Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam is optimistic U.S. President Joe Biden will give her government “a fair hearing” on its controversial security law, according to CNBC. The security law was criticized by Trump’s administration last year, after it was imposed in Hong Kong by Beijing, bypassing the city’s lawmakers.
- Lam denied that Hong Kong is a sticking point between the U.S. and Beijing but insisted that the former has sometimes used the city as a “pawn” in its dealings with China.
- Lam was among the 11 individuals sanctioned by Trump’s administration following the implementation of the security law for “undermining Hong Kong’s autonomy.”
- Following the security law, the U.S rolled back Hong Kong’s special status under American law that treated it differently from other Chinese cities.
- Hong Kong has reached the World Trade Organization to dispute the U.S. removal of the city’s special status.
- The city has been battling multiple challenges, including the U.S-China trade war, months of pro-democracy protests in 2019, and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
- Hong Kong’s economy has contracted for five consecutive quarters on a year over year basis as of the third quarter of 2020.
- Liam hopes to see “some encouraging growth” in 2021 unless the pandemic worsens.
Hong Kong expects to release its fourth-quarter GDP data on Friday with forecasted declines of 6.1% for 2021, the worst performance in Asia.