Chinas legislature recently approved imposing a new national security law on Hong Kong that will jeopardize its freedoms. If the United State truly wants to help Hong Kongers, and punish Chinas communist government, tariffs are not the answer. Instead, it should offer Hong Kongs residents asylum visas.
The new law would further erode the civil liberties that Hong Kong protesters have been fighting to preserve in recent years. As journalist-politician Claudia Mo, a member of the Hong Kong Legislative Council, stated, Theyve practically taken away our soul. Our soul weve been treasuring all these years, the rule of law, human rights, theyre taking away all the core values weve come to know. From now on, Hong Kong is nothing but just another mainland Chinese city.
President Donald Trump agrees, stating Chinas latest incursion... makes clear that Hong Kong is no longer sufficiently autonomous to warrant the special treatment that we have afforded the territory. To back up his words, the President indicated the administration planned to scrap the policies exempting Hong Kong from tariffs and other export controls the United States imposes on China.
Unfortunately, this probably will have little impact. When the United Kingdom ceded control of the territory to China in 1997, Hong Kongs economy comprised more than a quarter of Chinas entire economy. Punishing Hong Kong at that time would have been a significant blow to the communist regime in Beijing.