Beijing names new immigration director for Hong Kong as current department chief retires
Beijing on Tuesday appointed a new director for Hong Kong’s Immigration Department, with the current agency chief retiring.
Authorities announced that Benson Kwok Joon-fung, a 34-year veteran and former deputy director of the department, had been named by the State Council to the top post after being nominated by the city’s leader.
Kwok, who will serve as immigration boss with immediate effect, will replace Au Ka-wang who has gone on pre-retirement leave. Au took on the position in 2020.
“Mr Kwok has extensive experience in departmental operations. He possesses solid management and leadership skills,” Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu on Tuesday said, expressing confidence that the department under Kwok would be well-equipped to face challenges ahead.
Kwok joined the agency in 1989, rising from an assistant immigration officer to chief immigration officer in 2009, then to a senior rank as an assistant director in 2002.
He was later appointed deputy director with Au in office.
Kwok this year also received the Hong Kong Immigration Service Medal for Distinguished Service.
Lee praised Au’s “admirable efforts” in ensuring effective entry-exit control and smooth passenger clearance in the past three years. He said the department had displayed “high efficiency and professionalism” during Au’s tenure.
“I convey my gratitude to Mr Au for his contribution to the HKSAR and wish him a happy retirement,” Lee said in a government statement.