It is a welcome development in the contest for the post of chief executive that as the number of contenders grows, some are taking it upon themselves to publicise their beliefs and judgments to the public at large, instead of canvassing exclusively those who may become Selection Committee members. Constraints of time and resources do not allow the candidates to mount a campaign of the kind that usually goes with popular elections, but some of the candidates are getting as near to it as they can, cheered on and helped out by the eager media. Hardly known to the public a short while ago, the candidates have now become household names, and every day people hear more from them and about them, and get to know them better. The knowledge and wisdom of the candidates will no doubt be judged by their performance in front of the media. People want to know what the candidates believe are the priorities of the new government. They want to see how much the candidates are aware of the problems the community will be faced with, and how much thought they have given to ways of tackling these problems. It is unlikely that the candidates will come up with any revolutionary ideas of government. Nor do the public expect them to initiate drastic changes to existing policies. A 'smooth transition' consists in continuation and improvement in most areas of public service, rather than innovation and reform. There is one task of the Special Administrative Region government, however, that is completely new, and for which the chief executive will have no beaten track to follow. The establishment of the SAR marks the beginning of a new relationship between Hong Kong and the Central Government of China. The relationship is regulated by specific provisions in the Basic Law, but it is necessary to develop appropriate mechanisms to ensure these provisions will be fully implemented. For example, the Basic Law provides that departments of the Central Government and local governments in other parts of China must obtain the consent of the SAR government before they can set up offices in Hong Kong. How will the SAR government take its decisions? On what grounds should consent be granted or refused? The Basic Law also provides that the number of persons coming from other parts of China to settle in Hong Kong will be determined by the Central Government after consulting the SAR government. Should the SAR government formulate its own population policy, and how can it ensure the Central Government will listen to its views? Hong Kong has participated in certain international organisations and conferences of which the People's Republic of China is not a member, but Taiwan is a member in the name 'Republic of China'. How will Hong Kong's membership in these organisations be affected after 1997? With which level in the Central Government should the chief executive liaise? What channels should be established for the chief executive to hold regular and timely meetings with competent Chinese authorities to discuss matters concerning the SAR's relations with the Central Government and other local governments? These questions cannot be decided by the chief executive alone. But Hong Kong people will see the answers to these questions as crucial to the successful implementation of the 'one country, two systems' policy, and they will expect to hear what proposals the chief executive hopefuls have in mind.