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RESIDENTS LEAVE HONG KONG - DEAD OR ALIVE

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Even the dead appear to be trying to get out of Hong Kong before the British colony reverts to Chinese rule in 1997.

Live migrants are leaving in the tens of thousands, fearing the territory's days are numbered as a freewheeling capitalist paradise.These fears are also having an impact on Hong Kong's undertakers, at least one of whom now offers cemetery plots overseas for wealthy Chinese clients.

Robert Leung, director of the Universal Funeral Parlor, says his company can arrange burial sites in Canada, a favored destination for Hong Kong migrants.

"Land is cheap in Canada and you can get better surroundings," said Leung.