In this Oct 1, 2021 photo, China's national flag (five-star red flag) and the flag of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region are seen in China's Hong Kong. (PHOTO / XINHUA)
HONG KONG - The year 2022 marks the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland, and the development of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region under the principle of "patriots administering Hong Kong" will be further accelerated.
Looking ahead, stability, security, governance, celebrations, integration and prevention will be the six keywords for Hong Kong this year.
Stability is a prerequisite for the development and long-term prosperity in Hong Kong. Over the year of 2021, the implementation of the national security law in Hong Kong was deepened, the city's electoral system was improved, and elections of the Election Committee and the seventh-term Legislative Council were held successfully.
The oath-taking ceremony for 90 members of the seventh-term LegCo of the HKSAR was held earlier in January 2022, days before its opening session.
With the legislators elected under the principle of "patriots administering Hong Kong", the LegCo will surely reverse the chaotic situation in the past and play its due role in the practice of "one country, two systems" and a sound governance in Hong Kong.
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The new electoral system in the HKSAR, which the public opinion shows demonstrates broad representation, political inclusiveness, balanced participation and fair competition, lays a solid foundation for achieving a sound governance
For Hong Kong residents who have suffered the 2019 unrest, security is the greatest blessing.
During the unrest, community facilities were damaged, shopping malls and shops were vandalized and sometimes set on fire, and innocent people were beaten and maimed.
The national security law in Hong Kong has safeguarded national security, restored order and the rule of law in Hong Kong, and provided legal guarantee for Hong Kong's lasting stability.
"The national security law in Hong Kong is a law that benefits the country, the HKSAR and the people," said Kwong Ka Yin, president of the Asia Pacific Law Association, adding that the effectiveness of the national security law will continue to protect the city.
The huge task of developing the economy and improving people's livelihood calls for courageous and responsible administrators in the HKSAR, who are required to face up to the deep-seated problems in the society, resolve issues such as housing, employment and healthcare, and constantly improve the HKSAR's governance capacity.
The new electoral system in the HKSAR, which the public opinion shows demonstrates broad representation, political inclusiveness, balanced participation and fair competition, lays a solid foundation for achieving a sound governance.
According to a recent poll published by the Hong Kong-based think tank Bauhinia Institute, around 70 percent of the respondents think that the new LegCo can better represent the overall interest of the Hong Kong society, and more than 70 percent said they have confidence in the new LegCo members performing their duties well and promoting good governance.
July 1, 2022 is the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland. The HKSAR government is preparing a variety of celebration activities under the theme of "A New Era - Stability, Prosperity, Opportunity."
Among the celebrations will be a number of large-scale exhibitions including the opening show of the Hong Kong Palace Museum featuring Chinese cultural relics from Beijing's Palace Museum.
The HKSAR government will also organize a series of arts and cultural events, including a grand parade by disciplined services and youth groups, and the Hong Kong Wine and Dine Festival.
Moreover, a series of international forums, conferences and symposiums will be held.
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The 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) for national economic and social development supports Hong Kong's efforts to promote its position as a global financial, shipping and trade hub, to strengthen its role in offshore renminbi business, and international asset management and risk management, to become the center for legal and dispute resolution services in the Asia-Pacific, and to develop high-end and high value added services industry.
The five-year plan also encourages Hong Kong to do more in terms of innovation and technology and intellectual property trading, as well as international cultural and arts exchanges.
"Hong Kong is to see one of its best times," Liang Haiming, a Hong Kong economist and chairman of China Silk Road iValley Research Institute, said, adding that in 2022, Hong Kong will get more opportunities and benefits from further participating in the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and integrating into the overall development of the country.
The HKSAR government is determined and ready to combat COVID-19 to the end.
At the beginning of 2022, it rapidly put in place a series of stringent measures in response to local transmissions of the virus more than 80 days after the last report, including banning dine-in services at restaurants after 6:00 pm, mass events and non-essential gatherings, and suspension of face-to-face classes in primary schools and kindergartens.
To the more than 7 million residents in Hong Kong, defeating the pandemic is one of their best wishes for 2022.
HONG KONG NEWS