Without further moves towards democracy, Hong Kong may become more unstable.

Waves of protests have been rocking Hong Kong as communist-ruled Beijing’s influence grows. Investors and residents are afraid that the city will lose its Western-style freedoms as the 50-year transition period from a British colony back to China, dubbed “one-country, two systems”, continues. 

Grant Strudwick, Vice President of Asia for Pinkerton, recently shared his insights into Beijing’s efforts to build a “Greater Bay area” and the risks that may emerge as they inch closer to 2047. “Beijing’s efforts to build a “Greater Bay area” encompassing Hong Kong and other parts of the manufacturing-heavy Pearl River Delta are helping to integrate the territory more closely with neighbors such as Guangzhou and Shenzhen. That might help revitalize its economy, which expanded at an anemic 0.6% annual rate in the last quarter, battered by slowing demand and trade tensions. He also mentions, “It’s how the social strata and those freedoms are managed that is going to be the focus of future potential protest activity and unrest and uncertainty. It’s still going to be a major global city into the future. It’s a case of understanding the risks and knowing what you’re getting into come that 2047 time frame.”

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Published July 13, 2019

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