Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor told reporters before the Executive Council meeting on Tuesday that the central government will soon announce the guiding principles for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area development. She also assured the public the Bay Area city cluster would not affect the “one country, two systems” principle which the two special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macao enjoy according to their respective Basic Laws. It is not surprising that some people in Hong Kong have expressed “concerns” over the effectiveness of “one country, two systems” in the SAR once the Bay Area becomes a regional economic entity of some kind. However, such worries are entirely unnecessary because the Bay Area will never become an administrative region on its own or a part of Guangdong, as some “fear” it might.
Those who have followed discussions over the Bay Area may have noticed that some “commentators” got carried away by their own imagination at one point or another and expressed “concerns” and even “fear” for the integrity of “one country, two systems” in Hong Kong when the city cluster development program demands a leader that can only be Guangdong for obvious reasons. Such assumptions are commonplace especially among those naysayers who always say the improbable no matter how many times they have been proved wrong. In this case the “concerns” and “fear” seemed to have stemmed from the debate over which of the three regions should “lead” the Bay Area city cluster development despite the fact that neither the central authorities nor the regional governments concerned have shown even the slightest interest in acknowledging the need for one to begin with.
Let’s keep in mind that the Bay Area is an important part of the national development strategy adopted by the central government. The three parties involved — Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao — are expected to cooperate in a complimentary manner to make better use of all the resources available, so all of them will benefit from its success while contributing to the sustainable development of the whole nation. The Bay Area city cluster is never about Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao only, or who takes the lead for that matter. There is absolutely no way the city cluster development may somehow weaken “one country, two systems” in Hong Kong and Macao, because it is actually intended to enhance “one country, two systems” by giving the two SARs bigger roles to play in the national development strategy and let them thrive even more.
If anyone is trying to create a rivalry between “two systems” out of the unfounded “concerns” or “fear” mentioned above, they’d better give up now than being knocked in the head by reality sooner or later. It’s all a waste of breath anyway.
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