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Hong Kong's jurisdiction over Shenzhen Bay Port, Hong Kong - Zhuhai - Macao Bridge and the Express Rail Link

 

The general legal principle on jurisdiction is: each country shall have jurisdiction over its own land. Hong Kong of course is not a country. But it has its own jurisdictional power under the “one country, two systems” principle. The above general legal principle on jurisdiction therefore must apply also to Hong Kong.

 

Section 5 of the Shenzhen Bay Port Hong Kong Port Area Ordinance (Cap. 591) provides that the laws of Hong Kong shall apply in area lying within Hong Kong. This is consistent with the general legal principle on jurisdiction.

 

As for the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, there is no statue which expressly deals with the jurisdiction issue. However, according to the “Government Statement in respect of the jurisdiction of the Eastern Artificial Island of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge” published on 17 December 2019, the operation and law enforcement of the portion of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge situated in Hong Kong are carried out by the Hong Kong Government in accordance with the laws of Hong Kong. This is also consistent with the general legal principle on jurisdiction.

 

The Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link (Co-location) Ordinance (Cap. 632), however, provides a creative deviation from this general principle due to practical consideration. It introduces the “Mainland Port Area” which includes part of the West Kowloon Station and train compartments of passenger trains in operation on the Hong Kong section of the Express Rail Link. The laws of mainland China shall apply in the “Mainland Port Area” which is geographically and physically located in Hong Kong.

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