• Sat
  • Oct 25, 2014
  • Updated: 1:45am
Xi Jinping
NewsHong Kong

Xi Jinping tells Hong Kong to stick to Basic Law on reform

City bound by mini-constitution and NPC view, president tells chief executive at Apec summit

PUBLISHED : Monday, 07 October, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 07 October, 2013, 4:33pm


  • Yes : 83%
  • No: 17%
7 Oct 2013
  • Yes
  • No
Total number of votes recorded: 213

President Xi Jinping took a firm line yesterday on political reform in Hong Kong, telling Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying the city must strictly follow the Basic Law and decisions of the NPC's Standing Committee.

After a closed-door meeting in Bali, where both men are attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit, Leung said: "President Xi gave a clear view on political reform.

"All issues related to political reform must be in accordance with the stipulations of the Basic Law and the decisions of the NPC Standing Committee. In addition, as Hong Kong is a society that upholds the rule of law, the SAR government and the whole of society should act in accordance with the law."

Veteran analyst Johnny Lau Yui-siu said Xi's remarks indicated Beijing was standing firm on reform and would not make concessions easily.

In a separate meeting, Xi told a Taiwanese envoy that the two sides should resolve their political disagreements and that Beijing was willing to hold talks with Taiwan on an equal basis.

Leung said he had reported on a range of issues affecting Hong Kong, but he did not say clearly if he had mentioned the Occupy Central movement or the idea for the public nomination of chief executive candidates.

Article 45 of the Basic Law mandates the selection of the chief executive "by universal suffrage upon nomination by a broadly representative nominating committee in accordance with democratic procedures".

The standing committee said in 2007 that the formation of the nominating committee "could be modelled on that of the election committee". Leung was elected by a 1,193-strong election committee after three candidates met its nomination threshold.

Beijing has promised universal suffrage for Hong Kong by 2017. Activists plan to occupy Central next year if proposals fall short of international standards.

Last month Zhang Xiaoming , director of Beijing's liaison office in Hong Kong, rejected the idea of public nominations, saying it violated the Basic Law.

Leung also mentioned the Manila hostage killings in which eight Hongkongers were shot dead on a hijacked bus. Survivors and relatives want a formal apology from the Philippine government and compensation.

"On the spot, President Xi instructed relevant officials of the nation to continue following up the matter with the Philippine government," said Leung.

Nine staff working for Hong Kong broadcasters had their Apec media passes revoked after reporters were called "impolite" for firing questions at Philippine President Benigno Aquino.

Analyst Lau said Xi's pledge on the Manila tragedy was a gesture. "Xi just wants to pacify Hongkongers and show Leung has done something in order to improve his low popularity rating." But lawmaker James To Kun-sun, who assisted the survivors and families, hoped Xi's action would finally bring progress.

Xinhua reported that Xi gave recognition to Leung's work.

Additional reporting by Johnny Tam


Related topics

For unlimited access to:

SCMP.com SCMP Tablet Edition SCMP Mobile Edition 10-year news archive



This article is now closed to comments

Chief Nitwit Leung looks more pleased with himself than any other time since he took office. He looks like he is about to drool and then suck up some more.

Chief of the Not-So-Very-Democratic Dictatorship Xi looks like he is thinking 'How long before I can stop posing with this idiot and get on with things that actually matter?'
CY: "woof woof"
I totally agree to what Mr. president Xi views with the basis of the political reform that “the city must strictly follow the Basic Law and decisions of the NPC's Standing Committee”. But the question is how both of them to be interpreted at all. It seems, for example, there is wide discrepancy in defining the meaning of “ broadly representative nominating committee” between the Beijing’s loyalists and HK academicians. With the former opposition to the latter proposals at a time, the political reform becomes more complicated and is always locked in stalemate, making us so frustrated all the times. I do think our academicians have already considered the requirements of the Basic Law in designing the proposals. Do they interpreter the Basic Law in wrong way? Or we have wrongly interpreted the meaning of universal suffrage at all? Mr. President Xi, can u tell us?
Hey, I guess Basic Law IS just like an inviolable law of nature, and not something man-made that can be changed as circumstances and people dictate. People will get to choose, but only among Beijing's choices. I guess you CAN be a little bit pregnant after all.
I would agree with chuchu59 though, insofar as Basic Law at least keeps HK different from the PRC until 2047. That's better than nothing, I suppose.
HK weakness is being a jack of all trade master of none. :(
Actually I am thankful that there is a Basic Law which safeguards the interests of Hong Kong people for 50 years at least. The way we live are basically unchanged LOL. However, though it may have been well-intentioned the Basic Law was drafted in the early to mid-80s if I remember correctly and things have changed much since. Abiding by the decisions of the NPC Standing Committee is alright because its current but there are clauses in the Basic Law that are not necessarily fit for use in HK now. At the very least Beijing should ensure the Nominating Committee does not screen out candidates that it does not want. Otherwise, its just another rubber stamp.
Do u really believed a so called true democracy will solve the poverty issue? Government just drew the line of $3600 a month as poverty for individual and saying over 1.2m are below that. Can you survive with 3600 a month? The reality is the line should be much higher and both government and political parties, including pan dem, are not willing to see we have much higher poverty in the city to crate embarrassment.
Pan dem legco members are elected by democracy but how often they come out to speak and fight for these poor people? What % of their effort had spent on fighting for the poor? Not just by giving away money but creating a viable path to get out of poverty. Very little.
HK is not dying just yet. It is faltering though but the sole culprit is not democracy or rather the lack of it. I would rate complacency above it.
Hk is dying not because of lack of democracy as w have more than when pre 1997. What killing us is our competitiveness in terms of people, price and innovation.
What's the HK bargaining power? Nothing.




SCMP.com Account