Prospects for Democracy and Press Freedom in Hong Kong

385 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510 | Thursday, April 3, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Transcript (PDF) (Text)

Under China’s “one country, two systems” policy, Hong Kong residents enjoy greater freedom and autonomy than people in mainland China, including freedoms of speech, press, and religion.  China has stated it intends to allow Hong Kong residents to elect their Chief Executive by universal suffrage for the first time in 2017 and to elect Hong Kong’s Legislative Council by universal suffrage in 2020.  As Hong Kong’s government contemplates electoral reform in the run-up to the 2017 election, concerns are growing that China’s central government will attempt to control the election by allowing only pro-Beijing candidates to run for Chief Executive. Concerns over press freedom have also grown in the wake of several incidents in which journalists have been violently attacked or fired.

The roundtable will feature two prominent advocates for Hong Kong democracy, Martin Lee and Anson Chan, who will examine the prospects for Hong Kong’s democratic development. 

The roundtable will also be webcast live here.


Opening Statements: 

Senator Sherrod Brown, Chairman


Statement Submitted for the Record

Representative Christopher Smith, Cochairman


Martin Lee, Barrister, founding Chairman of the Democratic Party of Hong Kong, former Member of the Drafting Committee for the Basic Law, and former Member of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong (1985-2008).    

Anson Chan, Former Chief Secretary for Administration of Hong Kong, former Member of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong (2007-2008), and Convener of Hong Kong 2020, a political group working toward achieving universal suffrage in the 2017 election for Chief Executive and 2020 Legislative Council elections.