At midnight on June 30, 1997, Hong Kong became part of the People’s Republic of China. The transfer of Hong Kong sovereignty from Great Britain to China was an extraordinary historical event, signifying the end of the West’s colonial presence in Asia and the rise of China’s hegemony.
In 150 years as a British colony, Hong Kong changed from a barely inhabitable colonial entrepôt to one of the world’s leading financial and industrial centers. Faced with a new social and economic order under Chinese law, many Hong Kongers moved to a new country; others decided to stay; but many chose to maintain their lives and livelihoods in Hong Kong, while spreading their assets and their family members around the world. They bought apartments in London and condos in Vancouver, invested in firms in Guangzhou and Thailand, and sent their children to schools in Europe and Australia. These new up-market migrants have transformed a cosmopolitan outlook into a global presence.
Cosmopolitan Capitalists focuses on the people of Hong Kong and how they are defining themselves under alteredcircumstances. It is a broad multi-disciplinary view of Hong Kong’s transformation, written for a general audience by some of the world’s foremost scholars on the region.