China’s new “national security” law will be used to pressure businesses into compliance with Chinese Communist Party’s view of Hong Kong as subordinate to Beijing, said Gordon Chang, author of The Great U.S.-China Tech War, offering his remarks on Tuesday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Tonight with Rebecca Mansour and special guest host John Binder.
Breitbart News reported:
According to the Chinese propaganda outlet Global Times, the law allows Beijing to intervene in Hong Kong against acts of “secession, subversion of state power, terrorist activities, and collusion with foreign forces.” It also requires Beijing, not Hong Kong, officials to prosecute those accused.
The new law, passed on Tuesday, “covers everybody in Hong Kong [and] everybody else in the world as well,” Chang explained. “For instance, if you advocate what Beijing considers to be secessionism, you’re guilty. … If you happen to be in Hong Kong, or if you happen to be in a country with an extradition law with China, they could scoop you up and put you in jail for the rest of your life.”
Chang added, “It allows China to operate directly in Hong Kong. They’ve set up, in article 48, something called the Office for Safeguarding National Security, which is not subject to Hong Kong law [and] is not subject to most mainland law. Essentially, it is a state within a state and that has all sorts of implications for people who are completely unaccountable. We don’t know how this is going to be enforced, but we’ve got to assume the worst.”
Companies wishing to continue doing business with China will be pressured to toe the Chinese Communist Party’s line on Hong Kong, Chang said. He described HSBC’s expression of support for China’s “national security” law as an illustration of multinational corporations bowing to Chinese state pressure regarding political matters.
“In anticipation of the enactment of the law, Beijing got the major businesses in Hong Kong to agree to support it,” Chang noted. “For instance, HSBC was essentially forced to say in public that this law should be enacted. This really is an indication that there’s going to be a loyalty test for business in Hong Kong.”
“It’s not just someone like a businessman saying, ‘I advocate secession for Hong Kong,'” added Chang “What’s really at stake here is that mainland business partners are going to use this law to pressure their foreign partners or people that they plan to do business with.”
Chang continued, “This is going to go well beyond national security or subversion secession or terrorism. This is going to be used as a club in regular business dealings. This is what business was worried about last year with the extradition law. People in Hong Kong were worried that their mainland business partners would use the extradition law to pressure them. Well, that’s exactly what’s going to happen now with the national security legislation.”
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