One-third of the 142,000 Hong Kongers who were granted visas to emigrate to the UK are those under 18. Many young people are leaving Hong Kong to avoid being brainwashed. 

Under-18 applicants reached up to 38,600 and represented the biggest group. It’s followed by those between 35 to 44 years old, reaching a number of 32,600 people.

Raymond Wong Yung-man – a current affairs commentator – told The Epoch Times that these numbers are shocking. According to him, within the under-18 group are the future leaders, while people from 35 to 44-year-olds may be middle-class professionals with school-aged children. He complained: “All are in a hurry to run away rather than staying here waiting to be brainwashed?”

He also called pro-Beijing politicians in Hong Kong hypocrites. He blames them for arranging for their family members to depart Hong Kong or their children to attend international schools while praising Hong Kong’s environment as “snatching talent.”

The wave of young people leaving Hong Kong is reflected quite clearly in its public schools. Hong Kong’s public schools have fewer classes both in the elementary and secondary grades during the 2022 – 2023 school year.

A recent HSBC survey confirms this. According to the survey, more than one-third of middle-class families plan to send their children abroad. 40% chose the UK, followed by 16-17% each for Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Hong Kong government also admitted it. 

In his “Policy Address” in October, Chief Executive John Lee Ka-Chiu stated that the workforce has shrunk by 140,000 in the past two years. More than 60% of these are highly skilled. 

At the time, a government source said that 25 to 39-year-olds accounted for most of the lost workers. This situation is unprecedented in Hong Kong’s recent history. 

Also, according to government figures, 113,000 Hong Kongers left permanently in the past year. This is the third consecutive year of such a trend.

Besides, the UK also expanded the scope of its BNO, or British National Overseas visa, for Hong Kong residents. Under the new status, young people born on or after July 1, 1997, and reaching 18 years old could apply. This new step would likely worsen Hong Kong’s population loss.

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