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vigorously’ (Huque et al 1998: 34). The Governors were, in turn, appointees of the British government.

policy.

The executive branch of the government or the Government Secretariat formulates Policy is effectively made by civil servants with little input from elsewhere

although the 1999). The

government claims political legitimacy

that it of the

is more consultative than under colonial rule (Lam Hong Kong government has therefore relied on the

‘appearance’ of a politically neutral enshrined the notion that a neutral, guaranteeing the future livelihood of

civil service (Scott 1996: 279). The Joint Declaration

stable Hong

and effective

Kong.

The

civil service was dominance of the

instrumental civil service

in in

policy formulation and governance ensured that there was administrative reform from outside the government. Beyond Hong Kong’s civil society remains limited.

no political pressure for Legco, policy input from

However, Hong Kong’s description as an administrative state is now contested following limited democratisation. From the Joint Declaration between Britain and China in 1984, the political climate in Hong Kong has been tempered by Sino-British exchanges over its future. Until 1985, Legco members were appointees of the Governor. After 1985,

the number seats were

of elected members on Legco became 24 (out of 60)

directly

elected.

Representatives

from

sub-national

although none of these government, namely the

District seats.

Boards, the Urban Council and the Regional Council indirectly elected 12 Legco The other 12 came from ‘functional’ constituencies. The Tiananmen massacres of

June

1989

prompted

the

British

government

to

speed

up

the

process

of

democratisation,

and the first direct capturing 17 out of

Legco the 18

elections in September 1991 saw pro-democratic candidates directly elected seats. Direct elections for only a third of the

sixty available seats in the in 2000 and 30 in 2004. the Basic Law. The main

Legco also took place in 1995 and 1998, increasing to 24 seats Future change to the electoral system remains open-ended under political parties to contest the directly elected seats in Legco are

the DAB Party, but

(Democratic Alliance the main difference

for the

Betterment

between

them is

of Hong Kong) and the their stance on relations

Democratic with China.

Although both parties are considered ‘centre-left’, they Kong’s relationship with China. Broadly speaking, the and the Democrats are pro-independence.

are divided in their view of Hong DAB are considered ‘pro-Beijing’

11

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