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Cambodians: Hong Kong's role more important internationally 15 years after return

(Xinhua)

10:21, July 02, 2012

PHNOM PENH, July 1 (Xinhua) -- The Hong Kong's return to the People's Republic of China 15 years ago has brought the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region with stronger economic development and greater prestige on the international arena, said Cambodian academics and officials.

"Hong Kong's role on the international stage is stronger"and "one country, two systems" really works well, said Dr. Chheang Vannarith, executive director of the Cambodian Institute for Peace and Cooperation, in an interview with Xinhua.

He said Hong Kong's return to China has produced very positive outcomes in terms of economic integration, people to people connectivity and institutional harmonization.

"The people of Hong Kong should be proud to be part of China," he said, adding, "Cultural identity has been further strengthened and economic status has been upgraded for the Hong Kong people."

Dr. Vannarith said Cambodia and other Southeast Asian nations alike want to see more economic and cultural interaction with Hong Kong, a sea-based logistic connecting point in the region.

Lao Mong Hay, a senior researcher with the Asian Human Rights Commission and a well-known political analyst in Cambodia, said that in terms of economic development, Hong Kong has remained, and continues to remain, one of the world's top financial and business centers.

Phay Siphan, spokesman for Cambodia's Council of Ministers, said during the past 15 years, he observed that Hong Kong has successfully carried out the "one country, two systems" policy and maintained prosperity and stability.

"The reunification between Hong Kong and the motherland since 1997 has reflected unity and solidarity among Chinese people," he told Xinhua on Saturday. "Before 1997, Hong Kong was the exclusive market for Britain, but now Hong Kong is not only the choice for Chinese people, but for the world. Hong Kong has more economic freedom than New York, London or Europe."

As Hong Kong is the world's financial and business hub and China is the world's second largest economy, under the policy support from China's central government, Hong Kong's economy would be stronger, he said.

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