• Hong Kong, Kashmir : a Tale of Two Occupations — Strategic Culture
    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/08/07/hong-kong-kashmir-a-tale-of-two-occupations

    L’histoire de la RDA et du mur de Berlin nous a montre que les idée aussi erronnées soient-elles ajoutent à la réalité objective la force nécessaire pour la pousser vers un changement radical. Ceci n’arrivera pas à Hongkong mais au Cachemire la folie hindoue risque de provoquer un conflit majeur. Comptons sur la sagesse du gouvernement de Pekin pour éviter le pire à ses voisins.

    While China identified “Occupy Hong Kong” as a mere Western-instilled and instrumentalized plot, India, for its part, decided to go for Full Occupy in Kashmir.

    Curfew was imposed all across the Kashmir valley. Internet was cut off. All Kashmiri politicians were rounded up and arrested. In fact all Kashmiris – loyalists (to India), nationalists, secessionists, independentists, apolitical – were branded as The Enemy. Welcome to Indian “democracy” under the crypto-fascist Hindutva.

    “Jammu and Kashmir”, as we know it, is no more. They are now two distinct entities. Geologically spectacular Ladakh will be administered directly by New Delhi. Blowback is guaranteed. Resistance committees are already springing up.
    In Kashmir, blowback will be even bigger because there will be no elections anytime soon. New Delhi does not want that kind of nuisance – as in dealing with legitimate representatives. It wants full control, period.

    Starting in the early 1990s, I’ve been to both sides of Kashmir a few times. The Pakistani side does feel like Azad (“Free”) Kashmir. The Indian side is unmistakably Occupied Kashmir. This analysis is as good as it gets portraying what it means to live in IOK (Indian-occupied Kashmir).

    BJP minions in India scream that Pakistan “illegally” designated Gilgit-Baltistan – or the Northern Areas – as a federally administered area. There’s nothing illegal about it. I was reporting in Gilgit-Baltistan late last year, following the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Nobody was complaining about any “illegality”.

    Pakistan officially said it “will exercise all possible options to counter [India’s] illegal steps” in Kashmir. That’s extremely diplomatic. Imran Khan does not want confrontation – even as he knows full well Modi is pandering to Hindutva fanatics, aiming to turn a Muslim-majority province into a Hindu-majority province. In the long run though, something inevitable is bound to emerge – fragmented, as a guerrilla war or as a united front.

    Welcome to the Kashmiri Intifada.

    #Chine #Inde #Hongkong #Cachemire

  • Hongkongs Taxifahrer werden zu Opfern der Unruhen
    https://www.taxi-times.com/hongkongs-taxifahrer-werden-zu-opfern-der-unruhen

    18. Oktober 2019 von Wim Faber - „Mein Einkommen ist seit Juni zurückgegangen und meine Familie muss deshalb den Gürtel enger schnallen“, sagte der Taxifahrer Tse Ting-Cheung der Presseagentur Xinhua. Tse ist seit über 10 Jahren Taxifahrer in Hongkong. In seinen Augen waren die letzten vier Monate die schlimmste Zeit in seiner Karriere als Taxifahrer.

    Aufgrund der Ausschreitungen und dem damit verbundenen Chaos ist die Zahl der Touristen und regulären Fahrgäste rapide in den letzten vier Monaten gesunken. „Früher lag mein durchschnittliches tägliches Einkommen bei 600 bis 700 Hongkong-Dollar (ca. 60 bis 80 Euro), heute ist es bereits schwierig, 200 HK-Dollar (rund 23 Euro) pro Tag zu verdienen“, sagte Tse.

    Selbst während der „goldenen Woche“ des Tourismus in Hongkong, womit man traditionell die Zeit der chinesischen Nationalfeiertage bezeichnet, wurde die Situation nicht besser. Laut Statistiken der lokalen Behörden sank die Gesamtzahl der Touristen, die während der diesjährigen Nationalfeiertage nach Hongkong kamen, im Vergleich zum Vorjahreszeitraum um rund 30 Prozent.

    „Die diesjährige ‘goldene Woche’ war völlig anders als die vorherigen“, sagte Tse. Während der Ferien sah er nur wenige Menschen in Orten wie Tsim Sha Tsui und Mong Kok, die früher mit Touristen und Einkäufern überfüllt waren. Angesichts eines drastischen Einkommensrückganges müssen Tse und seine Frau nun jeden Cent sparen. „Manchmal gehen wir kurz vor Geschäftsschluss auf den Straßenmarkt, um Lebensmittel zu Schnäppchenpreisen zu kaufen“, sagte er.

    Wie Tse fühlen sich viele der zehntausenden Taxifahrer von den Unruhen gestresst, kommentierte Wong Tai-hoi, Generalsekretär des Hongkonger Taxiverbands. Der wirtschaftliche Druck auf die vielen Taxifahrer „hat einen kritischen Punkt erreicht“, da ihr Umsatz kaum noch die Kosten für Taximiete, Kraftstoff und andere Kosten decken kann, sagte Wong kürzlich in einem Interview mit Xinhua. Außerdem nehmen die Bedenken hinsichtlich ihrer Sicherheit unter den Taxifahrern zu, weil die Randalierer die Gewaltakte und den Vandalismus verschärft haben, sagte Wong und fügte hinzu, dass erst vor Kurzem in einer Straße in Sham Shui Po ein Taxifahrer von schwarz gekleideten Randalierern zusammengeschlagen und schwer verletzt worden sei

    Tse zeigte sich auch besorgt um seine eigene Sicherheit. „Ich bin gesprächig und unterhalte mich gerne mit meinen Kunden, aber in letzter Zeit bin ich vorsichtiger geworden. Wenn junge Leute in Schwarz in mein Taxi steigen, werde ich, um Konflikte zu vermeiden, schweigen.“

    Was die Taxifahrer in Hongkong aber am meisten beunruhigt, ist die Ungewissheit, ob sie ihre Passagiere überhaupt an ihr Ziel befördern können, denn die Gewalt breitet sich in verschiedenen Teilen Hongkongs aus und kann den Verkehr überall lahmlegen. „Die Randalierer stören nicht nur das Leben der Allgemeinheit, sondern greifen auch mutwillig Menschen an, die andere Ansichten vertreten. Das ist abstoßend“, sagte der Taxifahrer weiterhin.

    Auch der Taxiverband hat Beschwerden von vielen Taxifahrern erhalten. Sie äußern Bedenken, weil in Hongkong durch die anhaltende Gewalt Chaos herrscht. Wong vom Taxiverband wünscht sich Unterstützung von der Regierung: „Wir hoffen, dass die Behörden die Gewalt in Übereinstimmung mit den Gesetzen beenden wird, und wir hoffen auch, dass die Öffentlichkeit die Situation ähnlich sieht und sich nicht an den gewalttätigen Ausschreitungen beteiligt“, sagte er.

    #Taxi #Hongkong #China #Demonstration #Politik

  • Les petits arrangements d’Apple avec la censure à Hongkong
    https://www.lemonde.fr/pixels/article/2019/10/10/les-petits-arrangements-d-apple-avec-la-censure-a-hongkong_6014985_4408996.h

    Depuis deux semaines, à trois reprises, Apple a répondu positivement aux demandes de censure chinoises, liées aux manifestations monstres qui secouent la région semi-autonome de Hongkong depuis quelques mois.

    Le premier épisode remonte à la fin du mois de septembre : le drapeau de Taïwan, dont la Chine conteste la souveraineté depuis soixante-dix ans, disparaît des listes d’émoticônes auxquelles on accède avec le clavier des iPhone et iPad hongkongais. Celui-ci y figurait jusqu’alors, entre plusieurs centaines d’autres drapeaux nationaux, comme le signale le site d’information indépendant Hong Kong Free Press et un journaliste chinois du média américain Techcrunch.

    #hongkong #cartographie #apple #application

  • Hongkongers pay a price for their low taxes through the world’s most expensive homes and smallest living space. Here’s why | South China Morning Post
    https://www.scmp.com/business/article/3029820/hongkongers-pay-price-their-low-taxes-through-worlds-most-expensive-homes

    How Hong Kong’s housing problem, cited as one of the biggest motivations for protest rage, is linked to the city’s finances and low taxes.

    23 Sep, 2019 - by Peggy Sito, Eugene Tang - In a new series delving beyond the social unrest in Hong Kong to survey the city’s deep-rooted problems, the Post is focusing on the role of housing in causing great disaffection in society.
    In this first instalment, we examine how the issue of high land prices is linked to government financing and the low-tax environment.

    For two hours a day in the past fortnight, Edward Chan hung around after work at the Prince Edward metro station in Kowloon.

    Teenagers continued to gather at the station, and Chan, who works in logistics, found himself acting as their counsellor, dispensing advice to the youth.

    Hong Kong “is rotten to the core, with many issues affecting our livelihood, even if the city has a great international image on the surface”, according to Chan, who lives in a 350 sq ft flat with his wife and their 13-year-old daughter.

    Chan, 39, is among the tens of thousands of Hongkongers who have been expressing their collective grievances in street rallies in one of the world’s most prosperous urban centres.
    What began on June 9 as a peaceful march by an estimated 1 million people has deteriorated into mayhem on the streets
    , with police using tear gas and water cannons to disperse vandals and rioters in almost daily clashes with protesters.

    The spark that ignited the city’s worst political crisis has shifted from a controversial extradition bill to general rage against the local authorities for their ineffectiveness in addressing some of the most pressing issues affecting life in Hong Kong: housing, job satisfaction, education and future prospects.

    Unaffordable homes, and having to wait a decade to gain access to subsidised public housing, are just two of the myriad of problems confronting Hong Kong, Chan said. “There really is no opportunity for young people at the bottom of the social structure to climb up,” he said.

    While he abhors the violence and vandalism that have made daily headlines for three months, Chan’s comments go some way to explain why two weeks after Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor caved in to public rage and withdrew
    her unpopular bill, rallies continue to draw protesters by the thousands to the city’s streets.
    Hong Kong’s economy has taken a beating, with declining property prices, shrinking visitor numbers and plunging retail sales all pointing to a technical recession
    in the final three months of 2019.

    The unprecedented protests, entering their 16th week, are the culmination of many decades of neglect by a laissez-faire government of the underclass, and housing affordability has become the most poignant manifestation of this dissatisfaction.

    The root of the problem can be traced back to Hong Kong’s history, when British administrators created a low-tax system for the former colony, consistent with their strategy of running a worldwide empire. On the basis of low personal income and corporate taxes, with no value-added tax or import duties, Hong Kong quickly grew from a transshipment port and China’s front door into an international finance centre. That low-tax tradition continued after Hong Kong’s return to Chinese rule in 1997.

    Low taxes come with a hefty bill, however, as the government must look for other sources of fiscal income to spend on infrastructure, education, health and public services.

    For decades, the biggest revenue source was the sale of public land to developers for building homes, factories or shopping centres. Land premiums and stamp duties, considered non-stable tax revenue, are projected to make up 33 per cent, or more than HK$197 billion (US$25.2 billion), of the government’s income in the financial year that began on April 1, down from the last financial year’s 42 per cent.

    “Without the big chunk of income from the property market, how can the government support its expenses?” asked Moses Cheng Mo-chi, chairman of the Insurance Authority and chairman of a 2000 task force set up to explore ways of broadening Hong Kong’s tax base. “If we do not have new sources of stable income, the high land price policy will not change. We cannot get out of this” vicious cycle of high land prices, lack of affordability and public grievance, he said in an interview.
    Of course, the government has denied over the years that it has a high land-price policy. The cost of land makes up between 60 per cent and 70 per cent of the total cost
    of a typical residential property project in Hong Kong, more than double the 20 per cent to 30 per cent range seen outside the city, said Far East Consortium International’s managing director, Chris Hoong Cheong Thard
    .

    The land sale process, where the highest bidder takes the prize, creates an upwards cost spiral, as the winning bid in one round becomes the prevailing market price, which must be topped in the next round. As land costs soar, small developers such as Far East – valued at one-36th of Sun Hung Kai Properties
    (SHKP) – are priced out of the city to build overseas.
    That further concentrates the property market, along with the wealth and influence that come along with it, in the hands of a handful of developers
    .

    About 45 per cent of all homes sold in Hong Kong are built by five developers – CK Assets of the Li family, SHKP of the Kwoks, Henderson Land of the Lee family, New World Development of the Chengs and Sino Land of the Ng family.

    That has put them at the top of the wealth list. Eighteen, or 36 per cent, of the 50 richest people in Hong Kong in 2019 were property tycoons, according to Forbes.

    “Capitalism creates a business environment where the winner takes all,” said Ronald Chan, founder of investment firm Chartwell Capital and a member of the Hong Kong stock exchange’s Listing Committee. “Several companies … dominate Hong Kong, consolidating control of sectors from supermarkets to pharmacies, jewellery stores to utilities and telecoms to transport networks.”

    The fortunes of Hong Kong’s 93 wealthiest billionaires – estimated at US$315 billion in 2018 – made up about 86.6 per cent of the city’s gross domestic product, according to Wealth-X’s Billionaire Census.
    The remainder of Hong Kong’s population has become poorer, with a record 1.37 million residents living below the poverty line in 2017
    , eking out a living on as little as HK$4,000 (US$510) a month, according to government data.

    The average Hong Kong household needs 20.9 years of income, without spending anything on food, education, travel or leisure, to afford a flat, according to the Demographia International Housing Affordability Study.
    The average living space per person in Hong Kong is 161 sq ft
    , roughly the footprint of a standard 20-foot shipping container. That is half of Singapore’s average space of 323 sq ft per person. The poorest of Hong Kong’s families must put up with 50 sq ft of living space.

    To be sure, Hong Kong’s government has not been unaware of the problem. Former Financial Secretary Henry Tang Ying-yen and former Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Frederick Ma Si-han tried in 2003 to implement a goods and services tax based on the recommendations of Cheng’s task force to broaden the fiscal income base, but had to scrap the plan amid opposition by the city’s interest groups, who exert their influence through the functional and district constituencies in the local legislature.

    Will the current political crisis and outpouring of rage provide an opportunity to break the policy gridlock and solve Hong Kong’s housing problem?
    Commentaries published last week by the state-run Xinhua News Agency, People’s Daily and the stridently nationalist Global Times all singled out unaffordable housing as a cause
    of Hong Kong’s street protests.

    “For the sake of public interest, and for the sake of people’s livelihoods, it is time developers show their utmost sincerity instead of minding their own business, hoarding land for profit and earning the last penny,” People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of the Communist Party, said.

    A day before the commentaries were published, Hong Kong’s biggest pro-Beijing political party pushed for the Lands Resumption Ordinance, and called on the local government to build public housing on land taken from private developers, who hold about 100 million sq ft of farmland between them, according to an estimate by Bank of America Merrill Lynch
    .
    Hong Kong’s government responded immediately by pushing ahead with a tax on developers who hoard completed flats
    to create an artificial shortage of homes.

    Public consultation on the proposal started on September 13 and the bill will be ready for legislators to vet in October, when they return from their summer break. Land and housing policies are expected to be the focus of Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s Policy Address, which will be announced next month.
    Some developers are pushing back
    . The Real Estate Developers’ Association (Reda), the powerful industry lobby, said on September 13 that the proposed vacancy tax would intensify a slowdown in the property market, hurt developers’ earnings and exacerbate the city’s economic slump.

    “Can the government solve the city’s housing issue on its own, without the help of private developers?” said Reda chairman Stewart Leung Chi-kin. “If that were the case, the problem should have been solved years ago.”

    Analysts said the low-interest rate environment in Hong Kong will continue and that could pressure Lam into cooling home prices.

    On Thursday, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the city’s de facto central bank, matched a move by the US Federal Reserve and cut its base rate to 2.25 per cent. But homeowners will not feel their burden ease immediately because commercial banks will keep their prime rate, the rate offered to customers, unchanged. That raises the spectre that declining home prices will hamstring Lam’s reforms.

    Hong Kong is not short of land, where 40 per cent of the city’s land mass is reserved as nature parks. But focusing on land supply was akin to addressing the symptoms of a disease, not finding a cure for the cause, said the Insurance Authority’s Cheng.

    “We need government leaders, political parties, interest groups to realise the importance of harmony. They need to make sacrifices for the greater good, ” he said.

    A short-term solution might be possible through the privatisation of subsidised public housing, which would allow many existing public flats to add to the supply and provide immediate relief, said Richard Wong Yue-chim, professor of economics and the Philip Wong Kennedy Wong Professor in Political Economy at Hong Kong University.

    “Turning public flats into home ownership flats is by far the fastest way to address our housing crisis without increasing land supply”, because land reform was complicated by vested interests and bureaucratic delays, as well as restrictive planning and building codes, he said.

    “Home ownership is a source of savings and wealth accumulation. There is wealth disparity between those who own a flat and those do not, so people feel the inequality,” Wong said. “When young people see no hope of moving forward with their lives, no hope to own a home, they take to the streets.”

    Singapore, a city state where most residents live in high-rise buildings, may offer a solution for Hong Kong. The city state’s Central Provident Fund, as the mandatory pension is called, can be used for paying mortgages, insurance and even education, unlike Hong Kong’s Mandatory Provident Fund, which is usable only for retirement.

    Hong Kong’s government could let the MPF subsidise low-interest rate mortgages for certain groups, such as young married couples, to help them get on the property ladder, said Chartwell’s Chan.

    Would that help cool the rage that is fuelling Hong Kong’s protests?

    “It’s so difficult to get onto the housing ladder,” said Chan at Price Edward station. “I’m probably unqualified for a flat because I don’t have a tertiary degree. I hope I can do it one day, but only if I start a business, not by working a regular job.”

    Additional reporting by Liu Yujing

    #Chine #Hongkong #immobilier #logement #crise

    • In my opinion, i come to live in HK in 1995 before the retro-cession. When HK go back to china, any chinese people spend 7 millions HKD in property get residential visa in HK, it’s the way for the chinese to escape communist, and too protect they’r money.
      Second problem, Hk still allow 150 chinese mainland to live in HK every day, already more than 1 million chinese mainland living in HK ! the city of 6 millions Hongkongais grow to 7 millions with the chinese immigrants, but we cannot push the wall in HK, this is insane.

  • Scapegoats or scoundrels? Why ties between Beijing and Hong Kong’s property tycoons are unravelling amid protest crisis | South China Morning Post
    https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/politics/article/3030209/scapegoats-or-scoundrels-why-ties-between-beijing-and-hong

    25 Sep, 2019 by Gary Cheung - In a new series delving beyond the social unrest in Hong Kong to survey the city’s deep-rooted problems, the Post is focusing on the role of housing in causing great disaffection in society
    In this second instalment, we examine the close ties between the city’s property tycoons and Beijing, and how a recalibration might be due.

    In January 1996, when Jiang Zemin crossed the vast expanse of a crowded room to shake Tung Chee-hwa’s hand, the Chinese president set off a storm of speculation that the shipping magnate would be Hong Kong’s first chief executive.

    Exactly 11 months later, Tung was elected by a small committee to the top job. But the Post learned recently that well before the famous handshake, Jiang received a letter in late 1995 recommending Tung for the post when the city was returned to China in 1997 after 150 years of British colonial rule.
    The letter was penned by the colony’s richest man, Li Ka-shing
    , and Beijing princeling Larry Yung Chi-kin, head of Citic Pacific, one of the first mainland Chinese companies to set up shop in Hong Kong.

    A source close to Beijing who told the Post about the letter said Jiang viewed its contents positively.

    That Li could confidently offer his view to the Chinese leader revealed just how close Hong Kong’s tycoons and the Beijing elite were at the time. Yung’s father, Rong Yiren, was China’s vice-president and on good terms with the late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping.

    Indeed, from as far back as the early 1980s, when talks with Britain on Hong Kong’s future began, the property tycoons were Beijing’s main political allies. As the handover neared, Beijing’s main preoccupation was to ensure Hong Kong’s continued stability, and that meant retaining the confidence of the business community.


    Tycoon Li Ka-shing wielded considerable influence over Beijing’s elite. Photo: Felix Wong

    But two decades later, the relationship is coming under strain. If Beijing once looked to the property tycoons to help keep Hong Kong stable, it now appears to believe that they have failed to deliver.

    There are signs that the partnership has become untenable amid skyrocketing property prices and a severe shortage of affordable public housing in Hong Kong.

    Recent commentaries and editorials in China’s state media indicate Beijing is convinced Hong Kong’s housing crisis is to blame for the increasingly violent anti-government protests now in their fourth month.
    Developers owning massive land banks have found themselves targeted by China’s state media, with tycoon Li himself coming under fire. The 91-year-old drew swift criticism earlier this month for urging those in power to “provide a way out”
    for Hong Kong’s mostly young protesters, whom he described as “masters of our future”. He also said on political issues, justice might have to be tempered with mercy.

    An article published on September 13 in an official WeChat account of Beijing’s political and legal affairs commission seized on his phrase “provide a way out” and equated showing leniency to lawbreakers as being “nothing more than condoning crime”.
    As a major developer
    , it said, Li should be the one instead to provide “a way out” for Hongkongers struggling over the lack of housing.
    Unfazed, Li hit back
    , saying it was regrettable his remarks had been misinterpreted, and that “tolerance does not mean connivance and disregarding any legal procedures”.
    Commentaries also published on September 13 by the official Xinhua news agency and People’s Daily, and an editorial in the tabloid Global Times, singled out unaffordable housing as a “root cause” of the protests
    .

    The message seemed all but clear: the tycoons need to play ball and back the chief executive and the government’s policies or risk some unspecified consequences.

    Soon enough, state media then endorsed a proposal by the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB), the city’s largest pro-Beijing party, for Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor
    to invoke the Lands Resumption Ordinance and take back large swathes of unused rural land to tackle the housing problem.

    The Xinhua commentary accused some groups with vested interests of obstructing the government’s bid to boost land supply, by either hoarding or raising prices.

    Taking a tougher line, a bylined People’s Daily commentary said: “For the sake of the public interest, it is time developers show their utmost sincerity instead of minding their own business, hoarding land for profit and earning the last penny.” Ironically however, even as Beijing has been beating the drum on housing, the issue did not figure prominently among younger Hongkongers polled in a territory-wide random telephone survey conducted last month by the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute, headed by former University of Hong Kong pollster Robert Chung Ting-yiu.


    Hong Kong is the world’s most expensive property market. Photo: Roy Issa

    Only 58 per cent of respondents aged 14 to 29 said their discontent stemmed from housing problems, whereas 91 per cent cited distrust in Beijing, 84 per cent said they distrusted city leader Lam, and 84 per cent said they were moved by the “pursuit of democracy”.
    A person familiar with the central government’s views on Hong Kong said Beijing was unwilling to make concessions to Hongkongers’ calls for democracy and thus preferred to step up efforts to alleviate social ills, focusing for now on the housing shortage
    .

    In this approach, a mainland Chinese expert familiar with Hong Kong said Beijing was not off the mark as there was a consensus among various sectors in the city itself that the government badly needed to tackle deep-rooted problems like unaffordable housing and the lack of social mobility for the young.

    Asked if Beijing was demanding that Hong Kong developers do more to fix the housing problem, the expert, who declined to be named, said: “We are now talking about social responsibility. It is a matter of fact that developers are key players in Hong Kong, but protecting their legitimate rights and granting them unreasonable favours are entirely different things.”

    So, will Beijing succeed in forcing the developers to recognise their “social responsibility” and how will the relationship be recalibrated?

    A person close to property developers said Beijing’s liaison office in Hong Kong was behind the DAB’s call to invoke the Lands Resumption Ordinance to take back unused rural land.

    “Many developers know that Beijing can’t offer any meaningful solutions on political issues in Hong Kong. So it is shifting the focus to deep-seated problems like housing,” the person said. “The developers feel helpless as they can’t do much given Beijing’s growing assertiveness.”

    Lawmaker Abraham Razack, who represents the real estate sector in the Legislative Council, believed the government intends to invoke the Lands Resumption Ordinance more frequently to show it was “doing something” to arrest the decline in its popularity.

    Another source close to developers, however, felt that the government was just making property developers the scapegoat of the protest crisis.

    How powerful are Hong Kong developers?

    There is little doubt that developers wield considerable influence in Hong Kong’s political system.

    Former minister Cheung, a political scientist, said the post-handover political system was designed to protect the interests of the business sector.

    The four-sector committee which selects the chief executive comprises the city’s business elite, professionals, unionists and politicians, and developers are represented strongly among them.

    Research by the Post showed that the 1,194-strong Election Committee which selected the chief executive in 2017 included 96 members directly representing property developers and their business associates. This figure did not include those with indirect and less obvious connections with the property giants.


    The ‘Big Four’ major developers, SHKP, Henderson Land, CK Asset Holdings and New World Development hold a total of 83 million sq ft in Hong Kong. Photo: Roy Issa

    Forty-three of the 96 with direct links to developers were directors, employees or business associates of six major developers – Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP), CK Asset Holding, Henderson Land Development, New World Development, Wharf (Holdings) and Sino Land.

    Developers and their associates were represented not only on the real estate and construction subsector of the Election Committee, but also in other subsector groups like those for transport, hotel, finance and wholesale, as well as retail.

    This sprawling influence reflects their dominance of Hong Kong’s economy, with their conglomerates involved in everything from telecommunications to public utilities and supermarkets.

    For example, three of Hong Kong’s four mobile phone network operators are connected to developers: Hutchison Telecommunications is a unit of CK Hutchison, chaired by Li’s son Victor Li; Hong Kong Telecommunications (HKT) is a unit of PCCW, chaired by his younger brother, Richard Li Tzar-kai; and SmarTone Mobile Communications is owned by SHKP.

    Housing’s dreadful decade

    How did developers rise to such a level of power and influence, and how did Hong Kong’s housing situation become so dire?

    One of the first things Tung Chee-hwa did on becoming leader after the handover was to announce ambitious housing targets: 85,000 flats a year, comprising 50,000 public and 35,000 private units.

    But the Asian financial crisis followed and hit the property market so hard that Tung was forced to declare in 2000 that his plan for 85,000 flats a year no longer existed.

    By then, too, the government had introduced an “application list system” through which it published a list of available sites for sale each year. Interested developers could make private offers to the government, and a public auction was arranged if the offers met the undisclosed reserve price.

    “This system allowed developers to take the initiative in controlling land supply,” said Stan Wong Hok-wui, a political scientist at Polytechnic University who has studied the political influence of the real estate elite.

    The system was abolished in 2013.

    Tung’s government also suspended indefinitely the Home Ownership Scheme, which provided subsidised flats for sale to lower-middle-income applicants.

    “It was a tragedy for Tung to close down the public housing programme and allow developers to shrink the supply of private housing,” said Leo Goodstadt, head of the colonial government’s Central Policy Unit think tank from 1989 to 1997.

    That move rescued private developers from the acute pressure of the market in the wake of the financial crisis, he said. But it also removed the element of government competition that came when subsidised public flats provided an alternative to those built by private developers.

    Goodstadt said: “Tung is a businessman and shared what the property developers believed. It’s quite likely that when property developers raised the issue, he agreed with them.”


    Former secretary for transport and housing, Anthony Cheung. Photo: Felix Wong

    Anthony Cheung said Tung had no choice but to cut housing supply in the wake of the Asian financial crisis, which resulted in a substantial number of cases of negative equity.

    “It would also threaten the banking system if the situation got worse. To be fair, anybody who was in that position had to do something to stabilise the property market.”

    The government went on to tighten supply during the administration of Donald Tsang Yam-kuen, the city’s second chief executive. The annual housing supply of private, subsidised and public rental flats was more than halved from 59,800 units in 2006 to 25,700 by 2016.

    A government source familiar with land matters said on hindsight, it was too late for Tsang to resume the Home Ownership Scheme in 2010, eight years after it was suspended. But it is clear that the impact of the further tightening under Tsang is still being felt to this day.

    Another source closely involved in the land mechanism said the government’s hands were tied over land supply because it had scaled back land production more than 10 years ago. “We are now scrambling hard to catch up,” the person said.

    Cheung said Leung Chun-ying, who succeeded Tsang as chief executive in 2012, spared no effort in boosting land supply. “Leung was also never hesitant to take on developers when it came to reining in the red-hot property market,” Cheung added.

    Leung also revived the city’s long-term housing strategy, under which private and public housing targets are set and reviewed annually.

    Leung set an ambitious pledge to provide a total of 480,000 public and private units by 2025, of which 200,000 will be public rental flats, 90,000 will be subsidised flats for sale and 190,000 will be private homes. He failed to meet the target for public housing and was out after one term.

    The ensuing shortage caused home prices to soar over a decade right until the end of last year.

    A massive private land bank

    Today, there is little dispute that developers have the upper hand in land ownership.

    The “Big Four” major developers, SHKP, Henderson Land, CK Asset Holdings and New World Development hold a total of 83 million sq ft in Hong Kong, according to their annual reports.

    A recent report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch said they also held a total of 107.3 million sq ft of farmland – nearly 1,000 hectares – in the New Territories. That is nearly 25 times the size of the waterfront West Kowloon Cultural District.

    Henderson Land is tops in terms of the farmland it owns, with 45.9 million sq ft, followed by SHKP with 31 million sq ft, New World Development with 17 million sq ft, and Li’s CK Assets with 13.4 million sq ft.

    More than a million public flats could be built on the farmland held by the four developers, but the government has yet to identify land to build 67,000 public housing units to meet its 10-year housing supply target.

    Currently, there are 256,100 applications for public rental flats alone, with a waiting period of 5.4 years.

    Goodstadt said senior Beijing officials responsible for Hong Kong affairs must have been looking at what was wrong with the city in the wake of the anti-government protests.

    “What could be causing people to protest like this, in such large numbers? One thing that is dreadful in Hong Kong is housing,” he said.

    Does Beijing’s recent tirade against the Hong Kong developers signal that a 40-year honeymoon is coming to an end?

    Ray Yep, a professor with City University’s department of public policy, does not believe so. “Beijing just wants to rally their support in putting an end to the violence in the city,” he said.

    But others point out that Beijing began cooling its ties with developers well before the current protests, ever since Xi Jinping became president in 2012.

    They note that Beijing leaders hold fewer meetings with Hong Kong tycoons when they visit the city these days compared to the past, to avoid criticism that they care only about the rich.

    In the past Li Ka-shing’s close ties with Jiang were well-documented. Li played host to the former president during his visits to Hong Kong in 1997, 1998 and 2001. Jiang stayed at CK Assets’s Harbour Grand Hotel in Hung Hom and would have breakfast with Li and his sons.

    Such private meetings came to an end when Xi took the helm.

    In the ongoing social unrest, Beijing has made plain its dissatisfaction with property owners who appear to waver over where their loyalties lie.

    Last month, Global Times editor Hu Xijin lashed out at the popular Harbour City shopping centre in Tsim Sha Tsui for “kowtowing” to protesters
    by banning police from entering the premises unless a crime was committed.

    Referring to the notices put up by mall owner Wharf Real Estate Investment, he asked in an article posted on Weibo: “Are you trying to turn Harbour City into a lawless land that is subject to the will of the rioters?”

    The source close to Beijing noted that today, the central government was not at all worried about alienating or offending Hong Kong’s developers.

    He pointed out that Beijing was in a much more powerful position now than in the 1980s when it needed the developers’ support in an uncertain period, and where its own international standing had yet to be firmly cemented.

    Former Hong Kong minister Cheung said Beijing could see that the ongoing protests as largely a youth-led movement must have deeper underlying causes that needed fixing to prevent it festering into the future.

    But Cheung suggested Beijing might not be doing a thorough enough assessment. “I hope Beijing will analyse Hong Kong’s deep-rooted conflicts in a comprehensive way, rather than reduce the root of the crisis to unaffordable housing,” he said.

    Ellen Lau, a 24-year-old university employee who has participated actively in the protests since June, said she was more concerned about Carrie Lam’s poor governance and, more recently, allegations of police brutality.

    “Unaffordable housing seldom comes to my mind when I take part in the protests,” she said. “My grievances and those of many friends of mine would not be eased even if the government tackles housing problem effectively.”

    But Edmund Cheng Wai, a political scientist at Baptist University, felt housing woes did affect some protesters, particularly those born after 1990.

    He noted that 48.4 per cent of more than 6,100 demonstrators interviewed by a research team from Chinese, Baptist and Lingnan universities since June were aged between 20 and 29, the so-called “post-90s generation”.

    “Many suffer from lower social mobility and their career prospects can’t compare with that of the older generations,” he said.

    Steve, a 24-year-old civil servant, said he had attended most of the protests since June to vent his anger at “property hegemony”, a catchphrase used to describe the tycoons’ stranglehold over Hong Kong. Young people like him cannot afford a home and feel left out of the system, he said.

    “And the government is powerless in the face of the property hegemony,” Steve added.

    “The present political system is tilted in favour of property developers. The government is unable to tackle housing issues because property developers wield tremendous influence in the Election Committee and functional constituencies in Legco.

    “Many young people feel they don’t have a stake in society. Some even feel they have nothing to lose.”

    #Chine #Hongkong #immobilier #logement #crise

  • Mouvement à Hongkong
    Une discussion avec le Workers Group

    Bad Kids of the World, Workers Group

    https://lavoiedujaguar.net/Mouvement-a-Hongkong-Une-discussion-avec-le-Workers-Group

    L’interview suivante a été réalisée sur Internet au cours du mois d’août. Des camarades de différents pays — quelques « Bad Kids of the World » — ont posé des questions sur le mouvement anti-extradition à un camarade du Workers Group, un collectif prolétarien de Hongkong.

    Beaucoup de gens à Hongkong ne comprennent pas pourquoi le gouvernement chinois a choisi d’adopter ce projet de loi sur l’extradition à cette date précise. Je crois qu’ils ont un calendrier pour cela. Ce que je veux dire, c’est que depuis 2012, lorsque Xi Jinping est devenu président de la Chine, il a décidé de renforcer son contrôle sur le pays. Il a pris beaucoup de mesures. Premièrement, il a réformé la structure du gouvernement pour que le pouvoir soit concentré entre ses seules mains. Deuxièmement, il y a eu beaucoup de répression à l’encontre de la société civile en Chine. Les mouvements — y compris les familles, et les avocats, les militants syndicaux — ont tous été réprimés. Et le gouvernement exerce un contrôle encore plus strict sur les médias qu’auparavant. D’autre part, le Parti communiste exige également que toutes les entreprises, même les entreprises privées, créent une branche du Parti communiste. Ce qui veut dire que le PC se développe et essaie d’être le leader de chaque institution sociale. Voilà ce qui se passe en Chine. (...)

    #Chine #Hongkong #mouvement_anti-extradition #Xi_Jinping #répression #organisation

  • Patients waiting more than three years for specialist care in Hong Kong, as doctors call for new department to manage public-private sector relationship | South China Morning Post
    https://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/health-environment/article/3009592/patients-waiting-more-three-years-specialist-care


    Dans les années 1980 et encore 1990 Hongkong se présentait comme une combinaison entre une état de providence réduit au stricte minimum et un capitalisme sauvage qui promettait à chacun to get rich quick . Actuellement cet amalgame est en train de s’écrouler sous les coups de la concurrence des régions de Shenzhen et Shanghai. Les membres les plus faibles de cette société en paient le prix.

    Association of Private Medical Specialists wants government to create new medical aid department. Survey of 200 professionals finds poor working conditions and long hours causing doctors to quit Hospital Authority

    Published: 8:30pm, 9 May, 2019, updated: 9:47am, 10 May, 2019

    Private doctors want the government to create a new department to manage their cooperation with public hospitals and shorten waiting times for specialists services, which for some patients in Hong Kong is now more than three years.

    A study conducted last month by the Association of Private Medical Specialists of Hong Kong also highlighted the frustration doctors faced in the public sector, citing an unsatisfactory work environment and lack of time as reasons for leaving the Hospital Authority.

    According to Dr Samuel Kwok Po-yin, the association’s president, hospital congestion, long working hours and a lack of doctors all contributed to problems faced by the medical sector in the city.

    “The biggest problem in the medical sector is the waiting time for stable new case bookings at specialist outpatient clinics,” Kwok said.

    #santé #Hongkong

  • De l’Argentine, de la Baltique et de quelques autres choses
    http://www.chroniquesdugrandjeu.com/2019/08/de-l-argentine-de-la-baltique-et-de-quelques-autres-choses.htm

    Tour d’horizon des points chauds du Grand jeu... A tout seigneur tout honneur, le chef de l’Organisation de Coopération de Shanghai a appelé la grande formation eurasienne à intensifier la coopération avec le Caspian Five (Iran, Russie, Azerbaïdjan, Kazakhstan...

    • Hong Kong, enfin. Les manifestants si sorossement démocratiques commencent à montrer leur vrai visage. Les gentilles manifestations pacifiques ont fait long feu, ce qui n’étonnera personne quand on sait qui est derrière. Place désormais aux armes parfois sophistiquées (comme cet élégant lanceur de grenade), au blocage d’aéroport, aux violences anti-chinoises (blessés battus, journalistes ligotés), aux drapeaux US et au soutien plein et entier de la presstituée occidentale. Bref, tous les éléments d’une « révolution colorée »...

      https://twitter.com/ChinaDaily/status/1160559229452705792

      A protester fires a US-made M320 grenade launcher at an illegal assembly in Tsim Sha Tsui amid escalating violence in Hong Kong on Sunday night.

      https://twitter.com/ChinaDaily/status/1160559229452705792

      @globaltimesnews
      reporter Fu Guohao said “I love Hong Kong” before he was carried away for medical care after he was beaten by rioters at #HongKong airport on Tue while he was performing reporting task.

      https://twitter.com/RealAlexRubi/status/1161464990055981057

      Kiddo street fascists in Hong Kong are going around beating people with poles flying the US flag & carrying pepe signs yet my mentions for the past two days have been filled with attacks from leftists for showing how the US is funding protest groups there

  • Hong Kong : des anarchistes dans la résistance au projet de loi sur l’extradition

    via Agitations Autonomes :
    https://agitationautonome.com/2019/07/10/hong-kong-des-anarchistes-dans-la-resistance-au-projet-de-loi-sur
    Publié par CrimethInc. le 22 juin 2019.

    Au lieu de simplement retweeter cette interview, nous avons décidé de la traduire intégralement, car c’est de loin le papier le plus intéressant qui ait circulé sur le mouvement jusqu’à présent (même si l’une de ses qualités est justement qu’il ne soit pas encore figé dans un « mouvement »), de la part d’un groupe qui partage nos positions.

    #photo# Notre bannière dans les marches, qui se trouve habituellement à l’avant de notre escouade de tambours. « Il n’y a pas de « bons citoyens », seulement des criminels potentiels. » Cette bannière a été faite en réponse à la propagande diffusée par les groupes politiques pro-établistes de Pékin à Hong Kong, assurant partout aux « bons citoyens » que les mesures d’extradition ne menacent pas ceux qui ont une conscience tranquille et qui se mêlent de leurs propres affaires. Photo prise par WWS du Tak Cheong Lane Collective.

    Dans cette ville, tout type d’initiative personnelle est considéré comme une solution pour gagner sa vie, une tactique dans la lutte sans pitié pour survivre. Par conséquent, l’auto-entreprenariat et l’entreprise privée sont radicalement défendus. Ce lien sinistre entre la vie et la survie atteint même le langage : pour exprimer le fait de « travailler », nous employons « 搵 食 », ce qui signifie littéralement « rechercher le repas suivant ». On comprend pourquoi les manifestants veillent toujours à ce que les actions ne portent pas préjudice aux travailleurs, comme par exemple éviter le blocage d’une route par laquelle passent les bus qui ramènent chez eux les prolétaires courbaturés.

    #Hongkong #révolte #mouvement_social

  • Central government strongly condemns flag-insulting acts by radicals in Hong Kong - Xinhua | English.news.cn
    http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2019-08/04/c_138283162.htm

    Source: Xinhua| 2019-08-04 20:19:25, Editor: huaxia - BEIJING/HONG KONG, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) — A central government spokesperson on Sunday strongly condemned the egregious acts of flinging the Chinese national flag into the sea committed by some radical protesters in Hong Kong.

    Black-clad, masked protestors removed the Chinese national flag from a flagpole in Tsim Sha Tsui and later flung the flag into the water Saturday, said the spokesperson for the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of the State Council.

    “The acts have seriously violated the National Flag Law of the People’s Republic of China and the National Flag and National Emblem Ordinance of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR),” said the spokesperson. “Their conduct has blatantly offended the state and national dignity, wantonly trampled on the bottom line of the ’one country, two systems’ principle, and greatly hurt the feelings of the entire Chinese people, including Hong Kong compatriots.”

    The spokesperson expressed strong indignation over the acts.

    “We firmly support the HKSAR police and the judicial organs in decisively enforcing the law, strictly administering justice and bringing offenders to justice as soon as possible,” said the spokesperson.

    The ugly flag-insulting acts by a very small number of radicals showed once again that they have gone far beyond the realm of free expression and slipped into the abyss of criminality, said the spokesperson, stressing the acts must be severely punished in accordance with the law, without leniency.

    The Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR also strongly condemned the illegal acts of insulting the Chinese national flag and challenging national sovereignty by some radicals in Hong Kong.

    Their acts are another public provocation against the state dignity after some radical protesters besieged the building of the liaison office and defaced the national emblem on July 21, the office said in a statement.

    Such lawless evil deeds must be severely punished in accordance with the law, the office said.

    #Chine #Hongkong #politique

  • Internetzensur - China blockiert deutsche Medien
    https://www.deutschlandfunk.de/internetzensur-china-blockiert-deutsche-medien.2907.de.html?dram:art

    Derzeit sind zahlreiche deutsche Online-Seiten von China aus nicht zu erreichen. Darunter sind beispielsweise „Spiegel Online“, die Angebote der „Tagesschau“, der „Frankfurter Allgemeinen Zeitung“, der „Süddeutschen Zeitung“ sowie des ZDF. Betroffen davon sind vor allem Menschen in China, die der deutschen Sprache mächtig sind.

    „Selbst wenn das vielleicht nur wenige Menschen betrifft, ist das natürlich auch symbolisch, dass China hier freie Presse aus dem Ausland sperrt“, sagte ARD-Korrespondent Markus Pfalzgraf im Deutschlandfunk.
    Kaum Berichte über Proteste in Hongkong

    Deutlich gravierender sei es, dass China schon länger den Zugriff auf englischsprachige Seiten verhindert, etwa von der BBC oder der „New York Times“. Das sorge auch dafür, dass es auf dem chinesischen Festland im Moment auf offiziellem Wege nur wenige Informationen über die Proteste in Hongkong gibt.

    Es sei vorstellbar, dass die chinesische Regierung die Seiten sperre, um sicherzugehen, „dass das nicht aufs Festland überschwappt, sondern dass da alles ungestört von kritischer Berichterstattung weitergehen kann“, so Pfalzgraf.

    „Kampf um die Deutungshoheit“

    Chinesische Medien versuchten, die Vorgänge in Hongkong klein zu halten. Wenn sie überhaupt berichten, warnen sie laut Pfalzgraf vor Gewalt und verurteilen die Proteste. „Das zeigt vielleicht so ein bisschen, dass hier der Kampf um die Deutungshoheit schon längst begonnen hat“, sagte Pfalzgraf. Eine offizielle Begründung für die Sperren gebe es aber nicht.

    Unterdessen sei es in Hongkong selbst nach wie vor möglich, an Informationen zu kommen und ungestört zu berichten. Im Vergleich zum chinesischen Festland gebe es dort „beinahe paradiesische Bedingungen“ mit einer blühenden Zivilgesellschaft und ausreichend Interviewpartnern, die sich offen äußern.

    #Chine #Hongkong

  • Surveillance-savvy Hong Kong protesters go digitally dark
    https://news.yahoo.com/surveillance-savvy-hong-kong-protesters-digitally-dark-003014805.html

    Hong Kong’s tech-savvy protesters are going digitally dark as they try to avoid surveillance and potential future prosecutions, disabling location tracking on their phones, buying train tickets with cash and purging their social media conversations.

    Police used rubber bullets and tear gas to break up crowds opposed to a China extradition law on Wednesday, in the worst unrest the city has witnessed in decades.

    Many of those on the streets are predominantly young and have grown up in a digital world, but they are all too aware of the dangers of surveillance and leaving online footprints.

    Ben, a masked office worker at the protests, said he feared the extradition law would have a devastating impact on freedoms.

    “Even if we’re not doing anything drastic — as simple as saying something online about China — because of such surveillance they might catch us,” the 25-year-old said.

    This week groups of demonstrators donned masks, goggles, helmets and caps — both to protect themselves against tear gas, pepper spray and rubber bullets, and also to make it harder for them to be identified.

    Many said they turned off their location tracking on their phones and beefed up their digital privacy settings before joining protests, or deleted conversations and photos on social media and messaging apps after they left the demonstrations.

    There were unusually long lines at ticket machines in the city underground metro stations as protesters used cash to buy tickets rather than tap-in with the city’s ubiquitous Octopus cards — whose movements can be more easily tracked.

    In a city where WhatsApp is usually king, protesters have embraced the encrypted messaging app Telegram in recent days, believing it offers better cyber protection and also because it allows larger groups to co-ordinate.

    On Thursday Telegram announced it had been the target of a major cyber attack, with most junk requests coming from China. The company’s CEO linked the attack to the city’s ongoing political unrest.

    Anxieties have been symbolised in a profile picture that was being used by many opponents of the bill: a wilting depiction of Hong Kong’s black-and-white bauhinia flower.

    But protesters have become increasingly nervous that using the picture online could attract attention from authorities, and have taken it down.

    “This reflects the terror Hong Kong citizens feel towards this government,” said a woman surnamed Yau, 29, who works in education.

    A protester surnamed Heung told AFP that many people immediately deleted “evidence showing you were present”.

    The demonstrators who spoke with AFP only provided their first or last names due to the subject’s sensitivity, and all wore at least masks.

    Heung, 27, had returned to the area where the protests had taken place to join the clean-up, and she put a post on Facebook calling for helpers. But she was afraid even a call for volunteers would link her to the protests.

    “Maybe I’ll delete the post tonight,” she said. “I don’t want to become one of their suspects.”

    – ’It would become like Xinjiang’ -

    While Hong Kongers have free speech and do not encounter the surveillance saturation on the mainland, sliding freedoms and a resurgent Beijing is fuelling anxieties and fears.

    Recent prosecutions of protest leaders have also used video and digital data to help win convictions.

    Bruce Lui, a senior journalism lecturer at Hong Kong Baptist University, said awareness around security has increased, particularly with China’s “all-pervasive” surveillance technology and wide use of facial recognition and other tracking methods.

    “In recent years national security has become an urgent issue for Hong Kong relating to China. Hong Kong laws may have limitations, but China only needs to use national security to surpass (them),” he said.

    The city was rattled in recent years by the disappearance of several booksellers who resurfaced in China facing charges — and the alleged rendition of billionaire businessman Xiao Jianhua in 2017.

    Critics say the extradition law, if passed, would allow these cases to be carried out openly and legally.

    “One month ago, things were still calm in Hong Kong,” said Ben, the office worker.

    “But in an instant, it has become this. Who knows if it would become like Xinjiang the day after tomorrow, because things can change so quickly,” he added, referring to an autonomous region tightly ruled by Beijing.

    In precarious times, many are holding onto core values.

    “We’re trying to do better with our privacy settings. But we still consider ourselves Hong Kong people, not Chinese, so we still think we have a right to speak out,” said Yau.

    #Chine #Hongkong

  • Toute la journée la presse a parlé de la répression à #Hongkong. Alors que notre #répression à nous est démocratique. C’est sans doute pour ça que personne ne parle du collègue #journaliste @T_Bouhafs agressé et arrêté par la #police. @LabasOfficiel @SNJ_national @gouvernementFR
    https://twitter.com/vslonskamalvaud/status/1138915717372399618

    Toute la journée la presse a parlé de la répression à #Hongkong. Alors que notre #répression à nous est démocratique. C’est sans doute pour ça que personne ne parle du collègue #journaliste @T_Bouhafs agressé et arrêté par la #police. @LabasOfficiel @SNJ_national @gouvernementFR

  • Le métro de Hong Kong, architecte du consumérisme dans Le Devoir de Montréal

    Plus de la moitié des 91 stations du réseau de métro de Hong Kong sont désormais connectées à des espaces commerciaux et résidentiels. « On est souvent forcé de passer dans un centre commercial pour aller du point A au point B », explique Stefan Al.

    Depuis le début de la construction du métro, en 1975, les habitudes des Hongkongais ont d’ailleurs radicalement changé. « Il y a 30 ans, [ils] n’étaient pas habitués aux centres commerciaux. Mais on a commencé à construire des communautés autour de ces centres [et des stations de métro] pour les inciter à y aller. Et c’est un succès », raconte M. Al.....

    « Les centres commerciaux sont des espaces où on conditionne, renchérit Stefan Al. L’air est conditionné, mais on conditionne aussi à dépenser. »

    Si tout l’effort et le temps consacré à l’architecture de la consommation était utiliser pour encourager les transports doux..

    https://www.ledevoir.com/societe/transports-urbanisme/555343/le-metro-de-hong-kong-architecte-du-consumerisme
    #consommation #aménagement #urbanisme #hongkong #capitalisme

  • #Michael_Wolf: The man who found beauty in megacities - BBC News
    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-48076865

    Hong Kong’s imposing, densely-packed tower blocks have long been a symbol of its housing crisis, which has seen tens of thousands of families in the region crammed into tiny homes.

    But photographer Michael Wolf managed to find moments of beauty in the buildings that populated his adoptive home - without shying away from the harsh realities of life for the people inside.

    Wolf died in Hong Kong on 24 April, at the age of 64.

    He was best known for his 11-year project Architecture of Density, for which he took photos of Hong Kong’s residential blocks and cropped them so tightly that they felt even more compact.

    #photographie #hongkong

  • Inside Hong Kong’s cage homes - YouTube
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLrFyjGZ9NU

    Hong Kong is the most expensive housing market in the world. It has been ranked as the least affordable housing market on Earth for eight years in a row, and the price per square foot seems to be only going up. The inflated prices are forcing Hongkongers to squeeze into unconventionally small spaces that can affect their quality of life. Tens of thousands of Hongkongers are living in spaces that range from 75 to 140 square feet. To put that in perspective, the average parking space in the US is about 150 square feet. And in the most extreme cases, Hongkongers have resorted to homes the size of a coffin. I spent some time exploring the living situation in Hong Kong to find out why housing has become so expensive and spaces so tight. To understand how Hong Kong’s housing market turned out this way and see how it’s affecting people’s lives, watch the final episode of Borders Hong Kong.

    #logement #hongkong

    Merci @fil !

  • Pipe dreams: can ’nano apartments’ solve Hong Kong’s housing crisis? | Cities | The Guardian

    https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2018/may/21/nano-apartments-hong-kong-housing-crisis

    Pipe dreams: can ’nano apartments’ solve Hong Kong’s housing crisis?

    The city with the world’s tiniest and costliest living spaces may soon convert drainpipes into homes. The aim is to get young people on the property ladder – but how small is too small?

    #urban_matter #hongkong #habitat #habita_urbain

  • Is #Taiwan a Country? What About #Tibet? China Says They Aren’t—and Wants Foreign Companies to Fall in Line · Global Voices
    https://globalvoices.org/2018/01/17/is-taiwan-a-country-what-about-tibet-china-says-they-arent-and-wants-f

    Despite what people may say, #Hong_Kong (#Hongkong), #Macau, Taiwan and Tibet are not countries. At least not in the eyes of mainland China.

    This week, a smattering of multinational corporations publicly apologized for listing Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and Tibet as countries on their websites, at the behest of Chinese authorities.

    The wave of apologies from JW Marriott Hotels, Zara, Delta Airlines and Medtronic, among others, was sparked by a January 9 email questionnaire sent by Marriott to its Chinese members, in which the four territories were listed separately from China in one of the questions about residence.

    #chine #territoires #différends_frontaliers #frontières

  • As Singapore’s Changi airport soars, is HK$141 billion upgrade too little too late for Hong Kong? | South China Morning Post

    http://www.scmp.com/news/hong-kong/economy/article/2118143/singapores-changi-airport-soars-hk141-billion-upgrade-case

    Fast and free Wi-fi, clear directional signs and a fast train connection to the city are hallmarks of Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA), say travellers.

    Indeed, HKIA has received mostly effusive praise since it opened in July 1998. It took seven years to construct the modern, glass-roofed facility, which at the time took the city right to the forefront of regional aviation.

    But now, the accolades are in decline.

    The two-terminal, two-runway airport is lagging its arch-rival, Singapore’s Changi Airport, which on Tuesday launched its hi-tech HK$5.6 billion (US$723 million) fourth terminal.

    #aéroport #transport_aérien #asie #hongkong #dfs

  • This Fascinating City Within Hong Kong Was Lawless For Decades
    http://www.visualcapitalist.com/kowloon-walled-city

    There are very few places on Earth that remain ungoverned, and even the tiniest islands and city-states tend to have rules in place for things like taxation and citizenship.

    Government control is an established reality for most of the world, but what would happen if a neighborhood in your city suddenly became a lawless free-for-all? What type of industries would emerge, and how would people cooperate within that environment to ensure basic services continued to operate?

    One example from recent history sheds light on just how such a situation could work: Kowloon Walled City.
    Kowloon Walled City

    Today’s infographic is a fantastic editorial illustration from South China Morning Post from 2013 that takes a detailed look at the inner workings of Kowloon Walled City (KWC).

    Often described as one of the most remarkable social anomalies in recent history, this bizarre enclave was more dense than any other urban area on the face of the planet.

  • Hongkong ǀ Gefährliche Handlungen — der Freitag
    https://www.freitag.de/autoren/der-freitag/gefaehrliche-handlungen

    Hongkong Seit 1997 ist die Metropole chinesische Sonderverwaltungszone – in der Peking verstärkt gegen Verleger vorgeht
    Gefährliche Handlungen

    Zu Besuch in Mong Kok, dem chinesischsten Viertel der 7,3 Millionen-Einwohner-Stadt Hongkong: tagsüber ein Bild aus heruntergekommenen Mietshäusern vor den Glasfassaden nagelneuer Bürotürme. Nachts verschwindet alles hinter dem grellen Lichtermeer aus Millionen LED-Leuchtreklamen. Zwischen Modeboutiquen, Handyshops und Imbissbuden, zwischen parkenden Lastwagen, hupenden Taxis, piependen Ampeln, vor denen sich Menschen drängen, führt ein schmaler, unscheinbarer Hauseingang in der Sai Yeung Choi Street hinauf in den siebten Stock. Dort liegt Hong Kong Reader, einer von etwa 50 unabhängigen Buchläden der Stadt. Ein kleines Refugium der Literatur, der „Freiheit des Worts“, wie es Buchhändler Daniel Lee nennt.

    Bei Hong Kong Reader sieht es aus wie in einem alternativen Buchladen der 70er Jahre. Dicht an dicht stehen die Regale im etwa 50 Quadratmeter großen Raum. Es gibt Kaffee für die Besucher. An einer Stirnseite Werke von Camus bis Nietzsche, ein wenig Belletristik, Geografie, Geschichte. Gegenüber lange Reihen chinesischer Titel. Dazwischen Secondhandbücher. Kunden blättern still in dem, was sie interessiert. Kater Ai Weiwei schaut aus dem Fenster.

    Daniel Lee, 35, hat einen Universitätsabschluss in Philosophie. Mit zwei Kommilitonen eröffnete er vor neun Jahren Hong Kong Reader. „Wir wollten nach dem Studium etwas Eigenständiges machen, Menschen treffen, mit denen wir geistesverwandt sind.“ Facebook und Google lassen sich in Hongkong problemlos aufrufen – Seiten, die in Festlandchina nicht verfügbar sind. „Hongkong ist von der großen chinesischen Firewall ausgenommen“, sagt Lee. Gleichzeitig würden aber Verleger verhaftet, nicht durch Hongkongs Behörden, sondern auf Druck der KCP, der Kommunistischen Partei Chinas.
    Spurlos verschwunden

    Fast 20 Jahre nach der Rückkehr Hongkongs ins Reich der Mitte werde es für seine Bewohner politisch immer enger, sagt der Geisteswissenschaftler. Er persönlich fühle bislang keine direkte Bedrohung. Auch nicht nach den Entführungen von Lee Bo, Lam Wing-kee und einigen anderen Buchhändlern, die zwischen Oktober und Dezember 2015 zunächst spurlos verschwanden. Schnell wurde klar, dass man sie genötigt hatte, nach Festlandchina einzureisen – wo sie in Arrest kamen. In Hongkong demonstrierten Tausende gegen dieses Vorgehen Pekings. Einer der Festgenommenen, Lam Wing-kee, berichetete nach seiner Freilassung im Sommer 2016, was ihm während der Internierung widerfahren war: Isolation, Verhöre, Androhung von weiterer Haft, und das über Monate. „Nach meinem Verständnis wurden diese Männer gekidnappt, weil sie nicht nur Bücher verkaufen, sondern auch verlegen“, sagt Lee. „Sie bringen Bücher über chinesische Politik heraus, über parteiinterne Auseinandersetzungen in Peking.“ Und das seien sehr sensible Themen.

    Zum Programm seines Ladens sagt er: „Die meisten Bücher verkaufen wir aus einem Genre, das wir selbst entwickelt haben: Hongkong-Studien. Das umfasst Politik, Gesellschaft, Geschichte und Ähnliches. Die Bestseller befassen sich mit unserer sozialen Bewegung, vor allem dem ,Umbrella Movement‘.“ Diese Pro-Demokratie-Bewegung, die den Regenschirm als Widerstandssymbol gewählt hat, brachte seit Ende 2014 für mehrere Wochen Zehntausende auf die Straßen, auch im Mong-Kok-Viertel, in dem Lees Buchandlung liegt. Vor allem Studenten protestieren gegen die Einschränkung von Bürgerrechten, die der Nationale Volkskongress in Peking beschlossen hat. Die stete Aushöhlung der Teilautonomie Hongkongs ist im Gange. „Die Menschen sind alarmiert“, sagt Lee.

    Der politische Druck wächst. Inzwischen stellen sogenannte Pro-Peking-Parteien mehr als die Hälfte der Parlamentarier des Legislativrats, der gesetzgebenden Versammlung Hongkongs. Im November 2016 wurde zwei frei gewählten Vertretern aus dem Umbrella Movement auf Intervention Pekings der Parlamentarierstatus aberkannt. Der Volkskongress legte dazu ein Gesetz in seinem Sinn aus, das 1997 als „Basic Law“ beschlossen worden war – auch um der Stadt die Teilautonomie von China zu sichern, nach dem Prinzip: ein Land, zwei Systeme. „Dieser Grundsatz ist jetzt mausetot“, sagt Lee ernüchtert. In Justizfragen behalte sich Peking das alleinige Entscheidungsrecht vor. „Die Unabhängigkeit unserer Gerichtsbarkeit ist vorbei.“

    Es ist ein breit angelegtes, sukzessives Vorgehen der Pekinger Führung, dessen Folgen für Hongkong und seine Bewohner langsam immer deutlicher zutage treten: Da sind die Übernahmen von Wirtschaftsbetrieben, Presse, Radio und TV. Da ist die schleichende Entmündigung der Legislative, da sind die offenen Repressionen gegen prodemokratische Bewegungen. Und eben: die Inhaftierung unliebsamer Verleger.

    Die Einflussnahme erfolgt auch über die Sprache. In Hongkong wird Kantonesisch gesprochen, verkürzt gesagt ein Dialekt des Hochchinesischen. In Festlandchina spricht man vorwiegend Mandarin, eine stark vereinfachte Form des Hochchinesischen. Es wurde einst von den Kommunisten in der Volksrepublik eingeführt, um das Analphabetentum zu bekämpfen. Im vorkommunistischen China war die offizielle Schriftsprache noch das komplexere Hochchinesisch, für alle Chinesen.

    Bis heute erscheinen die meisten Bücher, die in Honkong gedruckt werden, in hochchinesischer Sprache, nicht im abgespeckten kommunistischen Mandarin. Literatur aus Hongkong ist daher sofort zu identifizieren. Wer sie nach China einführt, bekomme mitunter Probleme, sagt Lee. „Wenn man bestimmte Bücher oder einfach nur zu viele, die in traditionellen chinesischen Schriftzeichen geschrieben sind, aus Hongkong mit nach Festlandchina nimmt, riskiert man, festgenommen zu werden und im Gefängnis zu landen. Denn Festlandchina erlaubt eigentlich keine Einfuhr von Büchern, die nicht dort veröffentlicht wurden.“ Umgekehrt gibt es Bestrebungen, das Mandarin in Honkong stärker zu verbeiten. „Traditionell wird hier in den Schulen auf Kantonesisch unterrichtet. Inzwischen sind aber viele TV-Kanäle schon zu Mandarin und dessen stark vereinfachten Schriftzeichen gewechselt“, sagt Lee.
    Auswandern als Option

    Aus seiner Sicht wird es schwer für Hongkong, seine Teilautonomie zu erhalten, solange es Teil des großen Chinas ist. In den vergangenen zwei Jahren seien die Aussichten deutlich düsterer geworden, vor allem seit gewählten Vertretern unerwünschter politischer Bewegungen wie eben des Umbrella Movement der Zugang zum Hongkonger Parlament verwehrt werde.

    Die Hoffnungen ruhten jetzt ganz auf den Menschen in Hongkong, sagt Lee. Wenn sie bereit seien, aktiv für ihre Freiheit und Autonomie einzutreten, dann gebe es vielleicht eine Chance gegen den Machtapparat der Kommunistischen Partei in Peking. Die Studenten hätten mit ihren 2014 aufgenommenen Protesten den Anfang gemacht. Zuletzt demonstrierten im November dieses Jahres Hongkonger Anwälte gegen die Aushöhlung beziehungsweise Fehlauslegung des Basic Law. Und auch dass der für Monate inhaftierte Buchhändler Lam Wing-kee seinen Arrest öffentlich machte, habe dazu geführt, dass viele Hongkonger nun endlich aufwachten.

    „Realistischerweise muss man sagen, dass es nicht einfach wird. Aber wir werden kämpfen müssen, das ist das Einzige, was wir tun können.“ Er wisse von einigen Menschen, die längst daran dächten auszuwandern. Doch er selbst will diesen Ort, an dem er so lange gelebt hat, nicht aufgeben: „Warum soll ich gehen, warum geht nicht ihr ?“

    Dieser Beitrag erschien in Ausgabe 50/16.

    #Hongkong #Chine #politique #littérature

  • Rare Maps Show Life in Hong Kong’s Vice-Filled ’Walled City’ - CityLab
    http://www.citylab.com/design/2014/11/rare-maps-show-life-in-hong-kongs-vice-filled-walled-city/382415

    Back in the day, around 33,000 people lived in the webbed high-rises, making the city one of the most densely populated places in the world. To outsiders, it was a hotbed of vice and violence that most refused to enter—even after the walls came down in the mid 20th century.

    #Kowloon #cartographie_verticale #urban_matter #bidonvilles #Hongkong