It is a frequently asked question – what exactly is Hong Kong and Macau? They are certainly not country, since they belong to China. You heard the term one country, two systems, but then Hong Kong and Macau have separate governments and passports, so wouldn’t that be three systems? Not to mention the fact that you need to get your passport stamps when you enter China from either Hong Kong or Macau, and between Hong Kong and Macau as well. So if they both have their own immigration system, then aren’t they country?
Let me tell you – your confusion is well founded. The entire situation is confusing at best, and unless you lived through it in Hong Kong and Macau, it’s difficult to grasp the entire idea fully. You see, the whole situation of Hong Kong Macau goes back to the time of the Empires and overseas colonies. China was a well sought after place, fill with tea leaves, spices and silk that all the empires wanted to get their hands on, and so Portugal bribed the Macau officials to land there, while England secured their place in Hong Kong through the Bigger gun policy and through the initiation of Opium war.
When the empire ended, a lease was signed that Hong Kong Macau were to be returned to China in the 1990s. The assimilation back into China fully was an issue that was pushed back another 50 years for the generation of 2040s to deal with, so for now, Hong Kong and Macau still retain their own government, law and immigration system. The video below will explain the history and the particulars much better, offering you a condense version of the Hong Kong Macau situation.
What will happen in the 2040s you asked? Well, only China knows. But perhaps it’s a good idea to visit Hong Kong and Macau now and see the difference for yourself years down the line.