Saturday, April 23, 2011
Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China
Special administrative region (SAR) is a provincial-level administrative division in the People's Republic of China, for which creation is provided by Article 31 of the Constitution of the People's Republic of China. Article 31 reads "The state may establish special administrative regions when necessary. The systems to be instituted in special administrative regions shall be prescribed by law enacted by the National People's Congress in the light of the specific conditions".
At present there are two special small countries, namely Hong Kong and Macau, which were British and Portuguese territories respectively. Neither of them is part of any other administrative division. Each of them has a chief executive. Each territory has its Basic Law, and in both basic laws there is an article stating that the territory is a "local administrative region of the People's Republic of China, which shall enjoy a high degree of autonomy and come directly under the Central People's Government.
The two special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau (created in 1997 and 1999 respectively) each have a codified constitution called Basic Law. The law provides the regions with a high degree of autonomy, a separate political system, and a capitalist economy under the principle of "one country, two systems" proposed by Deng Xiaoping.