Could part of Ireland become the new Hong Kong?

The British Government recently announced a new entry path for up to 3 million “Hong Kongers” that have a British National Overseas passport. They along with family members can move to the UK to work and study for 5 years, prior to applying for citizenship.

A Hong Kong realtor Ivan Ko, is looking for a new “Hong Kong” with it’s own tax laws and regulations now that China has put its National Security laws on the city. Ireland is being looked closely at as a possible solution.

Although the Republic of Ireland is not part of the UK, it has had special economic zones in the past. The Shannon Free Trade Zone and the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in Dublin.

With the expected mass exodus of Hong Kongers, Ireland is a possibility for an international charter city as China tightens it’s grasp on Hong Kong.

The new law’s that China has imposed include:

  • Crimes of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces are punishable by a maximum sentence of life in prison
  • Damaging public transport facilities can be considered terrorism
  • Those found guilty will not be allowed to stand for public office
  • Companies can be fined if convicted under the law
  • Beijing will establish a new security office in Hong Kong, with its own law enforcement personnel – neither of which would come under the local authority’s jurisdiction
  • This office can send some cases to be tried in mainland China – but Beijing has said it will only have that power over a “tiny number” of cases
  • In addition, Hong Kong will have to establish its own national security commission to enforce the laws, with a Beijing-appointed adviser
  • Hong Kong’s chief executive will have the power to appoint judges to hear national security cases, raising fears about judicial autonomy
  • Importantly, Beijing will have power over how the law should be interpreted, not any Hong Kong judicial or policy body. If the law conflicts with any Hong Kong law, the Beijing law takes priority
  • Some trials will be heard behind closed doors.
  • People suspected of breaking the law can be wire-tapped and put under surveillance
  • Management of foreign non-governmental organisations and news agencies will be strengthened
  • The law will also apply to non-permanent residents and people “from outside [Hong Kong]… who are not permanent residents of Hong Kong”.

Australia has also promised up to 10,000 residencies for Students and temporary visas leading to permanent residency.

The South China Morning Post has reported a large rise in inquiries with immigration consultants to leave Hong Kong for a better life.

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