23 May 2019
Top officials of Beijing's Liaison Office in Hong Kong are expected to adopt an even higher profile than their predecessors. Photo: HKEJ
Top officials of Beijing's Liaison Office in Hong Kong are expected to adopt an even higher profile than their predecessors. Photo: HKEJ

Beijing’s Liaison Office undergoing top-level personnel overhaul

The State Council has announced that two deputy directors of Beijing’s Liaison Office in Hong Kong, Yin Xiaojing and Lin Wu, were “removed from office”, and their younger deputies, Dr. Tan Tieniu and He Jing, would take over their duties.

Both Tan and He are under 55. Tan had spent years studying in the United Kingdom, attaining high educational qualifications. Many believe Tan’s relatively young age and diversified background will work in his favor in integrating into Hong Kong.

Some people in the pro-establishment camp point out that “being removed from office” only refers to personnel movements. They maintain that Yin and Lin were “removed” from their posts because they had reached their retirement age.

During her term in office, Yin was mainly responsible for liaising with Hong Kong deputies to the National People’s Congress and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, as well as promoting relevant education, while Lin mainly dealt with members of pro-establishment political parties and “patriotic” civilian organizations in the city.

In fact, the departure of Yin and Lin was part of a major personnel overhaul initiated by Liaison Office director Wang Zhimin, who assumed the post in September last year.

Another heavyweight at the Liaison Office, deputy director Huang Lanfa, 63, is also about to retire, and Chen Dong, 54, is widely tipped to be his successor.

A native of Fujian, Chen had spent most of his political career working with officials of the province before he was appointed to the Liaison Office in February last year. He was a colleague of President Xi Jinping’s when Xi was also working in Fujian.

There was a time when Beijing’s Liaison Office had as many as nine deputy directors. But in view of President Xi’s call for all Communist Party and government organizations to downsize, only a “1+6” organization, comprising one top-ranking director and six deputy directors, will be left after the personnel overhaul is completed.

There is talk that director Wang and his deputies are going to adopt an even higher profile than their predecessors after the reorganization is finished.

A recent move by the Liaison Office is for its officials to write blogs using their real names to share their work experiences and views as well as foster Hong Kong people’s understanding of the office.

This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan 3

Translation by Alan Lee

[Chinese version 中文版]

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Columnist of Hong Kong Economic Journal.

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