• Wed
  • Oct 1, 2014
  • Updated: 8:20am
Lai See
PUBLISHED : Thursday, 17 October, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 17 October, 2013, 3:56am

Hong Kong is one of the world's most heavily policed territories

BIO

Howard Winn has been with the South China Morning Post for two and half years after previous stints as business editor and deputy editor of The Standard, and business editor of Asia Times. His writing has also been published in the Far Eastern Economic Review, the Wall Street Journal, and the International Herald Tribune. He writes the Lai See column which focuses on the lighter side of business.
 

It may come as a surprise to learn that Hong Kong is the fifth most heavily policed territory in the world, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). It has 450.7 police officers per 100,000 of the population. The top ranked country in terms of the number of police is Russia with 564.6 per 100,000, followed by Turkey with 474.8, Italy with 467.2 and Portugal with 454.2. The US has 256 police officers per 100,000. There is perhaps some distortion due to the Marine Police whose work would otherwise by done by a navy or coastguard. To hear some of the grumbling from the police force you would think they were understaffed. But that doesn't seem to be the case when compared internationally. And they still can't be bothered to sort out the illegal car parking mess.

 

Support for women execs

Aspiring women executives in Hong Kong have another opportunity to accelerate their careers by participating in the Ivey Executive MBA Programme.

For the second year running, the Ivey Business School (Ivey Asia) together with the Women's Foundation are linking up to support the Women's Foundation Scholarship for the Ivey Executive MBA Programme.

The aim of the partnership is to support aspiring women executives to accelerate their careers through participating in the scheme. Su-Mei Thompson, chief executive of the Women's Foundation, said: "Initiatives such as this scholarship programme can play a significant role in building a pipeline of women for executive and non-executive roles. This scholarship dovetails with our mission to challenge gender stereotypes and increase the number of women in decision-making and leadership positions."

Applicants initially have until November 29 to apply for the six scholarships. Scholarship winners receive a 30 per cent discount on Ivey tuition fees.

 

Cooking up a storm

The Food and Drug Law Institute's conference in Beijing on China-US Updates in Food and Drugs Law got off to a lame start yesterday. Six US officials weren't able to speak due to the US federal government funding lapse/partial shutdown. This included Christopher Hickey, the China country director, who was supposed to be delivering the opening keynote address for the USFDA. One can only wonder what the mainland Chinese participants made of this situation from what is supposed to be most powerful country in the world.

Lin Yuan, acting director-general at the Department of International Co-operation, was supposed to make the opening remarks from the Chinese side. But he too was unable to take part due to an "unexpected scheduling change". Possibly too busy working on the mainland's latest food scandal.

 

Who's singing now?

The looming US government shutdown has attracted considerable comment. Few are as succinct as the Financial Times columnist John Gapper with his witty tweet: "Fat lady sings. WSJ editorial page tells the Republicans to stop messing about and sign a debt deal." Warren Buffett has also been fuming about the row on CNBC, calling it "idiocy". He said that using the debt ceiling as a budget bargaining chip basically turns it into a "political weapon of mass destruction" pointed at the American people. This followed a cameo performance the previous evening when he surprised those that attended Fortune's Most Powerful Women Summit by joining Glenn Close in a performance of The Glory of Love while playing his ukulele.

 

Cockroaches fly off the shelves

There is a gripping story in the Los Angeles Times about mainland farmers pinning their futures on cockroaches. The insects - a source of revulsion for many - can fetch up to US$20 a pound (US$44 a kilogram) when dried. They are used in Asian cosmetic and medicine industries that value them a cheap source of protein as well as for the cellulose-like substance on their wings. The price of the insects has risen from about US$2 a pound in 2010. There are now thought to be about 100 farms on the mainland. The insects are used in traditional Chinese medicines, and research is apparently under way on the mainland and in South Korea on using them in treatments for baldness, Aids and cancer and as a vitamin supplement.

 

Have you got any stories that Lai See should know about? E-mail them to howard.winn@scmp.com

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23

This article is now closed to comments

Kubrick
These figures are meaningless because the remit of the Hong Kong police is much wider. They carry out functions that elsewhere are handled by the military and other agencies. Howard has hinted at this, but he failed to mention the manpower on the land border and other functions. Nonetheless, it makes a good headline for Howard to display his usual grumpiness towards the police.
johnyuan
But Hong Kong police can't catch the dog poisoner(s). Actually, who were they that could never be caught?
whymak
Cowed by street mobs and wooly headed magistrates, Hong Kong constabulary is now essentially a uniform corps of scattered scarecrows in city streets. That's why we need a lot of them.
You're right. We are a police state with zombie cops. In the US, police use full strength Mace and Taser guns to subdue unruly mobs. When Katrina ravaged New Orleans, National Guards summoned up to keep order were given shoot-to-kill-looters instructions.
Should we conclude HK is now more "democratic" and observant of "human rights" than the US? If so, why do our politicians and street mobs keep using these words if they do know what they mean?
Sure you must have seen young people breaking through barricades and verbally abusing the police. The foul-mouthed teacher would have garnered in New York at least an 18-month jail sentence for disorderly conduct, misdemeanor, resisting arrest and hate language, which is punishable by law in many parts of US. Instead, she is lionized by the press as a freedom fighter.
Frequent demonstrators are now praised by the media as idealistic people and deserve to be cut some slack - non-compliance with HK ordinances - because of their noble goals to democratize the rest of us. Benny Tai, a law professor no less, says rule of law must be subordinated to his personal higher calling - his Christian faith and mission to establish democratic Utopia here and now.
johndoe
I support the Hong Kong Police :)
johnyuan
To the Dislike:
Why dislike my post? It is a fact that the dog poisoner(s) is / are at large. Or you actually know to my question who poisoned those dogs? Or you have a fat finger and click it wrong. Without a reply, your dislike is absurd and it is a void. May you never be a dog in your next life in Hong Kong if the 'mystery' remains unresolved. .
 
 
 
 
 

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