Date
18 December 2017
After government service, (from left) John Tsang, Leung Chun-ying and Jasper Tsang manage to keep themselves busy by engaging in worthy endeavors. Photos: HKEJ/CNSA
After government service, (from left) John Tsang, Leung Chun-ying and Jasper Tsang manage to keep themselves busy by engaging in worthy endeavors. Photos: HKEJ/CNSA

New careers for old politicians

Politicians never retire, they just change gears.

The Legislative Council’s former top honcho Jasper Tsang has joined the board of Beijing Tong Ren Tang Chinese Medicine as an independent non-executive director.

In his first corporate role, the 70-year-old founding member of the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong took a seat in the overseas arm of a Chinese pharmaceutical company with over 340 years of history.

It’s not really a lucrative job. During the three-year stint, he will be receiving a fixed director’s fee of HK$20,000 per month.

Jasper Tsang stepped down as Legco president last year after eight years in the service. Last week, he was appointed by Chief Executive Carrie Lam as member of the Task Force on Land Supply, which will seek to reach public consensus on how to boost land supply to ease the city’s housing shortage.

Indeed, there’s life after politics. In the case of former financial secretary John Tsang, who was defeated in the chief executive election in March, it’s the academe that beckons.

He will become adjunct professor at the Department of Politics and Public Administration of the University of Hong Kong, reuniting with his former colleagues Peter Lai and Allan Lai.

Saying farewell to government service doesn’t have to mean a humdrum, inactive lifestyle.

John Tsang, 66, has joined several local charities in their campaign to gather money for famine victims in Africa. He also did a music video in support of Dialogue in the Dark, a foundation for the visually impaired.

What about former chief executive Leung Chun-ying? Does anyone care about what he’s doing these days?

Aside from being elected vice-chairman of China’s top political advisory body, the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, CY Leung, 63, is said to be involved in two startups, the Belt and Road Hong Kong Centre and the Bay Area Hong Kong Centre.

Leung was named director of the two companies, which are involved in helping firms tap opportunities in China’s Belt and Road initiative and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Bay Area plan.

He is replacing Roy Leung of the law firm Sit, Fung, Kwong and Shum (SFKS), according to news website hk01.com.

Roy Leung and his law firm partner Peter Sit registered the two companies in early July, a few days after CY stepped down as chief executive.

CY Leung had engaged the services of SFKS in a number of defamation cases he filed against members of media.

It is unlikely that Leung will use the two companies to make money, given that the national agenda is involved here.

Rather, it is more likely that he would want to set up a think tank, something like his predecessor Tung Chee-hwa’s Our Hong Kong Foundation, to help the current administration in tackling the city’s enormous challenges.

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CG

EJ Insight writer

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