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Friend of Tortoise Exclusive

The Hong Kong Diaries: In conversation with Lord Chris Patten

The Hong Kong Diaries: In conversation with Lord Chris Patten

This event is exclusive to Friends of Tortoise

This is a newsroom ThinkIn. In-person and digital-only tickets are available.

How do you negotiate with China? 25 years after one of the most pivotal moments in British-Chinese relations, we speak to Lord Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong. 

Between 1992 and 1997, Patten kept a diary describing in detail how Hong Kong was run as a British colony, what happened as the handover approached, and his efforts to secure political freedom for Hong Kong’s institutions. 

Unexpectedly, his opponents included not only the Chinese themselves, but some British businessmen and civil service mandarins upset by Patten’s efforts, for whom political freedom and the rule of law in Hong Kong seemed less important than keeping on the right side of Beijing. 

With unprecedented insights into negotiating with the Chinese, we’ll discuss Hong Kong, the handover and what has happened since. Join us for a ThinkIn with Lord Patten’s powerful assessment of recent events and his reflections on how to deal with China — then and now.

editor and invited experts

James Harding
Co-Founder and Editor

Lord Chris Patten
Governor of Hong Kong, 1992-1997