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Hong Kong is one of the best places to live – but for how much longer?

27 0 211

The latest Henley Passport Index has just been in the news. This is a table of some 200 different passports listed in order of how many countries and territories the holders can visit without a visa.

The Hong Kong passport this year comes in at 19th place and entitles holders to enter 169 countries and territories without a visa. The top passport – Japan’s – gives visa-free access to 190 places. The China passport is ranked 69th with visa-free access to 74 places.

This ranking shows a high degree of international recognition of our travel documents. In day-to-day terms, it means a great deal of convenience for Hongkongers. Essentially, it indicates that foreign border control officials are confident that we have no reason to overstay and will go back home.

However, a narrative I have seen recently in several international news outlets suggests something a bit different: that a growing number of people are thinking of emigrating from Hong Kong.

Stories of a brain drain are not new. A Chinese University survey shows a fairly consistent level of around a third of people interested in leaving. Security Bureau estimates show that annual emigration numbers have declined from the peak of 10,300 in 2006 to a new low of around 6,500 in 2017. We also have a steady stream of........

© South China Morning Post