in the brand-new Hong Kong convention center, resembling, local people say, a giant cockroach: the red flag of the People’s Republic of China, snapping in the breeze of wind machines, went...

Holding Out in Hong Kong

Ian Buruma from New York Review of Books
Flicking through the April issue of the Hong Kong Tatler, a glossy high life magazine modeled after the London Tatler, I was reminded of a story I once heard about the Rothschild house in Paris. When Victor Rothschild visited the Avenue de Marigny...

Peking, Hong Kong, & the U.S.

Jonathan Mirsky from New York Review of Books
No recent book has blown a bigger hole in the proposition that the US must follow a policy of “positive engagement” with China than The Coming Conflict with China. It is a mark of the wound they inflicted on Peking that the authors, ex-reporters in...

Media

01.21.96

Jackie Chan, American Action Hero?

Jaime Wolf
Whenever Jackie Chan leaves Hong Kong to make a public appearance in Shanghai, Taipei or Tokyo, or in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore or Seoul, hundreds—sometimes thousands—of his fans gather in a frenzy of adoration. Last June, Chan, the martial artist,...

The Battle for Hong Kong

Jonathan Mirsky from New York Review of Books
1.Hong Kong—The first weekend of the Year of the Dog, February 11–13, was not a good one for those of us who live in Hong Kong. The annual fireworks display, sponsored by the Bank of China (in Peking fireworks are banned), was muffled in mist. In...

Blazing Passions

Geoffrey O’Brien from New York Review of Books
In a coincidence of programming in New York City a selection of the commercially most successful Hong Kong movies of the 1980s ran at the same time as a retrospective of work (some of it only marginally released in its country of origin) by the...

The Last Days of Hong Kong

Ian Buruma from New York Review of Books
May 1983: It was exactly seven months after Mrs. Thatcher stumbled and fell on the steps of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing that I arrived in Hong Kong to take up a job. The prime ministerial fall; which preceded a fierce quarrel with Deng...