Tuesday 3rd September 2019

Dear Reader,

We're back! What a long summer it's been.

The most likely outcome for HK
A systemically unstable equilibrium of civil liberties without democracy may have irrevocably tipped towards an authoritarian outcome. We suggest a way to salvage the situation, but we consider the most likely outcome is now a crackdown. We look at what form that might take, the possible aftermath and the looming 2047 expiry of Basic Law promises. (3-Sep-2019)

To listen
Webb on HK protests and China: a 1-hour podcast
Hidden Forces, 19-Aug-2019
Recorded at 9pm HKT on 16-Aug-2019, a wide-ranging discussion on the unsustainability of HK's model of civil liberties without democracy and the possible outcomes, as well as the unsustainability of the centrally-planned Chinese economic model.

Agnes Chow Ting v Returning Officer and Au Nok Hin
HK Court of First Instance, 2-Sep-2019
Mr Au's election is nullified because Ms Chow was not given the right to be heard before the Returning Officer disqualified her on the ground that, although she signed the required declaration that she would uphold the Basic Law, the RO didn't believe her. If the judgment is not successfully appealed then there will be a by-election on HK Island. The Court maintains that the Returning Officer must still filter candidates by second-guessing their declaration, following the NPCSC interpretation of 7-Nov-2016.

MMT rejects SFC application to vary investigation costs order in Fujikon case
Market Misconduct Tribunal, 26-Aug-2019

Chen Hsong (0057): majority shareholder votes Chiang Chi Kin, brother of Chairman, off the board at AGM
Company announcement, 22-Aug-2019
The announcement fails to state whether there is any disagreement between Mr Chiang and other directors and/or other matters to be brought to shareholders' attention. At the time of the annual report, he and his sister Chiang Lai Yuen (Chairman) were directors of the majority shareholder, Chen Hsong Investment Ltd, which is 100% held by Chiangs' Industrial Holdings Ltd, of which Ms Chiang was a director. In turn, this is held by the trustee of the Chiang Chen Industrial Charity Foundation. The 2 siblings were among eligible beneficiaries of the trust via BVI companies that they own.

Chen Hsong (0057): co has no plan to consider any privatisation proposal, none has been put forward
Company announcement, 22-Aug-2019
At this afternoon's AGM, David Webb asked whether the company consulted the majority shareholder before making this statement. The answer was "no". So this statement does not rule out the possibility that the majority shareholder is considering putting forward a proposal to the board. The meeting was video-recorded (but not webcast) by the company with 4 cameras, so the media can ask them for a copy. It's a public company after all.

Gatecoin Ltd v BD Multimedia HK Ltd
HK Court of First Instance, 21-Aug-2019

Judge orders confiscation of HK$1.46m bribes from Tu Bing, ex-UBS.
ICAC, 20-Aug-2019

Cathay Pacific (0293) management changes
Company media release, 16-Aug-2019
This is the most appalling kowtow to Peking, dressed up as a "flight safety" issue. Every substantial employer in HK, in both the public and private sectors, has employees who have participated in marches that have frequently gone beyond their approved spatial or time limits. Should all the CEOs resign? What did the PRC Government threaten Swire and Cathay with to make these sacrificial offerings at this "sensitive time", as they put it? CX says recent events have "put our reputation and brand under pressure" - but tonight's shameful appeasement does far worse.

"Long Hair" gets short cut to final appealJustice is blind, except for haircuts
HK Court of Final Appeal, 13-Aug-2019
Mr Leung is granted leave for a final appeal to be heard on 18-Feb-2020. More people in wigs will hear his plea that male and female prisoners should have the same rule on haircuts. The UK removed the different treatment by 1999, as we reported last year in "Justice is blind, except for haircuts", after the Court of Appeal overturned the First Instance judgment which was in his favour.

And much more besides...
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David M. Webb
Editor, Webb-site.com