A new and modernized China has been the vision of countless scholars, statesmen, and patriots since the late 19th Century. But the 20th Century was a sobering experience for China in its search for the path to modernization. Alan Leong explored how close the Chinese are to that vision; where China is heading as a nation and where China stands in the international community; and what the role of Hong Kong is in the 21st Century in China’s modernization.
Alan Leong is a Legislative Councilor of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), representing Kowloon East. In March 2007 he ran against Donald Tsang, the incumbent Chief Executive of the HKSAR, in the first contested Chief Executive Election held since the reversion of sovereignty to China in 1997. Prior to this, Leong had a successful career as a barrister in private practice, and was the first Senior Counsel appointed after the establishment of the HKSAR. He served as Chairman of the Hong Kong Bar Association from 2001 to 2003. As Chairman of the Committee on Mainland Relations and Practice, he negotiated for the participation of Hong Kong barristers in China’s legal services after China acceded to the World Trade Organization. Leong is also a founding member of the Civic Party, which enjoys substantial support from the professional sector, and is widely seen by the Hong Kong public as a strong leader in the universal suffrage movement.
Hong Kong’s residents are re-redefining their relationship with China since sovereignty over the city was returned to China. Social, economic, and political differences between Hong Kong and the Mainland are a subject of serious contemplation by the residents of Hong Kong. A transcript of a presentation on this topic is available.