Philip Dunne questions Government on efforts to ensure that business confidence in Hong Kong is maintained so that the city remains the vibrant financial centre that is so important in international trade.
Thank you, Mr Speaker.
I lived in Hong Kong for some years, including during the political transition, so I feel particularly acutely the pressures on the people who are legitimately protesting there. I welcome the fact that concerns have been expressed across the House about the way in which the Hong Kong authorities have handled the protests. Although it was more than 20 years ago, I am acutely aware of the strong and close trading and financial links between this country and Hong Kong. What can my right hon. Friend do to ensure that business confidence is maintained so that Hong Kong remains the vibrant financial centre that is so important in international trade?
My right hon. Friend is absolutely right. Of course, responsibility for respecting the stability and the economic vibrancy of Hong Kong lies with the Hong Kong Administration and more generally with the Government in China. At the level of business and civil society and in our conduct and dealings with the Hong Kong Administration and the Chinese Government, we will be very clear about where we think their interests lie and the risks of undermining of Hong Kong’s autonomy—its economic as well as its political autonomy. That touches on the issues that my right hon. Friend raised.