Double-standards policy so unfair to foreign nationals

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2007, 12:00am

P. K. Lee raised a couple of interesting and probably unintended points in his letter, 'Dual nationals by default' (September 27).

The term 'patriot' has been tagged to most pro-China figures and Hong Kong's leading businessmen, as well as senior civil servants. I suppose by calling these people patriots we are supposed to believe that they show full allegiance to China.

I wonder how many of them turn up at the office each morning in a Chinese-made car? Not a chance, it's almost certainly German. How many of them wear a Chinese-made wristwatch (definitely Swiss)? How about their suit (Italian)? Shoes (British)? Yep, these folks are true patriots, as long as they don't have to put up with mainland-made products.

On the subject of dual nationality and Hong Kong identity cards, about 10 years ago I asked the then chief executive Tung Chee-hwa, why foreign nationals holding permanent HKID cards couldn't have some sort of home return permit.

Mr Tung responded that it was a valid point and that the matter would be 'looked into'. I guess that 10 years for the government to 'look into' something is about average, but this matter has become something of an insult to those of us who have chosen Hong Kong as our own, raised our children here and faithfully paid our taxes.

A couple of years ago it was announced that Singaporeans and Brunei passport holders would both enjoy visa-free access to the mainland. Brunei? What makes them so special? Come to that, why Singaporeans?

We actually live in greater China, but we're treated as visiting tourists, even though many of us have business dealings on the mainland and have to travel there quite often.

Some of my friends and associates go through a 50-page passport in less than two years because of all the Chinese stamps.

At the same time these dual nationality patriots slip back and forth across the border with the same ease as the Singaporeans and Brunei passport holders.

There's something very wrong here.

Richard Castka, Tai Po