Introduction to the Hong Kong Basic Law

Second Edition


Danny Gittings

ISBN : 978-988-8208-36-4


September 2016

460 pages, 6″ x 9″

  • HK$550.00
No longer available

Also available in Paperback HK$250.00

The Hong Kong Basic Law is the constitutional document which sets out the general policies and system of government for Hong Kong under the “one country, two systems” formula. It promises Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy, seeks to preserve a separate common law system with an independent judiciary, and guarantees a long list of rights and freedoms.

The only introductory text on this topic, Introduction to the Hong Kong Basic Law provides a highly readable starting point to understanding the important issues shaping Hong Kong’s future. This book traces the origins of the Hong Kong Basic Law and analyses its content, especially in relation to Hong Kong’s political system, the judiciary, and human rights. It is required reading for students on a wide range of courses in law, politics, and other disciplines, from sub-degree through to undergraduate and postgraduate level as well as professional examinations. The book also appeals to a wider audience, enabling general interest readers with no prior knowledge of the subject to easily understand how Hong Kong is being run under Chinese sovereignty.

The second edition has been updated thoroughly to discuss important new developments, including the implications of the mass street protests known as the Umbrella Movement, and adds a new concluding chapter on the future of “one country, two systems”.

Danny Gittings has taught and examined thousands of students in courses on the Hong Kong Basic Law as an associate professor and senior programme director at the College of Humanities and Law in the University of Hong Kong’s School of Professional and Continuing Education. A former journalist, he reported on many of the events described in this book during a 15-year career in senior editorial positions at the South China Morning Post and the Wall Street Journal Asia.

“Danny Gittings’s Introduction to the Hong Kong Basic Law makes a significant contribution to an important subject. It is expressed in reader-friendly terms. My favourable opinion of the first edition of this book is vindicated by the fact that it has gone into a second edition. The latest edition picks up on what has occurred since the previous one, including the worrying matters which have made it necessary to give the concluding chapter a wholly new orientation.” —The Hon. Mr. Justice Kemal Bokhary, Permanent Judge of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal (1997–2012), Non-Permanent Judge (2012–)

“This well-researched and very readable introduction is suitable for a wide range of readers. Building on the success of the book’s first edition, this new edition offers fresh insights into the long-term impact of Hong Kong’s constitutional developments that have recently captured worldwide attention. Students of Hong Kong law at all levels and anyone interested in how Hong Kong’s future may unfold will find it essential reading.” —Professor Fu Hualing, Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong

“The second edition of Introduction to the Hong Kong Basic Law is a highly intelligible, learned, and useful guide to one of the most fascinating and important legal documents of our time. As with the first edition, Gittings has again done readers a valuable service. Everything needed to become Basic Law competent is here at one’s fingertips.” —Roy L. Sturgeon, The Chinese Journal of Comparative Law