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AsiaGlobal Voices

Trending Opinions From Across the Region

AsiaGlobal Voices is a curated feed of summaries of opinion articles, columns and editorials published in local languages in media from across Asia.

The publication of AsiaGlobal Voices summaries does not indicate any endorsement by the Asia Global Institute or AsiaGlobal Online of the opinions expressed in them.

Anti-Terror Law – Or Anti-Filipino Law?
Monday, June 15, 2020
Anti-Terror Law – Or Anti-Filipino Law?

Leila De Lima, lawyer, human-rights activist and Senator, in Rappler (June 13, 2020)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: Philippine News Agency)

Anti-Terror Law – Or Anti-Filipino Law?

Is the anti-terror bill protecting us from terror and fear? Or normalizing them? If this bill passes, no part of any person’s life is secure anymore, as it gives the government the power to track down or follow anyone, and to tap, listen, intercept or record any message, conversation, discussion, spoken or written words, including computer and network surveillance, and other communications of persons.

The government says that there are safeguards in place, including judicial authorization. Yet the law allows so much discretion on the executive, including in the determination of what constitutes terrorist attacks and who are terrorists and terrorist organizations, that it is easy to imagine a scenario where even the courts might not be willing, able, or prepared to stand as safeguards against abuse.

So, what is the danger? First, this is a criminal statute. It puts people in danger of losing their liberty, possibly for the rest of their life. People have the constitutional right to know what acts are being punished before they are penalized from doing them. Second, given the vague definitions, it could be weaponized as a tool of harassment against those that government wants to silence.

History has taught us that repressive regimes can and will abuse any power they can get, even to the point of using it against persons who are merely exercising their legitimate rights and freedoms.

Of course, we need to improve our response to terrorism. I applaud those who wish to amend the bill to protect the people. But the government cannot protect the people by perpetually and absolutely placing their lives under threat. Otherwise, the government will be doing a better job than the terrorists.


Taiwan will not be a Suitable Refuge for Hong Kong Youth
Monday, June 15, 2020
Taiwan will not be a Suitable Refuge for Hong Kong Youth

Zhang Yazhong, principal of the Sun Wen School in Taiwan, in Global Times (June 12, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: airbus777)

Taiwan will not be a Suitable Refuge for Hong Kong Youth

Taiwan’s Executive Yuan has drafted a humanitarian rescue plan which offers a route for Hong Kong people to seek political asylum in Taiwan. There are emotional, political, and legal factors behind why Taiwan is open to immigrants from Hong Kong. Emotionally, they are all part of the Chinese nation. Politically, there was a shared anti-Communist stance. Legally, Hong Kong is considered part of China.

Hong Kong pro-independence elements began to learn from Taiwan independence forces after the Sunflower Movement in 2014. Taiwan independence forces sent personnel to Hong Kong to train them in protesting and demonstrating. Both sides became teammates in promoting the anti-China narrative.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen's support in the polls before 2019 was very low. Yet the more chaotic the situation was Hong Kong, the easier it was for Tsai to peddle her ideology of "terrorism, resistance and hatred” and ultimately win re-election. As Washington and Beijing have moved towards full-scale confrontation, Hong Kong's chaos has added firewood to Tsai’s pro-American, anti-China policies.

Beijing reckons that the violent separatists who want to "liberate” Hong Kong are the ones who will leave. What they seek is not freedom and democracy, but "independence", so the Hong Kong SAR government should be relieved to see these troublemakers gone.

The views of those that leave will complement those of the Taiwan pro-independence forces and strengthen the ruling Democratic Progressive Party’s anti-Beijing stance. While most Taiwan people may be initially sympathetic, an influx of Hong Kong youths could lead to increased interference in Taiwan’s domestic affairs. The radical political activists will eventually realize that Taiwan is not their ideal home and will wish to move on. After all, the United States and other Western countries are where they really want to go.


Revise Lee Kuan Yew's Old "Big Fish" Analogy
Friday, June 12, 2020
Revise Lee Kuan Yew's Old "Big Fish" Analogy

Han Shengbao, journalist from China now living in Singapore, in Lianhe Zaobao (June 11, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory

Revise Lee Kuan Yew's Old "Big Fish" Analogy

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has stated that the United States and China will embark on a road of confrontation that could last for decades, making the long-anticipated “Asian century” more and more precarious. Southeast Asian countries including Singapore are right to be wary of being caught at the intersection of the interests of the major powers.

“In a world where the big fish eat small fish and the small fish eat shrimps, Singapore must become a poisonous shrimp,” Lee Kuan Yew used to say. In Singapore's early days, to survive alongside neighboring countries (small fish) and major world powers (big fish), it strived to build up its capabilities as a “poisonous shrimp”.

After more than 50 years, the "big fish" analogy has been quietly involving. First, this analogy is a product of Cold-War thinking based upon a complex political and security environment. Today, Singapore has abandoned this thinking and holds a cooperative rather than confrontational approach to its relations with neighboring countries.

Second, a new "big fish" – China – has emerged. Singapore has had frequent military dialogues and exchanges with China. Meanwhile, the United State has become increasingly unfriendly, with President Trump turning the United States into a "shark". Prime Minister Lee concluded that the strategic foundation of “American peace” has fundamentally shifted. We are therefore at a critical and historic moment when Singapore must re-examine the "big fish" analogy.

Prime Minister Lee has stated that Asian countries do not want to be forced to choose between the United States and China. His position could not be clearer: Singapore cannot afford to alienate China. Prime Minister Lee also wishes that the US understands that if other countries deepen relations with China, it does not necessarily mean that they are fighting against the United States.


The Epidemic is Creating New Waste
Friday, June 12, 2020
The Epidemic is Creating New Waste

Dato’ Ray Tan, environmentalist, in Oriental Daily News (June 11, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Roksana Helscher/Pixabay)

The Epidemic is Creating New Waste

Malaysians have needed to learn a lot under this “new normal”. In addition to wearing masks and maintaining social distance, increased hand washing, and disinfection have also become part of daily routines. Little consideration, however, has been given to how we should deal with used masks and efficiently reduce disposable plastic waste.

According to the Director of the Solid Waste and Public Cleansing Management Corporation (SWCorp), consumers have changed their consumption patterns through greater online shopping for daily necessities and ordering food delivery. As a result, the amount of plastic waste has increased.

During the early days of the lockdown period, only packed take-outs were provided by food operators. The use of disposable plastic lunch boxes and plastic bags, therefore, increased significantly. This was largely unavoidable. Only one out of 10 workers prepares their own lunch. After nearly three months of different stages of lockdown, many people have become accustomed to minimizing dining out. Malaysians should make an effort to make their own lunches to reduce the use of disposable tableware and plastic.

It is undeniable that masks have now become one our daily necessities. The safe disposal of used masks has become a serious issue. While there are no reliable data to show the current global mask usage, Chinese media have reported that the daily output of masks in China on February 29 alone was 116 million. More concerning is that not only are the masks made from plastic but used masks may have also been contaminated with viruses and bacteria.

We must all work harder to think seriously about what can be done to deal with this new type of waste. 


Islamophobia in Europe – Muslims Should Mobilize
Thursday, June 11, 2020
Islamophobia in Europe – Muslims Should Mobilize

Yuri Octavian Thamrin, Indonesian Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the European Union, in Republika (June 10, 2020)

Summary by Keith Loveard (Photo credit: Pete Souza/The White House, 2015)

Islamophobia in Europe – Muslims Should Mobilize

Despite Europe’s high level of development and culture, Muslims there have suffered many horrific experiences. Georgetown University Islamic Studies professor John Esposito sees Islamophobia in the West as a phenomenon related to terrorism such as the 9/11 attacks in the US and the ones in Paris in 2015 and Brussels in 2016. But Islamophobia cannot be accepted with any excuse, not least because it endangers Europe’s own interests.

As a “social cancer”, Islamophobia is destructive to the democratic values, pluralism and tolerance of the people of Europe. It needs to be uniformly opposed. But it looks to be strengthening in the EU, especially since right-wing populist political parties continue to advance. Their electoral support has grown from 10.6 percent in 1980 to 18.4 percent in 2017. They continue to play the politics of identity and stir up fear.

The number of Muslims in Europe is sufficient to play a role in the mainstream, and they should no longer remain on the periphery. They must become professionals and entrepreneurs who deserve to be respected by the public. They need to organize to defend their rights and create a good relationship with the media, parliaments, governments and other institutions. 


Dissenting Against the Anti-Terrorism Bill
Thursday, June 11, 2020
Dissenting Against the Anti-Terrorism Bill

Jovito V Cariño, Chair of the Department of Philosophy, University of Santo Tomas, in Rappler (June 11, 2020)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: NDFP-ST)

Dissenting Against the Anti-Terrorism Bill

There are different kinds of critiques of the controversial Anti-Terrorism Bill. The ones I call “popular” emerge organically, riding the wave of public uproar against the bill with a little push from influencers and social media. The rejection of the bill at this level is almost knee-jerk but thanks to its popular base, it spreads like wildfire and generates public interest.

The next kind of critique, which I call “legal”, calls for amendment of the infirm provisions of the bill but does not reject it outright. For those who espouse this critique, the problems found in the bill are purely legal and are best left to legal minds to resolve.

The third kind of critique, the one I label “academic”, opposes the bill but does not call into question the political culture that gave shaped it. Proponents of this critique are ambivalent about whether or not to reject the political and ideological foundations from which the bill has derived its notorious chilling effect.

The fourth kind of critique I call “political”. Advocates read the texts as mere flexing of power by those who hold the reins of government, which both local and global observers have described as authoritarian.

Some would say that fear of the bill is hypothetical or imaginary. There is nothing hypothetical or imaginary with what we have seen the last four years: the culture of impunity, selective justice, summary killings, perversion of sovereignty, incompetence, and vindictive politics. They are all on record, documented by reports of media organizations and various watchdogs. These are the tales of the change that was promised but not delivered. They make the Anti-Terrorism Bill such a scary specter. I do hope I am wrong but until proven otherwise, I prefer to dissent.


What Should Black Lives Matter Mean to Non-Americans?
Wednesday, June 10, 2020
What Should Black Lives Matter Mean to Non-Americans?

Surekha A Yadav, columnist, in Malay Mail (June 7, 2020)

Summary by Alejandro Reyes (Photo credit: Anthony Quintano)

What Should Black Lives Matter Mean to Non-Americans?

The world watched as protests erupted following the killing of George Floyd, a black man, by a white policeman. As Americans took to the streets, people everywhere took to social media to show solidarity. Many Singaporean friends did too, some going so far as to donate funds to help protesters in the US pay legal costs.

The extent that the #blacklivesmatter cause found resonance in Singapore was heartening. It is good when people recognize injustice in other parts of the world, and I applaud their generosity.

I hope it is part of a larger commitment to fighting injustice everywhere because it is notable that so many of us seem far less concerned about injustice at home or in our local region. This is not a competition; this is about solidarity.

For example, the obvious matter of foreign workers. They are in this country legally performing vital services, but their living conditions, wages and general treatment are markedly inferior to what the local population enjoys.

As non-citizens, it can be argued they should not expect equal pay. But even then, these workers have a Covid-19 infection rate that seems to be over 100 times higher than that for the general population.

Yet support for foreign workers in Singapore has been less visible than support for #blacklivesmatter. Part of this is just the cultural power of the USA. What happens in America seems to be happening to us and so hopefully the lessons learned there will resonate and come to be applied here.

This would be the best outcome. The worst case would be that many of us are simply “virtue signaling” with little thought given to the underlying lessons and situations at home. I hope the outpouring of activism we are seeing will bring positive change at home too.


"Air Bridges" will Lead to Fragmented International Travel
Monday, June 8, 2020
"Air Bridges" will Lead to Fragmented International Travel

Chen Gang, Senior Research Fellow and Assistant Director of the East Asian Institute, National University of Singapore, in Lianhe Zaobao (June 6, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Vasyatka1)

"Air Bridges" will Lead to Fragmented International Travel

International travel has suffered a significant blow as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. With some countries successfully controlling the virus, we are witnessing the resumption of the domestic economy and international travel. Some governments have started to propose “travel bubbles” or “air bridges” with a limited number of neighboring countries in the hope of resuming the movement of people and revitalizing tourism. While this may appear to be a good solution for restarting international travel, it may also lead to fragmentation and mark a new stage of globalization.

When a travel bubble is established between two countries, healthy residents in these two countries can cross each other’s borders without quarantine measures. For example, New Zealand and Australia recently issued a joint statement on such a plan, while Hong Kong and Macau are exploring similar arrangements. Three Baltic countries (Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia) are considering the establishment of a similar travel-bubble plan.

Travel bubbles are exclusively group together countries with a similar national condition and strong epidemic control. They are regional, rather than global, travel arrangements. The relationship between travel bubbles and global free travel is a bit like the relationships between bilateral, regional and global free trade agreements under the framework of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Not all geographically adjacent countries and regions will establish travel-bubbles arrangements. In addition to meeting the above conditions, there must also be sufficient trust among the countries involved. While there will be many incentives for East Asian countries such as Singapore to introduce travel bubbles if the pandemic persists, overcoming political barriers and strategic differences and conflicts will become a key challenge.


Populism and Racism Co-Exist, but will Elites Give up Vested Interests?
Monday, June 8, 2020
Populism and Racism Co-Exist, but will Elites Give up Vested Interests?

Wong Tai Chee, retired professor at Southern University College, in Oriental Daily (June 6, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: MyLifeStory)

Populism and Racism Co-Exist, but will Elites Give up Vested Interests?

The Trump administration of the United States and the Conservative government of the UK are prime examples of right-wing populism. Right-wing populists often use inflammatory remarks to win the support of the middle and lower classes while creating international and domestic enemies as a means of consolidating power.

In Malaysia, right-wing populism has emerged in another form, blending Malay racism with Islamic elements. It has become a tool to promote cohesion of the country, even if it is rife with internal conflicts of interest. Theoretically, this not only protects the vested interests of Malay elites, but also protects the political and economic interests of the middle and lower classes of Malay people. This form of racism with elements of populism has actually succeeded in giving Malay middle and lower classes confidence in the government. Populism and racism are very different, yet in Malaysia they exist together. We call this phenomenon populist racism.

In Malaysia, the Malay racist upper class has wielded power through the ruling class to control and manipulate the civilian population as a whole. The United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) has successfully used poverty alleviation alongside democracy as tools to build legitimacy and a certain degree of justice, thereby giving the majority of the Malay middle and lower classes a sense of security. Malay racism advocates the love of one’s own ethnic and religious attributes as the basis for safeguarding the interests of the ethnic group. To this end, it must exclude political leaders of other races, no matter their contributions to the country.

For the common interests of the people of all ethnic groups, the only hope lies with the intellectuals with a conscience among the Malay elite. But can we expect those with a conscience to be willing to give up their vested interests?


Why has Trump Threatened a Flight Ban?
Monday, June 8, 2020
Why has Trump Threatened a Flight Ban?

Zhang Zhonglin, commentator on the civil aviation industry, in Guancha (June 4, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory

Why has Trump Threatened a Flight Ban?

Since May, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has rejected applications from three major US airlines to resume flight routes to China. In response, the US government announced that it would ban Chinese flights. If this ban is introduced, it would not only threaten China-US routes but make relations between Beijing and Washington even more tense.

Following the outbreak of Covid-19 in China at the end of January, major US airlines decided to ground flights between China and the United States in light of falling demand and to protect the health of employees. Shortly after, the US government made a politically motivated decision to ban the entry of all Chinese nationals.

As the pandemic spread, the situations in China and the United States reversed and the US aviation industry was seriously affected. By April, the three major US airlines expressed their desire to resume their routes to China. The uncontrolled epidemic in the US, however, meant this was impossible.

China has sufficient grounds not to approve the US airlines’ requests. The growth rate of Covid-19 cases in the US is at an alarming rate of more than 20,000 (currently over 40,000) a day. 

This proposed ban should be seen in the context of the political struggle with the US. If implemented, it will undoubtedly have a very serious impact on the return of Chinese citizens in the United States and charter flights organized by the embassy will also likely be affected. It is clear, however, that the US government really wants to allow US airlines to resume China-US routes. If so, the correct approach, rather than banning Chinese airlines, is to make a concession. US airlines should cooperate with the CAAC’s quarantine requirements on China-US flights and approve China's plans for charter flights.


The Purpose of the "Stir-Fry" Strategy?
Monday, June 8, 2020
The Purpose of the "Stir-Fry" Strategy?

Nelson Chow Wing-sun, Emeritus Professor in the Department of Social Work and Social Administration of The University of Hong Kong, in Ming Pao (June 5, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: renfeng tang)

The Purpose of the "Stir-Fry" Strategy?

As the Covid-19 epidemic has been gradually brought under control, protests have reappeared under the “stir-fry” strategy. The public were not aware what this strategy really entailed until the National People's Congress passed Hong Kong’s National Security Law. In layman's terms, the stir-fry strategy simply means "If we burn, you burn with us". Those who promote this strategy seek to create chaos in society as a means to achieve their overall aim or simply to force those in power to make concessions.

No matter how much its opponents attack the government, the government will simply continue to fight violence with violence. Chief Executive Carrie Lam has made it clear that the government will not set up an independent investigation committee into alleged police brutality. While Hong Kong people are tired of chaos, they recognize that this strategy will not adequately aid their cause.

If the strategy aims to support the attempt by the pan-democrats to win the majority of seats in Legislative Council elections and then force the government into implementing universal suffrage, this would essentially involve forcing your opposition into a corner. Undoubtedly, universal suffrage is what Hong Kong citizens desire, but would they be happy with the pan-democrats being able to veto any legislation? This would certainly put the Hong Kong government and the Chinese central government in a precarious and unsettling position.

Pursuing this strategy would involve directly opposing the national security law and would clearly carry anti-central government undertones. While the strategy may be supported by many Hong Kong people – “Let's jump off the cliff together" is a powerful statement – is this really in line with the wellbeing of Hong Kong people?


The World is Awaking to the “Chinese Dream”
Friday, June 5, 2020
The World is Awaking to the “Chinese Dream”

Lee Min-yung, poet, in Liberty Times (June 3, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory

The World is Awaking to the “Chinese Dream”

In 1979, the United States formally established diplomatic relations with China and redefined its relationship with Taiwan under the Taiwan Relations Act. On June 4, 1989, tanks ploughed through protestors on Tiananmen Square, exposing the Communist Party of China's totalitarian and authoritarian nature. Yet the US still desired to support China's economic development in the hope that it would promote the development of democratic universal values. Neither the US nor the international community imposed sanctions on China.

China continued to attract foreign investment and efficiently transformed itself into the factory of the world. It used the idea of free capitalism to develop its own economy while promoting the concept of totalitarian socialism or “socialism with Chinese characteristics”. Meanwhile, Taiwan was cut off from the international community.

Through Hong Kong's struggles, the Wuhan virus and the aggressive stance of Beijing, the dreamers within the great powers have finally woken up. China’s forces have replaced the old Soviet Union and the essence of the empire has reappeared.

The Communist revolution originally aimed to promote social fairness and justice. Instead, China has become a paradise for private political ambitions. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has become rich but not for the benefit of its citizens or the world. The Cultural Revolution during the Mao Zedong era humiliated and killed many party members and many of the today’s CCP leadership are simply repeating history. Xi Jinping is mimicking Mao Zedong's authoritarian and totalitarian style, just like Hitler in Nazi Germany.

The Hong Kong version of the National Security Law is just a wake-up call. While the ravaging shadow of the Wuhan virus still affects many countries, the Chinese people can accurately understand the nature of the Communist regime. The rest of the world, however, is only just awakening to this reality.


Regulations Out of Touch with Reality
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Regulations Out of Touch with Reality

Hurr Hee-young, Professor, School of Business, Korea Aerospace University, in The Korea Economic Daily (May 27, 2020)

Summary by Soomi Hong (Photo credit: PxHere)

Regulations Out of Touch with Reality

There are two department stores standing side by side in Mok-dong ward in Seoul. The first sells products from small and medium enterprises (SMEs). When a bigger Hyundai Department Store (run by chaebol) opened next door, the revenue of the former unexpectedly tripled as the area saw increase in foot traffic. The two co-exist more in symbiosis rather than as competitors.

The newly elected Korean government promised favorable policies towards SMEs. The proposals include further regulating operating hours of big shopping complexes by increasing mandatory closure from the current twice a month to four times. However, whether such market regulations would really result in boosting the traditional markets and protecting local businesses is questionable.

First, the proposed regulations fail to understand that with the increasing dominance of online commerce, offline revenue has been in decline, chaebol-led or not. Second, restricting the operation of distribution chains will only further decrease foot traffic in the offline economy. According to the Korea Employers Federation, online shopping revenue increase by as much as 37 percent on Sundays with mandatory closures of big retail chains. Third, increasing market regulation decreases consumer benefit as demonstrated by Starfield chain of shopping malls which had a project blocked to protect local business but which over 70 percent of residents favored.

The regulation on operating hours of big retail corporations back in 2012 was aimed at protecting the SMEs and local businesses. Despite this, consumers only turned more to online shopping instead of increasing local spending. The biggest losers of the regulations were the farmers whose sales declined due to the mandatory curbs on the operations of their distributors.

The decisive force in the market is consumers’ choice, not more regulations. The key for survival in the marketplace is to understand better what consumers want and then adapt.


Britain’s role in the “East Berlinization” of Hong Kong
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Britain’s role in the “East Berlinization” of Hong Kong

Kenneth Chan Ka-lok, Associate Professor in the Department of Politics and International Relations and Director of the Comparative Governance and Public Policy Research Centre at Hong Kong Baptist University, in Ming Pao (June 1, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: Jules Cahn)

Britain’s role in the “East Berlinization” of Hong Kong

In 1996, then-British prime minister John Major stated that “if in the future there were any suggestion of a breach of the [Sino-British] Joint Declaration, we would mobilize the international community and pursue every legal or other avenue open to us.” To examine how seriously the United Kingdom has remained committed to Hong Kong, we must look at its actions rather than words.

Over the years, the China policy of British governments has focused on economic and trade relations. When they were prime minister, David Cameron and Theresa May happily talked about how London and Beijing would push bilateral relations into a "golden age" through collaboration in the high-speed rail, energy technology or higher education sectors and Belt and Road Initiative projects. Prime Minister Boris Johnson also takes a friendly attitude toward China and places economic interests first. While the US and EU are taking a stronger stance on China, the UK has maintained cooperation and dialogue. But these interactions have not helped improve the governance of Hong Kong.

In the post-Brexit era, the UK is unable to exert influence in EU decision-making. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, however, the UK has applied pressure on China by raising the issue of Hong Kong. More can be done.

The British Parliament should give Hong Kong a greater voice in formulating policies and countermeasures to the situation, while MPs should demand accountability from the UK government. Finally, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office should conduct a more in-depth and detailed assessment of Hong Kong’s autonomy and human-rights situation.

The UK should not unconditionally accept Hong Kong as a regular partner after its "East Berlinization" by China takes place. Instead, the UK should provide ongoing support and impose sanctions on anyone who undermines Hong Kong’s autonomy and human rights.


Providing a Protective Umbrella for the People of Hong Kong
Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Providing a Protective Umbrella for the People of Hong Kong

Wang Yao, columnist, in People’s Daily (May 28, 2020)

Summary by Alan Yang Gregory (Photo credit: The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region)

Providing a Protective Umbrella for the People of Hong Kong

On May 28, the National People's Congress (NPC) passed a vote to approve a National Security Law for Hong Kong. This will help to ensure the stability of "one country, two systems" and provide a “protective umbrella” for Hong Kong people to live and work in peace.

This law is a necessary step to plug the loopholes in Hong Kong's national security laws. It fully embodies the central government's strong will and determination to maintain national security and reflects the central government's overall interest in Hong Kong and its population. As such, the maintenance of national security is crucial and should not be delayed.

The legislation is both reasonable and legal, with national security legislation the purview of the central authority. As such, the decision has been made through comprehensive analysis, evaluation and judgment of various factors after fully communicating with relevant parties. Furthermore, the institutional arrangement conforms to the constitutional provisions and constitutional principles and is consistent with the relevant provisions of Hong Kong’s Basic Law.

Social stability is the prerequisite for addressing all problems including economic issues. If the situation in Hong Kong were to go unchecked, the well-being of Hong Kong’s population, the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong society and the strong rule of law and business environment in Hong Kong would all be lost.

Hong Kong has achieved remarkable results in its fight against Covid-19. All sectors of the society are eagerly expecting that Hong Kong can reunite and start again. Looking to the future, under the protection of national security legislation, Hong Kong can strengthen the system of the special administrative region and write a new chapter of economic prosperity and development for its citizens. Ultimately, Hong Kong will continue to make unique and important contributions to the great revival of the Chinese nation.