‘Hard to See’ Hong Kong Remaining the Asian Financial Center if China Takes Over


Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” White House National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien hinted at penalties for Hong Kong if the communist Chinese authorities takes over.

According to O’Brien, it could be “hard to see” Hong Kong persevering with as the Asian monetary heart it’s now with China in cost.

TODD: Let me begin with the Hong Kong subject. What is the United States authorities ready to do if Beijing goes by with principally this crackdown on Hong Kong and strikes Hong Kong away from an open market and an open democracy?

O’BRIEN: Well, as you realize, Chuck, the Communist Party of China promised Great Britain again in 1984 with the Sino-British declaration that Hong Kong would have a level of autonomy and would preserve their lifestyle by 2047.

So, now 27 years earlier than that deadline, it seems to be like with this nationwide safety regulation, they’re going to principally take over Hong Kong. And if they do, below the 1992 Hong Kong Policy Act and the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act of 2019, Secretary Pompeo would doubtless be unable to certify that Hong Kong maintains a excessive diploma of autonomy. And if that occurs, there shall be sanctions that shall be imposed on Hong Kong and China.

It’s onerous to see how Hong Kong may stay the Asian monetary heart that it’s develop into if China takes over.

TODD: Do you need that to be the response? If China does this, do you hope that the monetary companies neighborhood, that international companies, pull out of Hong Kong instantly?

O’BRIEN: I simply don’t see how they will keep. One purpose that they got here to Hong Kong is as a result of there was the rule of regulation there, there was a free enterprise system, there was a capitalist system, there was democracy in native legislative elections. If all of these issues go away, I’m undecided how the monetary neighborhood can keep there.

And I believe you’re additionally going to have a horrible mind drain. I believe Hong Kong residents, lots of whom can journey below sure circumstances, can journey to the United Kingdom or search refuge different locations, they’re not going to keep in Hong Kong to be dominated by the People’s Republic of China and the Communist Party. So, I believe if China goes by and imposes this regulation, which I believe could be an enormous mistake, I believe it’s going to be very tough for the individuals of Hong Kong.

TODD: Do you actually assume China goes to be nervous about sanctions and that’s going to cease them at this level? It appears as if he’s so nervous about the demonstrations. Is a menace of sanctions sufficient to get China to pull again?

O’BRIEN: Well, I believe what we will all be happy with are the individuals of Hong Kong who’ve taken to the streets to present all of us who get pleasure from democracy and the rule of regulation in our nations how treasured that’s. And they’re out in the streets this weekend demonstrating that they need to be free individuals, that they need to elect their very own leaders and have the proper to worship as they see match and earn a residing the means they see match.

So, look, China’s depending on capital from the remainder of the world. To construct their economic system and develop their center class, they’re depending on liquidity in monetary markets. If they lose entry of that by Hong Kong, that’s an actual blow to Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party. So I hope they’ll take that under consideration as they ponder their subsequent step.

TODD: You know, over the final six months, when these demonstrations started, the president was in negotiations on an enormous commerce settlement with Xi and China. And throughout that point, he, himself, by no means actually acquired robust, by no means stood up in help of the demonstrators. Others in the administration did, however he was cautious and quite a lot of reporting mentioned he didn’t need to upset the commerce deal.

Did that prove to be a mistake?

O’BRIEN: No, I don’t assume it was a mistake. We need good relations with China and with the Chinese individuals,. however sadly, we’re seeing simply motion after motion by the Chinese Communist Party that makes it tough. And with respect to the commerce deal, we’ll see if they dwell up to it, however we’re dealing in a brand new world now with Corona. They unleashed a virus on the world that’s destroyed trillions of dollars in American financial wealth that we’re having to spend to preserve our economic system alive, to preserve Americans afloat throughout this virus. So we’re in a really totally different world.

The cover-up that they did of the virus goes to go down in historical past together with Chernobyl. We’ll see an HBO particular about it 10 or 15 years from now. And so, we’re in a unique place with China as we communicate right now, Chuck.

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