WHAT do the Anglican Bishop of Hongkong, the Right Reverend Peter Kwong Kong-kit, the Singaporean property developer Mr Robert Ng Chee Sing, botany professor Dr Zee Sze-yung and Mr Xu Ximin, publisher of the China-watching magazine Mirror have in common? Not much, frankly - except their membership of the exclusive 43-strong club of Hongkong Affairs Advisers. They were hand-picked by China to keep the New China News Agency and the Hongkong and Macau Affairs Office of the State Council in touch with localthinking and help them influence opinion here. This week after a year in office, they are about to become a little less exclusive. But as Beijing prepares to swear in the second batch of 50 advisers, their role is still little understood in Hongkong. Membership remains by invitation only. And there is no typical profile. Self-starters are welcome. But fat-cats and elderly gentlemen looking for public recognition for a lifetime of good works on the mainland may also be considered. Self-publicists and self-effacers are equally acceptable. Almost anyonecan fit the bill, provided they are over 40, are sympathetic to China's policies towards Hongkong and thoroughly out of sympathy with those of the Governor, Mr Chris Patten. Property developer and motorcycle enthusiast, Mr David Chu Yu-lin, who says he is unusual in spending 90 per cent of his time on his work as an adviser, lists three desiderata. ''You must feel Chinese, you must have some accomplishment in your own fieldand you must have more than the average degree of influence.'' So what do we make of the not very Chinese former Chairman of the Housing Authority, Sir David Akers-Jones, who will join the group travelling to Beijing this week for the ceremonial induction of the second batch? Mr Chu is unabashed. ''There are many Hongkong people, who after years of Western influence, don't feel they're Chinese and don't have a good feeling of being of Chinese race. For example Christine Loh is probably less Chinese than SirDavid.'' The most active advisers are those who have been talking to China for years. Window publisher Mr Lo Tak-shing CBE, Miss Liu Yiu-chu and newly elected Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Vice-Chairmen, Mr Henry Fok Ying-tung, and DrAnn Tse-kai did not need the appointment to put suggestions to China or to convey China's message in Hongkong. They had already carved themselves a niche in pro-China politics, some with seats on the National People's Congress or the CPPCC and all with theear of the top Beijing leadership. The title of adviser is no more than a formal recognition of their role. Mr Chu considers his articles for pro-China newspapers as much part of the job as advising on the make-up and function of the ''second stove'', which China is setting up to prepare for the running of post-1997 Hongkong, and suggesting names for the second batch of advisers. Some of Mr Chu's suggestions are unsolicited. But even he admits his ideas are not always accepted in Beijing, despite his long years of personal friendship with Chinese officials who have now risen to positions of influence. Shui On Group chairman Mr Vincent Lo Hong-sui says not much of his time is spent specifically acting as an adviser. However, if his work as chairman of the Business and Professionals Federation - much of it expressly intended to foster Hongkong-China trade and good relations - is taken into account, then he is very active indeed. Others say they wait to be contacted for advice on their specific areas of expertise. ''Can you imagine if all 43 started giving advice at the same time? It would be pretty confusing,'' said one man who flew to Beijing for the induction of the first batch last spring. China also wants its advisers to be a conduit for its views in Hongkong. Many play that role anyway, since the broad thrust of China's opinions coincide with their own. Mr T. S. Lo and Miss Liu, for instance, clearly take their propaganda roles seriously - to the detriment of their own reputations in Hongkong. But not everyone admits to bearing messages. Some, like Mr Cheng Kai-nam, Secretary of the leftist Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hongkong (DAB), say they are not a Beijing mouthpiece, and claim they give their personal and political parties' positions precedence. ''I told them my role was one-way communication only. If they want to talk to the people of Hongkong, they should do it through other channels or do it themselves. They should stand up and talk directly to the Hongkong media like Chris Patten does,'' said Mr Cheng. The appointment of three other DAB members - and a number of politicians from other pro-China groupings - to the second batch of advisers will further blur the borders between personal and party positions. What advisers actually tell the Chinese and whether they talk to the NCNA or the Hongkong and Macau Affairs Office depends on their individual agendas. But the majority are only too ready to give political views. Clearly the ''second stove'' is topical.Mr T. S. Lo and his allies openly campaign for it to become a takeover committee, and tell Beijing to place no hope in talks with the British and abandon convergence. DAB members advise China to say the opposite and keep its membership as broadly based as possible. Mr Vincent Lo tells both Britain and China to allow tempers to cool before they take the next damaging step in the constitutional reform row. But freedom of speech and opinion go only so far. Despite pleas for greater flexibility from a number of advisers, China has appointed no liberals or pro-Patten members. Association for Democracy and People's Livelihood legislator, Mr Frederick Fung Kin-kee, is understood to have been invited but declined. But Beijing appears determined to keep United Democrats and Meeting Point members out of the charmed circle. There is no real cross-section of Hongkong opinion and China is only hearing the views of its supporters. The best that can be said is that opinions do range from the politically neutral and the moderately pro-Beijing to the extremely pro-Beijing and anti-British. Mr Chu admits this is the wrong way to go about things and says he constantly advises the Hongkong and Macau Affairs Office and the NCNA that opinion needs to be more broadly based, especially in the ''second stove''. But the Chinese are no different from the British in that respect. ''How come Mr Patten's appointments are all pro-Patten? How come all those people with OBEs, and all those JPs are pro-government people?'' said Mr Chu. He maintains he has never received any British honours because of his pro-China views. Nonetheless one adviser, Mr Tung Chee-hwa, sits on Exco, and six out of 18 members of Mr Patten's Business Council are now, or are about to become, advisers. Even if he does not heed their counsel, Mr Patten at least understands the need to be seen to let the opposition have its say.