Taiwan’s victory, Hong Kong’s tragedy

Hong Kong Economic Journal
Date: September 01, 2020
By: Mark O'Neill

The war between China and the United State is intensifying. It has spread from trade and technology to finance, diplomacy and the military. In Washington, people talk of an “October surprise” – a limited conflict in the South China Sea – to help President Trump win re-election.

Neither Taiwan nor Hong Kong has a conflict with the U.S. Two years ago, Hong Kong enjoyed better relations with the U.S. than any city in China, with thousands of American citizens and companies happy to live and work here and the same for Hong Kong people going the other way. Senior officials of the SAR government were warmly received by high-ranking members of the administration in Washington.

Now the world has turned upside down. Those same officials are under U.S. sanctions. American banks and companies here are trapped between two contradictory sets of rules and wonder if they should stay.

This is the tragedy of Hong Kong that should never have happened. In Taiwan, the story is the reverse. It enjoys better trade, diplomatic and military relations with Washington than at any time since 1979. Last month, Health Secretary Alex Azar landed in Taipei, for the highest-level visit in over 40 years. More Cabinet-level officials will follow.    [FULL  STORY]

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