Carrie Lam has proved that, however sweetly she talks and smiles, she is unable to escape the cosy civil service cocoon, incapable of backing significant change and overprotective of her fellow bureaucrats. Photo: Sam Tsang

Blame Hong Kong’s failures of government on Carrie Lam and Co, not our political system

Philip Bowring says multiple failings in the city – from the water contamination scandal to long-running issues in the tax system – are largely the result of ill-thought-out policies and inept implementation

Topic |   Carrie Lam

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Carrie Lam has proved that, however sweetly she talks and smiles, she is unable to escape the cosy civil service cocoon, incapable of backing significant change and overprotective of her fellow bureaucrats. Photo: Sam Tsang
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Philip Bowring

Philip Bowring

Philip Bowring has been based in Asia for 39 years writing on regional financial and political issues. He has been a columnist for the South China Morning Post since the mid-1990s and for the International Herald Tribune from 1992 to 2011. He also contributes regularly to the Wall Street Journal, www.asiasentinel.com, a website of which he is a founder, and elsewhere. Prior to 1992 he was with the weekly Far Eastern Economic Review, latterly as editor.