Hong Kong leader’s approval rating falls to lowest since Sept.


Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam’s approval rating fell to the lowest level since September after her administration introduced sudden, mandatory Covid-19 testing orders that triggered criticism from residents across the city.

The proportion of people expressing confidence in Lam fell to 17.5%, according to the Hong Kong Public Opinion Research Institute on Tuesday. The survey of Cantonese-speaking residents was conducted between Feb. 2 and 5 with the results having a margin of error of 4% percentage points.

At current trends, Lam is on pace to finish her five-year term as Hong Kong’s least popular leader. Still that’s unlikely to threaten her position as Lam retains the support of China after she pushed through a national security law at Beijing’s command and clamped down on opposition figures both inside and outside the Legislative Council.

Hong Kong had some initial success controlling the spread of the virus but a new stream of infections prompted a clampdown that limits public gatherings to two people and stops dining at restaurants after 6 p.m. Those restrictions are scheduled to be relaxed on Feb 18 after case numbers dropped.