Macau elites applause NPC’s HK national security proposal

Macau Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng (left) and Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam attend the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Friday (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, Pool)

Macau members of the National People’s Congress (NPC) have commended China’s proposal to establish a national security organization in Hong Kong.

Earlier this week, the NPC submitted a draft decision to the China’s national legislature on enhancing the Central Government’s authorization towards Hong Kong affairs with national security method.

Considering Hong Kong’s situation at present, China advanced the institutional building to safeguard national security on the course of China’s Constitution and the Basic Law of HK.

During today’s (Friday’s) NPC, Chinese Prime Minister, once again, mentioned Hong Kong and Macau in approximately 100 words.

The 100 words are speeches repeated during many previous NPC meetings. It talks about the implementation of One Country, Two Systems, Hong Kong people governing Hong Kong, Macau people governing Macau, the degree of autonomy in the SARs, establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanism for the special administrative regions to maintain national security, implementing the constitutional responsibility of the SAR governments, supporting Hong Kong and Macau in developing the economy, in improving people’s livelihood, in integrating into the overall nationals development, and in maintaining the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and .

After Li’s speech, Macau’s NPC concurred with the Prime Minister, according to a report by TDM.

Kou Hoi In, chairman of the Legislative Assembly (AL), who is also in Beijing attending the NPC, said that Covid-19 trembled mainland China’s economy, further adding that Li’s report, which highlighted the word “stable”, means that, from an economic perspective, Macau should also maintain livelihood, preserve the businesses of SMEs, protect employment and ensure the society’s stability.

As to the proposal of “establishing and improving the legal system and enforcement mechanisms for the HKSAR to safeguard national security, to change the long-term ‘defenseless’ status in the field of national security,” Kou said that Article 23 of the Basic Law of HK is yet to materialize. It is necessary for the country to bring up the proposal. “It is natural” for the country to continue watching on Hong Kong’s national security issue, according to Kou, who also believes that the proposal will benefit Hong Kong’s economy. Since the announcement of the national security proposal, Asia’s shares fell for two consecutive days, on Thursday and Friday.

The second NPC member and Macau lawmaker Chui Sai Peng praised China’s proposal with some vivid descriptions of the happenings inside the NPC meeting.

“Among the applauding throughout the whole morning, this one [regarding the HK national security proposal] was the loudest. I could see that all NPC representatives of the people share the same sentiment with the 1.4 billion of people,” said Chui. In Chui’s opinion, the national decision was made cautiously. Chui believes that the proposal is an “important measure in a very special time” to fulfill the duty of the Article 23.

The third member, who highly regarded the proposal, is the leader of Macau’s government sponsored Chinese newspaper Macao Daily News, Lok Po. Lok said that national security legislation is necessary and undeniable because it reflects the sovereignty and dignity of the country. He pointed out that Macau has already taken a step in advance of Hong Kong to enact the Article 23.

Chan Kam Meng, president of the Macao Federation of Trade Union (FAOM), was another voice expressing approval of the country’s decision, having acknowledged that Hong Kong’s economy and social stability are important.

During the meeting, the National Development and Reform Commission of China (Commission) proposed to link Guangdong, Macau and Hong Kong’s infrastructures all together.

The draft plan of the Economic and Social Development of China also stated China’s support to Macau in developing the SAR into a world tourism and leisure center, a service platform for trade cooperation between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries.

Macau NPC members propose Macau-Guangdong cooperation

Several Macau members of the National People’s Congress made proposals during Friday’s NPC meeting, with their motions mostly concerning Macau-Guangdong cooperation.

Si Ka Lon and Ng Siu Lai suggested the Central Government to announce plans to deepen Macau and Guangdong cooperation, specifically projects in Hengqin. The two members particularly want Macau to lead a global high-quality products trade center in Hengqin. The center should consist in an elaboration of Macau’s function as the platform between China and Portuguese speaking countries.

Chui Sai Peng, Lau Ngai Leong, among others, asked the Ministry of Tourism to provide more beneficial policies for Macau and Hong Kong’s tour guides to work in Hengqin.

Kevin Ho hopes to see more relaxed entry policies for Hengqin and Macau cross-border capital flow.

Chui Sai Cheong asked the Central Government to assist Macau in drafting books related to the constitution and the Basic Law.

O Lam’s proposal was that Guangdong, Macau and Hong Kong should establish a cooperation mechanism to deal with public hygiene crisis.

Suen Yan Kwong recommended to establish the Office for the Secretary-General in four major cities in the Greater Bay Area. He wants Macau, Hong Kong and Taiwan to be called as “domestic region” or “special region” to enhance these three places’ people’s sense of belong.

Ho Teng Iat, sister of the Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng, together with another two wishes Hengqin to lower the entry bar for retirement insurance companies.

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