Former Hong Kong chief executive Leung Chun-ying has said that he wants Taiwanese people to come to the city more often to understand how “One Country, Two Systems” works here.

Earlier this week, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that the unification of Taiwan was “inevitable” and that it would most likely occur under a “One Country, Two Systems” model, like that of Hong Kong’s. Xi added that China would not rule out using military force.

Leung Chun-ying
Leung Chun-ying. Photo: HKFP.

Leung, now a vice-chair of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, said “One Country, Two Systems” was a “scientific” model and that its implementation had been successful.

He said the model was “beneficial to Hong Kong’s development in society and economics” and that it was “recognised by the international community including Britain and the US.” He made these comments in a social media post on Thursday.

Leung then talked about Hong Kong’s status as the largest offshore Renminbi centre alongside it being an important international arbitration centre. He also mentioned that the city is an independent customs territory that can has an international status, and can set up overseas trade offices.

“Over the past 31 years, I have been reading a Taiwanese newspaper every day, but in the past few months, after I noticed the change in Taiwan’s situation, I have been reading two Taiwanese newspapers every day. I know that the Taiwanese media do not have much reporting on the actual situation of how ‘One Country, Two Systems’ has been implemented in Hong Kong,” he said.

“I hope Taiwanese people can come to Hong Kong more, to directly understand the implementation of ‘One Country, Two Systems,’ ‘Hong Kong ruling Hong Kong,’ and the high degree of autonomy, and I hope friends in Hong Kong can continue pushing the peaceful development of the cross-strait relationship, so as to achieve peaceful unification of the motherland,” he said.

Tsai Ing-wen
Tsai Ing-wen. Photo: Flickr/presidential office.

Last month, Hong Kong’s Immigration Department rejected the visa application of Freddy Lim, a musician advocating Taiwanese independence, because he did not “possess a special skill, knowledge or experience of value.” Lim is also a Taiwanese legislator.

Several prominent Taiwanese scholars and activists have also been denied entry to Hong Kong over the past two years.

On Thursday, Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council has said the “One Country, Two Systems” model that was implemented in Hong Kong had led to “loss of freedom, rule of law and human rights” in the city.

Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen also said Taiwanese people will not accept “One Country, Two Systems.”

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.