"The results of his policy were remarkable. At the end of World War II, Hong Kong was a dirt-poor island with a per-capita income about one-quarter that of Britain's. By 1997, when sovereignty was transferred to China, its per-capita income was roughly equal to that of the departing colonial power, even though Britain had experienced sizable growth over the same period. That was a striking demonstration of the productivity of freedom, of what people can do when they are left free to pursue their own interests.
Mr. Tsang insists that he only wants the government to act 'when there are obvious imperfections in the operation of the market mechanism.' That ignores the reality that if there are any 'obvious imperfections,' the market will eliminate them long before Mr. Tsang gets around to it. Much more important are the 'imperfections'--obvious and not so obvious--that will be introduced by overactive government."
Milton Friedman, "Hong Kong Wrong"
(via Opinion Journal)