We are shocked and deeply concerned over the decision by the Hong Kong authorities to refuse a work visa renewal for Victor Mallet, Asia News Editor for the Financial Times, and call for a full explanation for this extraordinary move.
Refusing a visa in this case, to a bona fide journalist working for one of the world’s leading newspapers, sets a terrible precedent for Hong Kong's reputation as a place where the rule of law applies and where freedom of speech is protected by law.Mr Mallet has been a journalist for the Financial Times and Reuters for more than 30 years. He first joined the FCC in 2003 and has served as the Club’s First Vice President since 2017. As such, he hosted many FCC events on a wide range of topics, including one in August with Andy Chan Ho-tin, co-founder of the Hong Kong National Party which has since been banned. This event was strongly condemned by the Chinese authorities and the Hong Kong government though it was lawful and took place in the same professional manner as all other events hosted by the FCC. The same speaker had previously spoken to other forums.
In the absence of any reasonable explanation, we call on the authorities to rescind their decision and allow Mr Mallet to continue to work for the Financial Times in Hong Kong and serve as FCC First Vice President.