Stephen Vines


As a recovering journalist who had attempted to withdraw from frontline reporting, Stephen Vines was lured back into action helping The Sunday Times in London to cover the 2019 Hong Kong protests in addition to providing commentary for a wide range of broadcasting outlets including the BBC, Al Jazeera, Reuters TV plus radio and televisions in Ireland, Germany, South Africa and Thailand.

He started his career as a freelance journalist specialising in Middle East affairs, going on to focus on business and industrial matters, working primarily at The Observer where he became the Deputy Business Editor before moving to become the Labour Editor, covering the miner’s strike, the UK’s biggest political and industrial story of the 1980s.

In 1987, he moved to Hong Kong as South East Asia Correspondent for The Observer. Five years later, he became The Guardian’s Hong Kong Correspondent and a regular contributor to papers such as the Asian Wall Street Journal, Fortune and the Daily Telegraph. He was also a regular contributor to the BBC, ABC (Australia) and Deutsche Welle and Radio Vaticana.

In 1993, Stephen became the founding Chief Editor of Eastern Express where he was responsible for all editorial aspects of the paper’s launch and established a full sized broadsheet newspaper in the record time of four months. He recruited a full-time editorial staff of some 140 people. The paper quickly established a reputation as Hong Kong’s most lively English language daily.

Afterwards, he worked as a foreign correspondent, covering Hong Kong and the region for The Independent. He also worked at Radio Television Hong Kong as presenter for television and radio programmes. In 2004, he became the publisher and co-founder of Spike, a ground breaking satirical magazine.

Stephen Vines currently writes political analysis columns for a number of Hong Kong outlets and presents a current affairs television programme, The Pulse, as well as being a weekly contributor to the Morning Brew radio show, both of which are aired by the public broadcaster, Radio Television Hong Kong.

A select portfolio can be found below:

Photo Credit: Kees Metselaar

Agent Contact: Kristina Pérez

titles



HONG KONG: CHINA’S NEW COLONY (1998)

THE YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY (1999)

ST. JOHN’S CATHEDRAL (2001)

COLONIAL HONG KONG (2002)

MARKET PANIC: WILD GYRATIONS, RISKS AND OPPORTUNITIES IN STOCK MARKETS (2005)

FOOD GURUS: 20 PEOPLE WHO CHANGED THE WAY WE EAT AND THINK ABOUT FOOD (2012)

SAI KUNG FOR ALL SEASONS (2013)

HONG KONG 20/20: REFLECTIONS ON A BORROWED PLACE (Contributor, 2017)

Awards & Commendations

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Industrial Journalist of the Year (UK, 1984)
BP/Industrial Society Award for Industrial Reporting (UK, 1986)
President of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Hong Kong (1992/3)
Amnesty International Human Rights Press Award, special award for commentary and analysis (Hong Kong, 2002)
Amnesty International Human Rights Press Award, first prize for commentary and analysis (Hong Kong, 2003)
Society of Publishers in Asia (SOPA) Ist Prize Excellence in Opinion Writing (2005)
Human Rights Press Award: Special merit award for commentary and analysis (2005)
Human Rights Award: Certificate of Special Merit for commentary (2015)

reviews

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    • HONG KONG: CHINA'S NEW COLONY
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      ‘[Vines] is admirably qualified to write this book, because he has enjoyed an overseas correspondent’s access to the corridors of power and a local journalist’s ability to make sense of what goes on there.’South China Morning Post

      ‘Provides unvarnished commentary on the shenanigans of the movers and shakers at the heart of the establishment…essential reading for those who wish to understand Hong Kong’s past, present and likely future.’Far Eastern Economic Review

      ‘The real attraction of HONG KONG: CHINA’S NEW COLONY lies in the rich details Vines collected as an outstanding journalist working in Hong Kong during the transition. Even those familiar with his line of arguments will find much that is new.’Asiaweek

      Hong Kong: China’s New Colony by Stephen Vines is the nearest most modern readers outside Hong Kong will get to understanding how business is done at ground level in Hong Kong and ultimately what the six million people there face under the new order.’Resident Abroad

    • THE YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY
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      ‘Stephen Vines has been for years one of the sharpest wisest commentators on Asian economics and politics. Unlike many others, he has not been seduced by talk of miracles, and spotted the dangers in the region as well as the many achievements. Vines has written a fascinating book that will annoy all the right people!’Chris Patten, the last Governor of Hong Kong.

      ‘In Stephen Vines the crisis has found a writer who remembers how to find out the facts and who presents the bill of indictment with acid style. Mr. Vines has written a valuable book that should be a set text for anyone likely to invest in Asia as the region recovers.’Michael Sheridan, Far East Correspondent, The Sunday Times

      ‘This book should be mandatory reading for students of business.’Simon Murray, The Independent

      ‘An insightful and entertaining book.’ — Jonathan Mirsky, The Spectator

    • MARKET PANIC: WILD GYRATIONS, RISKS AND OPPORTUNITIES IN STOCK MARKETS
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      MARKET PANIC is a reassuring book. Vines takes the usual financial advisor’s caveat ‘what goes up must come down’ and turns it on its head. Armed with this book we should be happily looking forward to the next panic.’The Economist

      ‘The contrarian’s manifesto: a much needed primer on how to think about markets…the next time you get a stock tip at a party, ignore and read this book.’Asian Wall Street Journal

      ‘At a time of deep stock market gloom, when the investment professionals have run out of answers and small investors have been panicked into submission, Stephen Vines’ commendably cool analysis is to be welcomed. It is to be recommended to anybody interested in investment in the long term.’Sunday Times

      ‘Stephen Vines’ latest book, MARKET PANIC, addresses the non-specialist- reader in clear prose. It contains a wealth of advice that is often ignored by professional investors who produce returns no better than a monkey throwing darts at random…the appeal of Vines’ book as a piece of investment advice is that it provides sensible counter arguments to trading strategies that have driven by market panics.’Far Eastern Economic Review

    • FOOD GURUS: 20 PEOPLE WHO CHANGED THE WAY WE EAT AND THINK ABOUT FOOD
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      ‘An intriguing dip into the lives and obsessions of an eclectic round up of ancient and modern food heroes whose tastes affect ours. Easy to digest, great recipes and some surprises.’Lindsey Bareham, Times cook and cookery books author

      ‘Stephen Vines choice of gurus is canny, amusing and well-researched, telling the reader not only about his heroes’ virtues but also their clay feet.’Paul Levy, co-author of The Official Foodie Handbook