The level of naivety about China is extraordinary. As someone who was actively involved in the opening up of China in the 1980s I have seen Chinese ambition and Western greed close at hand from the start. It was always a pact with the Devil, and the Devil was always going to win, and some !
Gradually, over 30+ years, a dependency on China both as a market for British goods and services and as a key supplier to Britain of a very wide range of manufactured goods has been put in place. This is not going to change, indeed it is certain to expand further.
Hand-wringing over Hong Kong will rightly be treated with disdain by those of us who saw close at hand the iniquity of Thatcher’s “Joint Declaration” sell out in the 1980s. After Tiananmen Square in 1989 British businessmen couldn’t wait to get back to Beijing and to pick up where they left off. We had neither a principled foreign nor trade policy at that time and we haven’t developed one since, or even tried to.
Without exception my HK friends thirty years ago, having been rejected by British abandonment sought the citizenship of friendlier nations who saw the contribution they could potentially make. Visit the vibrant Hong Kong communities in Canadian or Australian cities if you doubt that. A new generation will surely take the same path. Britain’s hugely belated offer of residence will be treated with the contempt it deserves.