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Businesses ‘more concerned’ now about Hong Kong security lawND
Eric Cheung and Laura He, CNN Business, July 13, 2020
Businesses are fearing the implications that will potentially be brought about by Hong Kong’s controversial national security law. The law was passed at the end of last month, and according to a new survey conducted by the American Chamber of Commerce, more than 68 per cent of businesses in Hong Kong said they were “more concerned” than a month ago. About half of the companies that responded were American, and 35 per cent have headquarters in Hong Kong. The survey reveals that companies are most worried about the ambiguity of the new legislation. Particularly, the independence of the judicial system, Hong Kong’s status as an international business hub, concerns over data security, the removal of the country’s autonomy, and the potential for other governments to retaliate with tariffs and export controls. Some respondents said that the potential for arbitrary application of the new law is “frightening” as the uncertainty could hinder investment and talent flows to the city. Nearly two-thirds of respondents said they will wait and see before making any significant move in their business strategy. “I believe international firms will slowly leave the city for other headquarter cities in Asia. Maybe it takes 20 years, but Hong Kong will become another Chinese city,” one respondent said.
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