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Chinese Parliamentary Sessions 2013

March 2013 sees the annual meeting of the two legislative and consultative bodies of China, where major policies are decided and key government officials appointed. The National People's Congress (NPC) is held in the Great Hall of the People in China's capital, Beijing, and with 2,987 members, is the largest parliament in the world. It gathers alongside the People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) whose members represent various groups of society.

NewsHong Kong
POLITICS

Message from Xi to Hong Kong: think of national interest

President also expressed hope the prosperity and stability of the city will be safeguarded

PUBLISHED : Monday, 18 March, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 18 March, 2013, 9:47am

President Xi Jinping, in his first open speech as head of state, appealed to Hongkongers to uphold the interests of the nation and the city.

"Compatriots in the Hong Kong and Macau special administrative regions should put emphasis on the country, Hong Kong and Macau's overall interest," Xi told delegates at the closing session of the National People's Congress in Beijing yesterday.

"[This is] so as to safeguard and foster the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macau," he said.

Last March, about two weeks before Hong Kong's chief executive election, then vice-president Xi had also told delegates to the legislature that the city should put the country's overall interest above their personal concerns.

Xi's speech yesterday came shortly before new Premier Li Keqiang urged Hong Kong to make good and full use of the central government's policy initiatives that benefit the city.

Local NPC deputies and a political analyst said Li's comment referred to some of the 36 economic, financial, tourism, social and Guangdong-Hong Kong co-operation measures announced during his 2011 visit to the city, as well as to the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (Cepa) initiatives that had not been fully utilised.

Asked if he had plans to introduce any other measures to help Hong Kong after his "gifts" two years ago, Li said: "One has to take the goods in the gift box out one by one, in order to make good and full use of them."

"The two sides [the mainland and Hong Kong] have to work together," the new premier said, adding that Beijing would do its best to advance the initiatives that were good for Hongkongers and would keep the city prosperous over the long term.

Hailing the Hong Kong community as open, inclusive and vibrant, Li said there was room for deeper bilateral co-operation.

Political commentator Johnny Lau Yui-siu said it was evident that some of the Cepa and preferential measures in place were not being fully utilised.

Li's remarks did not rule out the possibility of more preferential socio-economic initiatives being rolled out when necessary, he said.

Xi's speech, meanwhile, was to remind Hongkongers to uphold the nation's interests, Lau said.

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This article is now closed to comments

cwcwilson
It's not about HKers think they are superior or if China a great nation or not. The problem is a one system within a different system. Hong Kong as a semi-democratic city is under China, a social-communistic country. These two systems have different approach and people's mindset in both system is obviously different. While HKers and most people in the world believe that democracy is the right and best way to go, its way to become truly democratic is being blocked by a China's central government-- a different political system. In the speech, Xi reminds "Hongkongers to uphold the nation's interests". From that, we can tell that there is distant expectations between HKers and the central government. Note that I said "between HKers and central government" not HK gov and central gov. In democratic perspective, the government should represent and act to the greatest benefit of its people. In other words, people's interests is above all. In contrast, what Xi asks HKers to do is the opposite. He wants HKers to surrender interests of their own and adopt the greater interests of the country. It is basically an incompatibility. It is like running a mac application inside a windows, it will simply crash.
LunarRepublic
"SAR departments failed in every field"
If they're failing in every field, Hong Kong would be in huge turmoil right now. And obviously it's not.
LunarRepublic
Ha. No.
I'll agree that China is a huge nation with a knack for organization, but safest and greatest?
If I can recall, people couldn't see the sky over Beijing for a whole week and I don't they can still see it even now. Families are still being forcibly kicked out of their homes by corrupt officials, people are still being arrested for speaking their minds about the government, and overall human rights is considerably inferior to many other countries. I'll be frank, people are't eager to imitate a country that controls the media like puppeteers and runs tanks over its own citizens.
Oh sure, China's a hub for manufacturing, but a lot of the factories are just making products for foreign companies. Really how many big-name internationally known Chinese corporations are there? Sure there's Lenovo, but even then it's headquartered in the United States and incorporated in Hong Kong. I'm sure there are some and I know China's made major contributions to science and tech, but they're not exactly earning ire from other countries due to their greatness.
captam
It is in Hong Kong that citizens are turfed out of their homes for redevelopment without choice or fair compensation.
There are numerous of examples in the mainland during the past ten years where a single Mainland resident has held up a major infrastructure or housing development project until he/she is paid a compensation sum which satisfies the occupant or owner. The compensation packages and rights of property owners on the mainland have been improving year by year while Hong Kong has been moving in the opposite direction. Hong Kong developers can now now kick people out of their homes of a certain age once they have acquired 80% of the property. They call this the "rule of law"
likingming
Despite the intangible core values of democracy, freedom and rule of law, HK achieves the followings
- High Suicide Rates (no better than that of China, charcoal burning vs self-immolation)
- Lower Birth Rate (lower than that of China, self abortion vs forced abortion)
- Higher Rate of Mental Disorder (witnessed in public places like libraries, markets)
- Fewer SMILING FACES on streets (if any, that must be the mainlander's. Or a HK psycho!)
Dirty statistics but anybody who has experiences of living in both places could tell you.
男兒志 在四方 弱女身 困香江
wwong888
captam wants to feel the love of a benevolent dictators.... hope you like getting reamed in the a$$. move to china you muppet.

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