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Web-only Exclusives
November 30, 2000

From Our Correspondent: Hirohito and the War
A conversation with biographer Herbert Bix

From Our Correspondent: A Rough Road Ahead
Bad news for the Philippines - and some others

From Our Correspondent: Making Enemies
Indonesia needs friends. So why is it picking fights?

Asiaweek Time Asia Now Asiaweek story

Week of December 15, 1995

DEAF JUSTICE

For the first time, Hong Kong's High Court was to have heard a case conducted entirely in Cantonese. Until now, Eng-lish has been used, with translators. The landmark trial hit a snag early on: the elderly woman speaks only Mandarin and is deaf. She is accusing three of her children of cheating her out of $13,000; no decision yet.


Week of December 8, 1995

SPENDING BIG

Hong Kong is heading for its first full-year trade deficit in 11 years. With consumer demand depressed for the last eight months, the government blames large infra-structure projects for the rise in imports. For 1995, up to October, the deficit stands at $1.03 billion. Domestic exports were the big loss leaders, falling by 2.6 %.

Other news from Hong Kong this week:

  • Property: A developer looks for life outside Hong Kong

Week of December 1, 1995

News from Hong Kong this week:

  • Cash Flow: Infrastructure czar Gordon Wu faces a crunch
  • APEC: Will Osaka's compromise open a new approach?

Week of November 24, 1995

FISH STORY

For about $11,600 a group of well intentioned admirers outbid competing diners to save the life of a 172 kilogram garoupa (Promicrops lanceolatus) that had been patiently awaiting its fate in a Hong Kong restaurant fish tank. Thinking the fish might be a dragon king, the group released him back into the sea after holding a suitable ceremony.


Week of November 17, 1995

NO NEED

There is no need to report to the U.N. on human rights in Hong Kong after the territory returns to its control in 1997, China said. Beijing has not signed the international pact requiring the reports to be made. The U.N. says the reporting requirement still applies, a claim welcomed by Hong Kong human rights activists and the government.


Week of November 10, 1995

NO PASSPORTS

The 7,000 Indians living in Hong Kong won't be granted full British passports before China resumes sovereignty over the territory. The British government again rejected an appeal from Hong Kong's Governor Chris Patten to allow them to resettle in Britain, even though they could be made stateless after the mid-1997 handover.


Week of November 3, 1995

VIEWING PLEASURE

Playboy Enterprises and Wharf Cable plan to start co-producing adult television programs with Asian actors because their existing pay-per-view TV shows are so popular in Hong Kong, the companies announced. Asia figures prominently in Playboy's expansion plans, said CEO Christie Hefner.


Week of October 27, 1995

PASSPORT ON SHOW

Hong Kong people were given a first glimpse of the passport that most of them will start using after 1997. The dark blue passport of the Special Administrative Region was unveiled in Beijing. Long-time residents of Hong Kong who are not ethnic Chinese will not be eligible for the new document, a Chinese official said.


Week of October 20, 1995

STILL TOP CITY

Hong Kong was tipped to consolidate its lead as a regional and international financial hub after it shakes off the uncertainties over its return to China in 1997. A report by the Merrill Lynch investment house, released in Singapore, said the challenges posed by the end of British administration would be part of Hong Kong's "driving force."

Other news from Hong Kong this week:

  • Property: It's a new world for tycoon Henry Cheng

Week of September 15, 1995

NEW SHOES

Donald Tsang, who on Sept. 1 became the first ethnic Chinese to serve as Hong Kong's financial secretary in more than 150 years of British rule, has inherited a tough job from former boss Hamish Macleod. The government has revised its 1995 GDP forecast down to 5% after the jobless rate hit a 12-year high in July. Faced with the slowdown, Tsang called for "patience."


Week of September 8, 1995

TYCOON IN TROUBLE

Yu Pun-hoi, who four years ago bought Ming Pao, a respected Chinese daily, in hopes of becoming a media magnate now seems about to sell his share. The Hong Kong Stock Exchange recently suspended trading in Ming Pao shares after reports that Yu was speaking with a yet unnamed buyer. Unprofitable projects, such as a 24-hour Chinese news service, sapped the firm's financial strength.


Week of September 1, 1995

HOMECOMING

A visit home would not ordinarily raise eyebrows in Hong Kong. Except if that home happens to be China. Chief Secretary Anson Chan Fang On Sang will go to her native province Anhui to attend a premiere of a TV show about her grandfather, a war hero. In July, Chan went secretly to Beijing to meet senior Chinese officials. This time, she says, her trip is strictly personal.

Other news from Hong Kong this week


Week of August 25, 1995

CONTEST

Looking at the candidates' list for Hong Kong's September Legislative Council elections is like reading tea leaves to find out the future. But that hardly stops the analysts. Some predict a good showing by pro-Beijing nominees as jitters about the territory's economic health sway voters. Others see pro-democracy parties staying strong. Over 130 hopefuls are jousting for 60 seats.


Week of August 18, 1995

HOW IT CRUMBLES

Tycoon Li Ka Shing's Cheung Kong Holdings joined a controversial scheme to redevelop Hong Kong's oldest walled village. The company bought 40% of the units in the 600-year-old Wong Tai Sin community, slated to become a commercial development under a government-led program. Local activists want the site preserved as part of the territory's vanishing heritage.

Other news from Hong Kong this week:

  • Cover : High-tech advances render the office obsolete
  • Cybercafe: A great place to get wired

Week of August 11, 1995

UP WITH CLEAN AIR

Air pollution at the street level in Hong Kong may be 10 times worse than estimated by officials taking samples on rooftops several stories in the air, according to a newspaper report. "No one walks five stories above the street," said one researcher. The government admitted the problem but said street-level monitoring in some places required testing sites that were too expensive to buy or rent.

Other news from Hong Kong this week


Week of July 28, 1995

SAFETY FIRST

China says it wants more assurances about the safety of the Daya Bay nuclear power station near Hong Kong before it signs a contract with the French to build another plant nearby. One unit has been shut down for seven months because it failed safety tests. Officials in Beijing initialed a contract July 14 but are withholding final agreement until safety is assured.

Other news from Hong Kong this week


Week of July 21, 1995

'NO CONFIDENCE'

Gov. Chris Patten cannot be removed by the territorial legislature, but that hasn't stopped the Democrats from tabling a "no confidence motion." Though sure to be defeated, it is the first time that a Hong Kong governor has come under such censure. The Democrats, led by Martin Lee, maintain that Britain sold out in compromising with China on the Court of Final Appeal.


Week of July 14, 1995

KEEP IN TOUCH

Exactly two years before Hong Kong reverts to China, Chief Secretary Anson Chan met with China's Foreign Minister Qian Qichen in Beijing. It was the highest-level meeting in two years. Chan, the first Chinese to hold the territory's No. 2 position, said they discussed the future of the civil service and the choice of Hong Kong's post-1997 chief executive.

Other news from Hong Kong this week


Week of July 07, 1995

FRIENDLY SKIES?

Hong Kong and Australia averted a commercial air war when they agreed to reconfigure agreements governing the operations of each other's air carriers. A dispute had arisen over whether Australia's Qantas Airways was carrying more Asian traffic than allowed. Under the agreement, the two will review all air agreements between them by the end of the year.


Week of June 30, 1995

HANGOVER

A beer war that has seen the number of brands available in Hong Kong multiply is taking its toll on the city's breweries. San Miguel, based in the Philippines, is laying off nearly 100 workers, 15% of its Hong Kong payroll. Tax changes have made foreign brands more competitive, and analysts say the market share of Hong Kong-brewed San Mig and Carlsberg have fallen.


Week of June 23, 1995

FERRY HEIST

Pirates threatening to blow up a ferry full of passengers stole $1.3 million in cash being transferred from Macau to Hong Kong and escaped in a speed boat. The brazen, midday robbers were being hunted by a joint police operation involving Hong Kong, Macau and mainland Chinese police. The pirates threatened to blow up the ferry with grenades if they didn't escape successfully.

Other news from Hong Kong this week


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