Following national security law, 37% of Hongkongers consider emigration

Young people with limited wealth interested in Taiwan

Hongkongers standing in line to send passport-related documents

Hongkongers standing in line to send passport-related documents (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Following China’s passage of a national security law for Hong Kong, 37 percent of the territory’s population have been considering emigration, with Taiwan mostly popular with low-income youths, a poll showed Tuesday (June 2).

The opinion survey, published by the Chinese-language Ming Pao, asked 815 people for their reactions to the law, which was approved by China’s rubber-stamp National People’s Congress. The number of 37.2 percent considering emigration amounted to a jump of 13 percent from the 24.2 percent recorded by a similar poll in March, CNA reported.

The wish to leave Hong Kong is highest among the youngest, highest-educated and wealthiest parts of society, the survey found. Only 10.4 percent of government supporters were considering emigration, while 63.3 percent of opposition supporters of more autonomy wanted to move out.

Hongkongers interested in making Taiwan their new homeland were mostly young and therefore not very wealthy, while opposition supporters considered the United States and those seeing themselves as independents named Canada as their first choice, according to the poll.

Around 63 percent of the Ming Pao survey respondents agreed with the statements that the national security law threatened Hong Kong’s status as an international financial center, affected freedoms and rights, and also broke the promise of “one country, two systems” for 50 years after the handover by Great Britain in 1997.

Immigration consultants said that the recent number of questions about migrating to other countries had surged, but that most cases were requests for information about the process and not yet clear applications.