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CE mourns Tong Wai-ki

Chief Executive Carrie Lam today expressed deep sorrow over the passing of Hong Kong Taoist Association Chairman Tong Wai-ki.   She said Mr Tong was held in high regard, adding that he had been committed to promoting the Taoist religion and Chinese culture and actively participated in social services and charitable activities, making significant contributions over the years.   He was awarded the Silver Bauhinia Star in 2013.   "I am deeply saddened by the passing of Mr Tong. On behalf of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government, I would like to extend my deepest condolences to his family and the Taoist community," Mrs Lam noted.   Acting Secretary for Home Affairs Patrick Nip also expressed deep condolences over the passing of Mr Tong.   He commended Mr Tong for dedicating his life in promoting the Taoist religion and uniting the Taoist community while actively participating in charitable services and talent nurturing. http://dlvr.it/SHNxxJ

HK ranked freest economy again

The Government today welcomed the Fraser Institute's ranking of Hong Kong as the world's freest economy, saying the decision affirms the city's long-standing and steadfast commitment to building a free economy with a level playing field.   Hong Kong has held the top rank since the inception of the Fraser Institute's report. Among the latest report's five areas of assessment, the city continued to rank first in “Freedom to Trade Internationally” and “Regulation”.   In relation to the institute's unfair comments regarding Hong Kong's rule of law, the enactment of the National Security Law and Mainland intervention in Hong Kong's affairs, the Government stressed that under “one country, two systems”, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region's trusted legal system remains as robust as ever.   The rule of law is a fundamental core value of Hong Kong and much cherished by the community. The Government has been fully committed to upholding Hong Kong's fine tradition of the rule of law and judicial independence.   The enactment of the National Security Law is for safeguarding national security, which is the legitimate right and duty of every state.   The National Security Law has clearly stipulated four categories of offences that endanger national security. It clearly sets out the elements of the offences, penalties, mitigation factors and other consequences. There is no question of law-abiding people inadvertently violating the law.   The Government noted it will continue to uphold Hong Kong's institutional strengths, including the rule of law and judicial independence, a free trade and investment regime, a simple and low tax system, a favourable business environment and an efficient and clean government.   “These strengths will continue to provide a conducive environment for businesses to thrive and to strengthen their competitiveness, enabling our economy to prosper,” it added.   As Hong Kong enjoys unique advantages and unlimited business opportunities, the Government has every confidence in its long-term economic development.
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