Hong Kong may have a population of 7 million, but the very top it consists of a small business elite with innumerable cross directorships and direct links into government. Given the right pedigree, advancement is extremely rapid. Take for instance David Li Kwok-po, the quintessential old-money Hong Kong figure. He has a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth, is a trusted member of mainland China’s rubber-stamp bodies, has been a representative for decades of the banking fraternity on the Legislative Council, is the anglophile founder of Friends of Cambridge University , and is on the board of Dow Jones ( He was recently suspected of inadvertently leaking news of the Murdoch bid.).