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Hong Kong angry over influx of mainlanders

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 02:10

Feb. 15 - Hong Kong residents stage a string of protests as a debate rages over the burden placed on the former British colony by a flood of mainland Chinese. Sophia Soo reports.

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Anger is boiling over in Hong Kong. Residents are unhappy over the influx of mainland Chinese, who are taking over their roads and hospital beds. Protests are occurring more often against policies favouring the mainlanders. From March onwards, 50 cars will be allowed in from China each day. In 2010, of the total newborns in Hong Kong, around a third, or 32,653 were born to mainland women. This is up from just 620 babies in 2001. Although the 28 million Chinese people that visited Hong Kong last year contributed to their economy, grassroots resentment is on the rise. (SOUNDBITE) (English) GREEN STORE PRESIDENT, ROY TAM, SAYING: "We Hong Kong people are afraid that we will be too influenced by the mainland system, or the mainland style of life. And we don't want that. We think that Hong Kong is quite a cosmopolitan and modern city. But now still the culture of China or their way of living is still a little bit different. And we don't want to be affected by them." A recent video comparing mainlanders to a swarm of locusts has been viewed widely online. Advertisements were also placed by angry locals in the newspaper, featuring the slogan "Hong Kong people have had enough!" The Chinese are not impressed with the hostility. (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) CIVIL SERVANT MS. SHEN, SAYING: "I am not happy with this extreme means of expression. If a foreigner came to China and we treated them like that it would be inappropriate. So I am still very angry with the extreme way they have dealt with this." In a recent poll, only 17 percent of Hong Kong residents identified themselves as Chinese citizens, the lowest level in 12 years. Sophia Soo, Reuters.

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Hong Kong angry over influx of mainlanders

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 02:10