Chief Executive Carrie Lam said on Tuesday that it would be unreasonable to deny Hong Kong permanent residents living on the mainland the chance to vote in elections in the SAR, although she did not refer to voters in other jurisdictions.
Speaking to reporters ahead of her weekly Executive Council meeting, Lam said that people needed to "realise the reality" that a large number of permanent residents and registered voters are now spending a lot of time on the mainland for either business or study.
"These people will also expect that they have a chance to vote in general elections in Hong Kong because they still have very strong connections with Hong Kong, and for arguments sake, nowadays some of the policies of the Hong Kong SAR government do have a mainland dimension, and these people are very concerned about any such policies," Lam said.
"So it would be not reasonable to deny them of a chance to vote, and this is what I meant by the public or the society expectations."
She said that any changes to voting arrangements, especially any changes that allow those living outside Hong Kong to vote, will require a legislative amendment, therefore the public and lawmakers will have a chance to express their views on the matter.