Beijing has hinted that it may consider allowing Hong Kong's chief executive to be elected by universal suffrage in 2012, the South China Morning Post reported. State media quoted a leading official of the central government's liaison office in Hong Kong as saying that current Chief Executive Donald Tsang was correct in his judgment that the public was in favor of a direction election in five years. Tsang had earlier reported to Beijing that while people were behind the move, introducing it in 2017 offered the best chance of securing majority backing. The state media news release came out half an hour before the chief executive met with 21 pan-democrat lawmakers and informed them that Beijing would give "active consideration" to his judgment. The Politburo Standing Committee will consider Tsang's report next week.