Former Secretary for Transport and Housing Anthony Cheung on Sunday urged Hong Kong to take steps to clear up misconceptions and promote its strengths to the world.
Speaking on a radio programme, Cheung, who is now an advisor at the University of Education, said Hong Kong has been portrayed negatively in the international media and it's important to change this perception.
He stressed the importance of Hong Kong's values, such as having a fair market and being governed by the rule of law. Cheung believes that these qualities should be reinforced so that people have a better understanding of Hong Kong.
"Now some of the criticism may not be entirely fair, but it is up to us in Hong Kong, whether in government, business or the community, to show that Hong Kong is still a very vibrant city," he said.
"We are still reaching out to the world. We are good at allowing different views. We allow the market to be very open and we allow free competition. We have the protection of the rule of law. All these qualities which used to define Hong Kong should be reinvented so that any misconceptions ... might be corrected."
He said the city was at a new stage, moving from chaos to better governance and prosperity. He stressed the need to avoid extreme divisions in politics and to adopt policies that are more open and inclusive.
"I am not saying that we are now in a situation where things are becoming too extreme. But I am sounding a note of caution because in any transition from a rather extreme situation to the other direction. There's always a risk of going to the other extreme, so we have to be careful," he said.