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Join Hudson Institute Research Fellow Nate Sibley and guests Carolyn Bartholomew, Ellen Bork, Bill Browder and Mark Clifford for a discussion on Hong Kong’s future as a global financial center.
The dismantling of democracy and basic civil liberties in Hong Kong has escalated significantly since Beijing imposed the draconian National Security Law in June 2020. As hundreds of peaceful pro-democracy activists are rounded up by authorities, the city’s business community also finds itself under pressure to comply with Beijing’s authoritarian agenda. In May 2021, authorities froze the assets of imprisoned entrepreneur and pro-democracy activist Jimmy Lai in the first such action targeting shares in a publicly traded company. In June, Lai’s independent media outlet Apple Daily was forced to shut down after being similarly targeted by authorities. While Carrie Lam, head of Hong Kong’s puppet government, claimed such measures would “reinforce” the city’s reputation as a secure financial center, the lack of due process sent an unmistakable message to other businesspeople. A survey by the American Chamber of Commerce shows that more than 40 percent of its members are now considering leaving Hong Kong, with the National Security Law the most widely-cited factor in their decision. Can Hong Kong continue as a bastion of commercial success in the face of Beijing’s assault on rule of law? Please join us for this important and timely discussion.