Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam on Saturday met with Chinese Vice Premier Han Zheng, who is in charge of Hong Kong affairs in Beijing.

Lam, who travelled to Beijing for her third annual duty visit, is also expected to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang on Monday to report on the situation in Hong Kong.

Carrie Lam on her way to Beijing. Photo: Apple Daily.

In Hong Kong, Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung told reporters that Lam will give an account of her meeting with Xi to the public. Cheung also said that he was pleased about the preliminary agreement on the trade deal between China and the United States, adding that he expected Hong Kong to benefit from the agreement.

After arriving at her Beijing accommodation, Lam did not respond to questions on what she had planned to discuss with China’s top leaders. Apple Daily reported on Tuesday that Beijing may be considering a cabinet reshuffle for Hong Kong and that the topic may be broached during Lam’s visit.

Lam has repeatedly denied a report from the Financial Times that she would resign in March. Her deputy Cheung said on Saturday that the Hong Kong government was “determined” to meet governance challenges head-on.

Carrie Lam meeting Xi Jinping in November 2018. File photo: GovHK.

RTHK reported that Lam had submitted a written report on Hong Kong’s situation to the top Chinese leaders, and is expected to meet the press in Beijing. The chief executive will return to Hong Kong on Tuesday morning.

More dialogue proposed

Lam on Saturday also said her top officials will host Facebook Live sessions in the next two weeks, with ministers from the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau and the Labour and Welfare Bureau taking the lead.

In October, Lam went live on Facebook to explain her 2019 policy address but was mostly greeted by angry audience members demanding that she respond to the “five demands” of the pro-democracy protest movement.

Carrie Lam hosting a Facebook Live session. Photo: Carrie Lam, via Facebook.

Lam also said she was planning for the next “community dialogue” event, having hosted the first of such events in September. Most of the randomly selected participants of the town hall event criticised Lam’s administration.

“The first community dialogue had an enthusiastic reception,” Lam wrote on Saturday. “But because the event was held in public, if we want to host it again, we need to consider the problem of participants being doxxed as well as issues with the venue.”


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Holmes Chan

Holmes Chan is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. He covers local news with a focus on law, politics, and social movements. He studied law and literature at the University of Hong Kong.