Summary: Daniel Fung on the Rule of Law and Hong Kong's Competitiveness

  • The rule of law is important but it is only one aspect of Hong Kong’s competitiveness
  • The basis of the legal systems of Hong Kong and the mainland differ: common law (British) vs civil law (top-down approach, continental)
  • Where Hong Kong has failed is in education, culture and the environment
  • Education:
    Cantonese as the language of instruction will diminish Hong Kong's cosmopolitan outlook
    There is resistance to academic programs that emphasize critical thinking over rote learning
    Too much emphasis on producing lawyers and investment bankers

    Lack of variety of options and opportunities
    Where are the big bookshops and good movies?
    Young people just want to hang out and play video games

    Hong Kong investment in factories in southern China is responsible for a great deal of the problem
    We cannot wait for others to resolve the problem
  • The moon cake problem: What happens when the mainland is able to make moon cakes of the same quality as HK's
  • HK-Shenzhen - Lifting of the border may happen soon. But we still drive on different sides of the road? ie how can there be a merger if the bases of our legal systems differ so fundamentally?