E Lisa Wong had always thought she would move away from Hong Kong when her seven-year-old daughter reached the age of the university. But the recent political crisis has made her come up with an application form for emigration to Australia now.
"I have to submit an application as soon as possible," said the 45-year-old former bank manager. "It's hard to raise your family and start again in a new country, but the upheavals of recent weeks have made me feel comfortable."
Hong Kong has been rocked by its biggest political crisis for decades over the past two weeks ̵
Many Hong Kong people are considering leaving before the recent political turmoil due to exorbitant property prices, high cost of living and notoriously intensive education. But the crisis stemming from the controversial bill has reinforced the solution of those like Wong to make serious plans to emigrate.
According to a survey conducted in December 2018 and published in January by the Chinese University of Hong Kong, 34% of Hong Kong adults would emigrate if they had the chance. Of this group, 16.2% have already planned to move. Those who wanted to leave were disproportionately young and well-educated: 51% were between 18 and 30 and 47.9% had college degrees.
Among those who tend to emigrate, three of the five biggest reasons to go politically were: 25.7% said there were "too many political disputes and disagreements," owed the 17.4% lack of democracy and their dissatisfaction with the political system, and 14.9% were dissatisfied with the Chinese government. Other factors were "overcrowded living conditions" (25.7%) and high property prices (17.4%).
The three most popular destinations were Canada (18.8%), Australia (18.0%) and Taiwan (11.3%).  A mass protest against extradition bill on June 16 "src =" https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/96c69815ec451b422cb3225311b3938e2856e554/0_302_6016_3610/master/6016.jpg?width=300&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s= = c7932ff6a5daa82ba41d0fb26356b34b "/>
Emigration is nothing new in Hong Kong. After the 1984 Chinese-British Joint Declaration announced that Hong Kong's sovereignty would return to China in 1997, emigration advice became a productive enterprise. Heavenly efforts in 1989 sparked a wave of emigration, only eight years before the handover to China.
The government does not keep official statistics on the number of Hong Kong's moving abroad, but emigration consultants say the desire to leave jumped after 2014 Umbrella Movement failed to force Beijing to give Hong Kong people an incomplete vote to choose their leader and nailed again this year during the recent protests.
Willis Fu from Goldmax Immigration Consulting Co., says studies received by his company this year have doubled from last year. And the number of forms of assessment it received – a measure of the number of people who are serious about emigration – has grown from about 30 to 40 a week in March and April to 70 a week in June. The political atmosphere in Hong Kong was overcast by the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen crash on June 4 and the extradition bill planned to take place on June 12.
The political crisis this year is unprecedented in Hong Kong's history: one million people are estimated to have marched on June 9, where hundreds of thousands occupy highways outside the government headquarters on June 12, later spread by police. tear gas and rubber balls. About two million again marched on June 16 after the leader Carrie Lam failed to apologize, even though she had suspended the bill.
For Angel Chan, a mother of two preschool children in the 30s, the threatening extradition bill, even temporarily shackled, filled her with trembling. The "Mainland" trend in Hong Kong, including indoctrination of political ideology and the transition to using Mandarin instead of Cantonese to Chinese classes in schools, casts a shadow over its children.
"You do not know when they will bring the law back and it will always hang over us," she said. "And what will happen in 2047 when our children are in their 30s? I do not want my children to be in a place where there is no freedom to think."
The one country-to-system policy introduced after the transfer of sovereignty in 1997 to maintain the Hong Kong status quo for 50 years expires in 2047. It is still unclear what Hong Kong's status would be. When a deadline passes, however, political crises in recent years have added uncertainty about its political future.
Willy Lam, an adjunct professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said, although the extradition bill has been suspended, "it will not remove anxiety because Beijing is determined to promote political integration between Hong Kong and China". This includes infrastructure projects such as a bridge linking Hong Kong, Macau, and the Greater Bay Area of Southern China, a daily quota of 150 Chinese immigrants from the mainland to Hong Kong and indoctrination of ideology in schools and rejection of critical media.
Lam said that both waves of emigration in 1989 and 2019 showed "a serious degree of distrust of the Chinese Communist Party" and are associated with the fear that the Chinese system may violate Hong Kong's core values such as the rule of law, civil rights and freedoms.
Even young active in the recent protests express helplessness and say they would also leave if their efforts to uphold Hong Kong's current freedom failures fail.
"If there is nothing we can do to save Hong Kong, it would focus on working hard in the coming years and trying to move abroad," said a 24-year-old athlete who identified himself as Tom.
But many say that they are actually reluctant to leave their homes and emigration is a difficult and unwilling choice.
"I love Hong Kong, but we have no choice," Wong said. "If things weren't that bad, who would like to leave the place where you grew up and leave your older parents and friends?"