The cabinet of incoming chief executive Carrie Lam was revealed on Wednesday, with Hong Kong’s top three government officials remaining in their positions.

Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung, Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen and Financial Secretary Paul Chan will be joined by three other incumbent bureau chiefs remaining in their roles.

Carrie Lam
Carrie Lam. Photo: GovHK.

Of the 21 officials announced Wednesday morning, only one was recruited from outside government – Democratic Party co-founder and former lawmaker Law Chi-kwong, who resigned from the pro-democracy party on Tuesday evening. He will serve as secretary for labour and welfare.

“The Democratic Party thanks Law for his selfless contribution to the party and the democracy movement,” said the group in a statement. “We still hope he can demonstrate his abilities and serve Hong Kong in his new position.”

Only one woman – Sophia Chan – will serve in the new cabinet. A former University of Hong Kong nursing professor, she will be promoted as secretary for food and health from her current position as under-secretary.

Familiar faces

Home affairs chief Lau Kong-wah, environmental chief Wong Kam-sing and innovation chief Nicholas Yang will remain in their positions after the change of administration on July 1. The current head of the chief executive’s office, Edward Yau Tang-wah, will be head of commerce and economic development.

Aside from Sophia Chan, three other incumbent undersecretaries will be promoted into the cabinet: the Security Bureau’s John Lee Ka-chiu, the Education Bureau’s Kevin Yeung Yun-hung, and the Financial Services and Treasury Bureau’s James Lau.

Sophia Chan
Sophia Chan at an event promoting organ donation. File Photo: GovHK.

Civil servants Joshua Law Chi-kong, Patrick Nip Tak-kuen, Michael Wong and Frank Chan Fan will respectively serve as the chiefs of the Civil Service Bureau, Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau, Development Bureau, and Transport and Housing Bureau.

The heads of the Immigration Department, the Independent Commission Against Corruption, the Audit Commission and the Police Force will remain in their positions. Deputy Customs Commissioner Hermes Tang Yi-hoi will be promoted as commissioner.

Financial Services and Treasury Bureau’s James Lau – the oldest of the principal officials at 67 years of age. Deputy customs commissioner Hermes Tang Yi-hoi will be promoted as commissioner. Aged 52, he is the youngest of the incoming team of principal officials.

Officials remaining in their positions include:
  • Chief Secretary – Matthew Cheung Kin-chung.
  • Financial Secretary – Paul Chan Mo-po.
  • Secretary for Justice – Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung.
  • Secretary for the Environment – Wong Kam-sing.
  • Secretary for Home Affairs – Lau Kong-wah.
  • Secretary for Innovation and Technology – Nicholas Yang Wei-hsiung.
  • ICAC Commissioner – Simon Peh Yun-lu.
  • Commissioner of Police – Stephen Lo Wai-chung.
  • Director of Audit – David Sun Tak-kei.
  • Director of Immigration – Erick Tsang Kwok-wai.
New appointments include:
  • Secretary for Labour & Welfare – Dr Law Chi-kwong.
  • Secretary for Education – Kevin Yeung Yun-hung.
  • Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs – Patrick Nip Tak-kuen.
  • Secretary for Security – John Lee Ka-chiu.
  • Secretary for Development – Michael Wong Wai-lun.
  • Secretary for Transport & Housing – Frank Chan Fan.
  • Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury – James Lau.
  • Secretary for Food and Health – Professor Sophia Chan Siu-chee.
  • Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development – Edward Yau Tang-wah.
  • Secretary for the Civil Service – Joshua Law Chi-kong.
  • Commissioner of Customs and Excise – Hermes Tang Yi-hoi.

Elson Tong is a graduate of international relations and former investigations consultant. He has also written for Stand News.