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.
Brian C. H. Fong is Assistant Professor in the Department of Asian and Policy Studies, Hong Kong Institute of Education.