‘Luo Huining’s lack of HK experience is a strength’
Luo Huining, a former Communist Party secretary of Shanxi province, took over the reins as director on Monday, with his predecessor Wang Zhimin removed from the post following the months of political unrest in the city.
“So it is quite possible that Beijing wants someone with a good political status in China as well as having a lot of experience in tackling political conflicts to come over to Hong Kong to deal with the Hong Kong situation,” he said.
London’s appointment of Chris Patten as the last governor of Hong Kong before the handover shows experience of the city’s affairs isn’t a must, Lau said.
“Chris Patten did not have any experience in Hong Kong but he was a very good politician. So I think in Luo Huining’s case, being a very successful politician, he should be quite qualified to deal with Hong Kong, especially if he has a very good mastery of Beijing‘s new policy towards Hong Kong.”
Lau said Luo’s job won’t necessarily be to try to resolve the territory’s political crisis, but to make sure that Beijing is in control of the situation and to “forestall any further intrusion from external forces”.
He also told RTHK’s Janice Wong that Wang’s departure does not signal that Chief Executive Carrie Lam will soon be sacked as well.
Lau said he expects the central government to try to win more support from neutral political forces in the city, or at least those who are not hostile towards Beijing.
He said the central government’s new policy on Hong Kong would also involve work to further integrate the SAR’s economy with the mainland’s, and the Greater Bay Area’s in particular.