Monday, July 14, 2014

Fearing Waning Influence, Hong Kong to Study US Think Tanks

Jasper Tsang Yok-sing, head of Hong Kong's Legislative Council will be coming to the United States this summer to study high-powered think tanks before attempting to form one himself in Hong Kong.

Tsang has said that he plans to visit various think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation, Brookings Institution, and Center for American Progress (CAP).

Earlier in 2014, Tsang commissioned a group of experts to "nurture a mature think tank" in Hong Kong.  Among other things, he will the relationship that think tanks have with government, Congress, and political parties, and well as their funding and media relations operations.

Andrew Fung Ho-keung, the chief executive of the Policy Research Institute reportedly is working closely with Tsang on the think tank project.

Here is more about Hong Kong's think tank scence from the South China Morning Post (SCMP):
There are several policy institutes in Hong Kong which have formed a close relationship with the government.
The Bauhinia Foundation Research Centre, set up in 2006 by the head of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, Norman Chan Tak-lam, was regarded as former chief executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen's think tank.
But the centre's influence has diminished since Leung Chun-ying took office in 2012.
The One Country Two Systems Research Institute, led by executive councillor Cheung Chi-kong - a close aide of Leung - has since gained prominence.

Hong Kong currently has 30 think tanks according to the latest think tank survey conducted by the University of Pennsylvania.

As Howard Winn of SCMP pointed out earlier in the year, Hong Kong only has two think tanks ranked by that ranking: Hong Kong Centre for Economic Research and Civic Exchange.