Lord Patten, the last governor of Hong Kong said that it was “demeaning” and delusional for the UK not to call out China’s behavior over trade fears.
Lord Patten, now Oxford University’s chancellor, stated that China was a threat to “our ability to address global issues like climate change.”
After Rishi Sunak appeared to soften its approach to China in November, he criticised Rishi Sonak and said that the UK should “hold up to Beijing with robust pragmatism”.
“A phrase that belongs in what I call the ‘mush’ school of diplomacy,” Lord Patten stated at the UK- Hong Kong Summit. This summit brought together Hong Kongers who fled their homelands to seek asylum in the UK.
He stated that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), a threat to the UK’s long-term security values, institutions and values, is the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). This can be seen in their recent treatment of Hong Kong.
He told Sky News Hong Kong that totalitarianism and dictatorships don’t last forever.
He said, “When it falls apart, it disappears very quickly.”
Lord Patten was responsible for the handover of Hong Kong to China from the UK in 1997. This was part of an agreement that Hong Kong would be autonomous with high levels of autonomy that would not change over 50 years.
China declared the treaty was void in 2014. Democracy and autonomy in Hong Kong were rapidly undermining. A national security law was enacted in 2020, which saw activists and politicians being jailed.
Lord Patten stated that the British government is doing much to condemn Hong Kong.
He also praised BNO’s passport scheme, which allows those who have a British passport to enter the UK and stay there.
He said that they could do more, particularly with regard to Jimmy Lai, a British citizen and Hong Kong media mogul, who was jailed for lighting the candle at Tiananmen Square’s vigil. His lawyers also claim that other charges are untrue.
China has been accused by the government of being more soft than necessary because it is worried about losing trade or failing to get a good post-Brexit trade agreement with Beijing.
Sky News’ Lord Patten said that the CCP would only allow you to do business if they do what you want, but not if you look at Australia.
They were in the doghouse, and trade exports to China from Australia have increased again due to China’s need for barley and [iron] ore.
“It stopped buying wine, but the wine was sold elsewhere as exports are fungible.
“I don’t think we should buy the idea that trade with China requires us to do what the Communist Party wills.
“We don’t behave like that with anyone else – if you want trade with Nigeria, don’t assume you can’t say anything the presidents of Nigeria won’t agree with.
“So, we shouldn’t also do that with China. It is demeaning and delusional.
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‘China wants a way to keep corrupt earnings from HK’
This peer has been extremely critical of China over the past few years. He said that Beijing’s breach of its promises about Hong Kong and its promise not to send its military to South China Sea shows that the CCP – President Xi Jinping – cannot be trusted.
He stated that Hong Kong was the real problem and represented all the things that Xi Jinping’s colleagues wanted to eradicate in China.
“Stamp out any things that you identify with Hong Kong, while still allowing them to launder corrupt earnings through Hong Kong. Cash is king!”
“Being in China’s doghouse does not matter”
Lord Patten was last in Hong Kong in 2016, “a place that I love and greatly admire”, he stated. However, he doesn’t believe he can safely return to the city “while it is run by the CCP with its quisling administration”.
Last governor urged Hong Kongers living in the UK to remind their British counterparts of the importance and political responsibilities they have to Hong Kong.
He suggested that they tell their MPs to stand up for those “who are your and my friends who are in prison because they believe the same things as us” as well as human rights violations by Beijing.
Lord Patten said that some people suggested that if you mentioned those things, it would so annoy Chinese communists they will put you in the doghouse.”
“If you don’t do these things, you should be in a doghouse.”