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19 Loy. L.A. Int'l & Comp. L.J. 263 (1996-1997)
The Rule of Law in Hong Kong after 1997

handle is hein.journals/loyint19 and id is 273 raw text is: 




  The Rule of Law in Hong Kong After
                              1997

                       JOHN MCDERMOTT *


                       I. INTRODUcTION
     On July 1, 1997, jurisdiction- over Hong Kong will pass from
Great Britain, which has ruled Hong Kong for over 150 years, to
the People's Republic of China (PRC). As that date approaches,
anxiety over Hong Kong's future as a financial and legal center
increases. In an effort to ameliorate this growing anxiety, Daniel
Fung, the first Chinese Solicitor General of Hong Kong,1
embarked on a month-long speaking tour in the United States. On
February 8, 1996, he stopped at Loyola Law School, where he was
the featured speaker at a conference organized by Loyola
Marymount University's Center for Asian Business.
     Although Hong Kong has never been a democracy, it has
enjoyed a legal system as reliable as any other democratic system
in the world. Indeed, Mr. Fung considers Hong Kong's legal
system to be Britain's greatest and most treasured legacy to Hong
Kong.2    When the colony is transferred back to the PRC's
jurisdiction in a few months, a crucial question concerns the future


    • Professor of Law, Loyola Law School. I was asked to respond to Daniel Fung's
speech. This Article summarizes the concerns expressed in my response. The views ex-
pressed in this Article are not necessarily the views of Loyola Law School, Loyola Mary-
mount University, or any other sponsors of the conference held on February 8, 1996 at
Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.
    1. Mr. Fung, as Solicitor General of Hong Kong is responsible for overseeing the
legal policy of the Hong Kong government until it becomes a part of the PRC later this
year. Mr. Fung spent 18 years in private practice before becoming solicitor general in
1994. He. was the first Hong Kong Chinese to hold the position. See Brian Cummings,
Hong Kong Will Preserve Its Legal Heritage, CHI. DAILY L. BULL., Feb. 7, 1996, at 3. It
is unclear whether he will continue to serve as Solicitor General after July 1, 1997.
   2. Id

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