Following the return of Hong Kong to Chinese sovereignty, it appears that the 'high degree of autonomy' promised to Hong Kong is limited in many ways. China's reservations about the development of democracy in Hong Kong lies at the heart of the problem. The conceptual inadequacies set out in the Basic Law, Hong Kong's mini-constitution, show a correlation between a lack of democracy and a loss of autonomy. This book argues that genuine autonomy from the central government in Beijing is impossible without a democratic system in Hong Kong. Developments since the handover have, however, demonstrated that democratic trends have been halted and even reversed and that democracy is not likely to be established in Hong Kong in the near future.

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