HC Deb 04 March 1994 vol 238 c29W
Mr. Parry

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has received concerning the citizenship status of non-Chinese ethnic minority residents in Hong Kong; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Goodlad

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and I have received a number of such representations. These have included letters from hon. Members and representations from Hong Kong's Legislative Council—particularly its sub-committee on nationality.

Parliament looked carefully at the position of the non-Chinese ethnic community in considering the passage of the British Nationality (Hong Kong) Act 1990. The conclusion drawn was that the future of these people was adequately safeguarded.

The joint declaration provides for those who are permanent residents of Hong Kong to continue to enjoy right of abode there after July 1997. But if members of the non-Chinese ethnic communities with solely British nationality ever came under pressure to leave Hong Kong and had nowhere else to go, we have made it plain that the Government of the day would be exptected to consider with particular sympathy any request from such people for admission to the United Kingdom.

We looked again at the provisions in place following representations made in 1993 by the Legislative Council and the Hong Kong Government. We saw no reason to change its established policy. This remains our view.