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Wednesday, July 22, 2015, 09:18

Beijing’s policy on HKSAR remains consistent: Zhang

By Joseph Li
Beijing’s policy on HKSAR remains consistent: Zhang

In a photo taken on March 3, 2015, Chairman of the Standing Committee of China's National People's Congress (NPC), Zhang Dejiang attends the opening session of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing . ( AFP PHOTO / WANG ZHAO)

The top official in the central government in charge of Hong Kong affairs emphasized the consistency of Beijing’s policies toward the SAR when meeting a delegation of Hong Kong businessmen on Tuesday.

Zhang Dejiang, chairman of the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, said the implementation of “One Country, Two Systems” over the past 18 years had been very successful. It had also won the support of most people in Hong Kong as well as the international community.

Zhang also reaffirmed the central government’s commitment to Hong Kong. He said the SAR, with the advantages of having the support of the country and the “One Country, Two Systems” principle, clearly has a good future. He hoped Hong Kong will make the most of these opportunities to meet new challenges.

The State leader made these comments while meeting a visiting Chinese General Chamber of Commerce delegation, led by its president Charles Yeung Chun-kam.

During the meeting, Zhang said important changes were occurring internationally, while the development of China was reaching a new stage. He praised the strategies and goals advocated by President Xi Jinping. These had outlined a clear direction for the nation’s future development, Zhang stressed.

He also asked the chamber to support Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying and his government.

At the meeting, Zhang discussed “five areas of policy consistency”. These included maintaining “One Country, Two Systems”, Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong, and a high degree of autonomy.

He also stressed consistency in adherence to the Basic Law, progressive and orderly democratic development, maintenance of the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong, as well as safeguarding the sovereignty, national security and development interests of the country.

Tam Yiu-chung, a lawmaker and former chairman of Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong, said Zhang was reiterating that the central government’s Hong Kong policy remained unchanged.

Constitutional development must conform to the Basic Law and progress in an orderly, gradual manner, he explained.

Tam also said the central government would not put aside constitutional development in Hong Kong despite last month’s veto of the reform package.

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