Bulletin
Investor Alert

Associated Press Archives | Email alerts

May 31, 2020, 12:26 p.m. EDT

China says U.S.’s actions on Hong Kong are ‘doomed to fail’

Hong Kong says it’s ‘not unduly worried by such threats’ from Trump

new
Watchlist Relevance
LEARN MORE

Want to see how this story relates to your watchlist?

Just add items to create a watchlist now:

or Cancel Already have a watchlist? Log In

By Associated Press


AP
Pro-China supporters hit the effigy of U.S. President Donald Trump outside the U.S. Consulate during a Saturday protest in Hong Kong.

The mouthpiece newspaper of China’s ruling Communist Party said Saturday that the U.S. decision to end some trading privileges for Hong Kong “grossly interferes” in China’s internal affairs and is “doomed to fail.”

The Hong Kong government called President Donald Trump’s announcement unjustified and said it is “not unduly worried by such threats,” despite concern that they could drive companies away from the Asian financial and trading center.

An editorial in China’s official People’s Daily newspaper said that attempts at “forcing China to make concessions on core interests including sovereignty and security through blackmailing or coercion ... can only be wishful thinking and day-dreaming!”

Trump’s move came after China’s ceremonial parliament voted Thursday to bypass Hong Kong’s legislature and develop and enact national security legislation on its own for the semi-autonomous territory. Democracy activists and many legal experts worry that the laws could curtail free speech and opposition political activities.

See: Trump says will quit World Health Organization, begin to revoke special treatment for Hong Kong as China brawl ramps up

China had issued no official response as of late Saturday, but earlier said it would retaliate if the U.S. went ahead with its threat to revoke trading advantages granted to Hong Kong after its handover from British to Chinese rule in 1997.

“This hegemonic act of attempting to interfere in Hong Kong affairs and grossly interfere in China’s internal affairs will not frighten the Chinese people and is doomed to fail,” the People’s Daily said.

In Hong Kong, small groups of Beijing supporters marched to the U.S. Consulate on Saturday carrying Chinese flags and signs protesting “American interference in China’s internal affair” and calling Trump “shameless and useless.”

Elsewhere in the city, youthful activists including Joshua Wong held a news conference to welcome Trump’s announcement and try to downplay any economic fallout.

Tensions between the U.S. and China over Hong Kong have increased over the past year, with the U.S. defending pro-democracy protesters who clashed with police last year and China vilifying them as terrorists and separatists.

“It is now clear that Hong Kong is caught in the middle of major China-U.S. tensions,” said Tara Joseph, president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong. “That is a real shame for Hong Kong and it will be a challenge in the months ahead.”

Joseph said there were many unanswered questions about how the trading relationship will unravel and predicted that “it won’t be like flipping a switch.”

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo set the stage for Trump’s announcement by notifying Congress on Wednesday that Hong Kong no longer has the high degree of autonomy that it is guaranteed under the “one country, two systems” framework.

Trump said Friday that his administration would begin eliminating the “full range” of agreements that had given Hong Kong a relationship with the U.S. that mainland China lacked, including exemptions from controls on certain exports.

“China has replaced its promised formula of one country, two systems, with one country, one system,” he said, echoing statements by pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong.

1 2
This Story has 0 Comments
Be the first to comment
More News In
Economy & Politics

Story Conversation

Commenting FAQs »
Link to MarketWatch's Slice.