Robert Grieves, Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (AmCham HK) along with Tara Joseph, President of AmCham HK, were on their way to the annual AmCham ball in Macau, held at the Macau border for two-hours and then denied entry without any explanation.
The refusal to allow two high profile AmCham Hong Kong executives to enter Macau for a non-political AmCham event that was attended by both Chinese and International business executives and their spouses, was seen as retaliation for the chamber’s public opposition to the Hong Kong extradition bill, and tension over U.S. legislation on Hong Kong’s affairs.
AmCham HK issued a statement ion Saturday that said that its chairman Robert Grieves and president Tara Joseph were separately prevented from entering the former Portuguese colony. The purpose of their trips were to attend the annual AmCham Macau Ball.
The AmCham statement said, “Both Robert and Tara were given no reason for why they were delayed. After several hours, and after having to sign a statement that they voluntarily agreed not to pursue entry into Macau, they both returned to Hong Kong without any difficulty. “We are puzzled as to why this happened, given this was simply a social occasion to celebrate AmCham Macau’s annual gathering.”
Macau immigration authorities could not be reached for comment on the incident.
Joseph discussed the entry denial with Reuters News and said she was puzzled as to why she was prevented from crossing into Macau for the annual event, which is also attended by Hanscom Smith, the U.S. Consul General of Hong Kong and Macau.