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Business trends

China plan for security law rattles Hong Kong businesses

Pro-Beijing camp voices support but market reaction reveals growing anxiety

HONG KONG -- After Beijing's proposals to implement national security legislation in Hong Kong triggered the worst day on the city's stock market in five years, what caught the eye in following days was the number of businesses offering staunch support for the proposal.

In numerous newspaper ads over the weekend and on Monday, various trade organizations and companies connected to mainland China welcomed the legislation. Among those weighing in were China Merchants Group and China Resources Group, two of the major Hong Kong-based Chinese state-owned conglomerates, and the big four state-owned banks. Messages, mostly written in red ink in Chinese, even appeared in the English-language South China Morning Post, owned by Alibaba Group Holding.

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