Patten plea to US

The Hong Kong Governor, Chris Patten, yesterday made his most explicit plea yet to President Bill Clinton to renew China's Most Favoured Nation (MFN) trading privileges, despite the Sino-British dispute over the colony's future, Teresa Poole reports from Hong Kong.

'If those who would help us have it in mind to pull our constitutional concerns into the MFN debate,' he said, 'I should like to make a very frank appeal to them: please don't. You can't help us by hurting our economy.' Mr Patten visits the US next month to press this point.