Hong Kong Special Agreement

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While the U.S. decision to withdraw Hong Kong`s trade status is an attempt to punish China for its violation of Hong Kong`s autonomy, Hong Kong will be the main victim of U.S. action. Over the past decade, Hong Kong`s ability to connect the Chinese economy to the Western world without restriction has made it a global business hub. With Hong Kong`s special status currently in force, the United States and Hong Kong share a fruitful trade and commerce relationship, with free trade of the U.S. dollar and the Hong Kong dollar, virtually no tariffs and visa waivers between the United States and Hong Kong. With these advantages, the United States treats Hong Kong separately from China in the management of export controls. The U.S. government has yet to revoke Hong Kong`s special status. In 1997, the British government ceded control of Hong Kong to the Chinese government with the agreement that the Communist Party would govern with the “One Country, Two Systems” policy. According to “One Country, Two Systems,” Hong Kong would be part of the People`s Republic of China and have its defense and foreign policy determined by the Beijing government, but Hong Kong would gain a “high degree of autonomy” in the management of its government, legal system and other areas.

During the 2014 Umbrella Revolution, a campaign against mainland China`s perceived violations against the HKSAR, Chinese officials concluded for the first time that China considered the joint statement to be “untested,” according to a British lawmaker. [51] This conclusion was deemed “clearly erroneous” by a senior Hong Kong lawyer and rejected by the British Foreign Secretary, who said the document was a legally binding agreement to be respected. [26] [52] Rita Fan, then Hong Kong`s sole representative on the Standing Committee of the National People`s Congress in Beijing, argued that Britain`s prudential responsibility had been abandoned and that the joint declaration also did not provide for universal suffrage. [53] If the U.S. government announces the final extent of the policy changes toward Hong Kong, the Chinese government may also retaliate against the U.S. Therefore, the National Security Act and the repeal of Hong Kong`s special status by the United States will impact not only Hong Kong`s U.S. and foreign companies, but also mainland China. The Sino-British joint statement consists of eight paragraphs, three annexes on the basic policy regarding Hong Kong, the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group and country leases, as well as the two memoranda of the two sides. Each party has the same status and “The whole constitutes a formal international agreement that is legally binding in all its parts.

Such an international agreement is the highest form of engagement between two sovereign states. [10] In these statements, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Zone reports directly to the central government of the people of the PRC and enjoys a high degree of autonomy, with the exception of foreign affairs and defense. . . .