1st Edition

Hong Kong’s Governance Under Chinese Sovereignty The Failure of the State-Business Alliance after 1997

By Brian C. H. Fong Copyright 2015
    278 Pages 19 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    294 Pages 19 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    As a hybrid regime, Hong Kong has been governed by a state-business alliance since the colonial era. However, since the handover in 1997, the transformation of Hong Kong’s political and socio-economic environment has eroded the conditions that supported a viable state-business alliance. This state-business alliance, which was once a solution for Hong Kong’s governance, has now become a political burden, rather than a political asset, to the post-colonial Hong Kong state.

    This book presents a critical re-examination of the post-1997 governance crisis in Hong Kong under the Tung Chee-hwa and Donald Tsang administrations. It shows that the state-business alliance has failed to function as an organizational machinery for supporting the post-colonial state, and has also served to generate new governance problems. Drawing upon contemporary theories on hybrid regimes and state capacity, this book looks beyond the existing opposition-centered explanations of Hong Kong’s governance crisis. By establishing the causal relationship between the failure of the state-business alliance and the governance crisis facing the post-colonial state, Brian C. H. Fong broadens our understanding of the governance problems and political confrontations in post-colonial Hong Kong. In turn, he posits that although the state-business alliance worked effectively for the colonial state in the past, it is now a major problem for the post-colonial state, and suggests that Hong Kong needs a realignment of a new governing coalition.

    Hong Kong’s Governance under Chinese Sovereignty will enrich and broaden the existing literature on Hong Kong’s public governance whilst casting new light on the territory’s political developments. As such, it will be welcomed by students and scholars interested in Chinese politics, Hong Kong politics, and governance.

    Part I: Governance Under Hybrid Regimes: The Case of Hong Kong 1. Governance Crisis in Post-1997 Hong Kong: In Search of A New Theoretical Explanation 2. Governance and the State: Revisiting the Concepts and Theories of State Capacity Part II: The Legacy of State-business Alliance in Hong Kong: From Colonial Time to Transitional Period 3. Reinterpreting Governance and State Capacity in Colonial Time: The Colonial State-business Alliance 4. The Crafting of the Post-1997 State-business Alliance: Beijing’s Governing Strategy After 1997 Part III Missing Link Between State, Business and Society: The Growing Erosion of the Intermediary Role of Business Elites in Post-1997 Hong Kong 5. The Missing Link Between State and Business: The Fragmentation of Agents of Business Interests 6. The Widening Gap Between State and Society: The Growing Disconnection of Business Sector from Local Community Part IV: Uneasy Partnership Between State and Business: The Rising Power Leverages of Business Sector in Post-1997 Hong Kong 7. Institutionalization of Business Power Under the HKSAR Political System: Chief Executive Election Committee and Functional Constituencies 8. Business Sector’s Direct Access to the Sovereign State: The Close Partnership between Beijing and the Local Capitalists Part V: Rethinking Hong Kong’s Governance Under Chinese Sovereignty: From Opposition-Centered Explanation to A Critical Analysis of Governing Coalition Building 9. Conclusion: Rethinking the Governance Crisis in Post-1997 Hong Kong 10. Epilogue: Hong Kong’s Governance In the Aftermath of 2012 Chief Executive Election: Governing Coalition Built on Sands


    Brian C. H. Fong is Associate Director at the Academy of Hong Kong Studies, The Education University of Hong Kong.


    "Fong’s book makes a considerable contribution to our understanding of the perplexing Hong Kong political environment. His analysis is based on painstaking research of all the data sources that count: from the local media to official statistics and from polling data to mainland pronouncements. The result is a treasure trove of information which
    will make life considerably easier for serious students of Hong Kong politics." - Leo F. Goodstadt, University of Hong Kong, China Information 29(3)