Hong Kong: EU report highlights alarming political deterioration

The European Commission and the High Representative have today reported on political and economic developments in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region during the year 2020. The annual report highlights that Hong Kong experienced a further severe erosion of its high degree of autonomy, democratic principles and fundamental freedoms that the Chinese authorities committed to protect until at least 2047.

EU High Representative/Vice President Josep Borrell (pictured) said: “Over the course of 2020, we have witnessed an alarming political deterioration in Hong Kong. The National Security Law imposed by Beijing is being used to crack down on pro-democracy forces, stifle dissent and pluralism, and erode fundamental freedoms. The arrest of dozens of pro-democracy activists in January this year confirmed that this trend is accelerating. China is consciously dismantling the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ principle in violation of its international commitments and the Hong Kong Basic Law. The regressive electoral changes approved yesterday in Beijing are yet another step down this path.”

The report covers the consequences of the imposition by Beijing of the National Security Law (NSL), highlighting its chilling effect on rights and freedoms, as well as the concerns about the extra-territorial effects of the NSL and its consequences for EU citizens, companies and interests. The report also covers EU-Hong Kong trade and investment in 2020. A full press release is available online. For more information on EU-Hong Kong relations, consult the website of the EU Office.