Daily Information Bulletin - 1990s - 1995 - JUN - ENG





 DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

Thursday, June 1,1995

Contents Page No.

Transcript of media session by Director of Administration................. 1

Governor’s question-and-answer session in LegCo........................... 2

Governor's media session on proposals to beat drug....................... 17

Environmental Impact Assessment Bill discussed........................... 20

Governor receives report on anti-drugs proposals......................... 22

Investigation into aircraft accident taking place........................ 24

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Bill gazetted......................................... 24

Research provides the basis for policy formulation....................... 26

Appointments to the Securities and Futures Commission.................... 27

Board to review Outline Zoning Plan...................................... 28

Mui Wo Fringe Outline Zoning Plan published.............................. 28

Notice for removal of grave.............................................. 30

Allocation of spectrum to mobile radiotelephone operators................ 31

/Board amends.....

Contents

Page No,

Board amends Mid-Levels West Outline Zoning Plan........................ 32

Nominations from nine specified arts interests invited.................. 33

Improvement road works in Tai Po and Sheung Shui proposed............... 34

Access for refuse transfer vessels...................................... 35

Two lots of land up for auction.......................................   35

Tuen Mun Bus Only Lane trial scheme..................................... 36

Home Affairs Department expands performance pledge...................... 37

Oral English help from native youths.................................... 38

Four VMs return home voluntarily........................................ 39

Firing practice scheduled for eight days in June........................ 39

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations.................... 40

Friday, June 2,1995

Contents Page No,

Working gorup to discuss measures to prevent shark attack........... 41

Sha Tin and Ma On Shan to get salt water for flushing................... 42

1

Transcript of media session by Director of Administration *****

Following is the transcript of the media session by the Director of Administration, Mr Richard Hoare, after the Joint Liaison Group expert talks on the Court of Final Appeal on June 1, 1995:

Hoare: I am sorry to keep you all waiting. It’s been a long day for us as well as you. As Mr Chen has said, today the British side gave a positive response to the package of proposals that he put to us two days ago. And the situation is now that we are waiting for, or we will be waiting for Chinese’s response to our positive response so to speak, and as Mr Chen has said, we hope that this would be forthcoming next week.

Q: Does this mean you are holding more talks?

Hoare: That’s correct. That's Mr Chen has said.

Q: We did not understand Mr Chen, so.....

Hoare: Yes, as Mr Chen said, we hope to have the Chinese response next week, and then we will then obviously meet again to discuss that.

Q: inaudible ....

Hoare: We don’t have any specific date yet for that meeting. I'm afraid there’s nothing else I can say to you at this stage.

Q: What are the difficulties left at this stage? Will the Government put forward the Bill on schedule this month?

Hoare: I’m afraid I can’t make any more comment at this stage. Thank you.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

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Governor’s question-and-answer session in LegCo ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a transcript of the question-and-answer session by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, in the Legislative Council today (Thursday):

Governor: Mr President, I'd like to begin by saying a few words about the Court of Final Appeal. When we proposed the Court of Final Appeal as one of the topics for discussion this afternoon, we had anticipated that this week's expert talks would have finished by now. A? Members will know they were originally scheduled to last for two days, and we'd anticipated as well that I would therefore be able to report to the Council in broad terms what progress had been made. However, as Honourable Members may know, the talks are continuing today and indeed are taking place as I speak. In these circumstances I'm sure that Members will recognise that I'll need to be more than usually constrained, a polite word, in what I say on this topic this afternoon.

It's been our objective all along, as Members know, to proceed with a Court of Final Appeal Bill with China's agreement. We're engaged in detailed talks with the Chinese side to that end. I very much hope they will bear fruit. Members have urged the Administration to proceed with the Bill as soon as possible. So we have a common purpose in this respect at least. I would not wish anything said this afternoon to prejudice the possibility of a successful outcome to the talks in any way and I'm sure that Members would share that wish. However, I do of course recognise this Council's understandable desire to be kept closely informed of developments on this important issue. I can assure Members that the Administration will make a full statement on the outcome of the talks the moment we are in a position to do so.

Mr Lee Cheuk-yan (through interpreter): Thank you, Mr President. In the recent Hang Seng Report, an authoritative report, it indicates that this year the unemployment rate in Hong Kong will be 3.2 per cent and the report is of the view that imported workers compete for jobs with local workers. Therefore, various parties are concerned about unemployment rate pushed high up because of imported labour and we have been having workers being laid off.

So will the Government consider taking the following steps immediately: first, announcing immediately that for the general importation of labour scheme, it will be suspended immediately so that of the 25,000 imported workers, they will fade out in two years' time? And at present we have some 4,000 imported workers whose employers have already got a quota but they have not been imported into Hong Kong yet. Will the Governor immediately take action so that these imported workers will not be imported into Hong Kong? Thank you, Mr President.

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Governor: I’m not so naive as to suggest that there is no relationship between the overall level of unemployment in Hong Kong and the importation of workers to Hong Kong, but nor am I so naive as to believe that there is a precise relationship between the importation of labour and the level of unemployment. In the early 80s when unemployment was far higher in Hong Kong than it is today, there was no importation of labour scheme, which is one example out of many of the fact that there are other reasons for the recent unwelcome increase in unemployment in Hong Kong and that we need to take, if I may say so, a rather more comprehensive view of the issue than is being suggested by the Honourable Member. Because if we were merely to follow his prescription I think we could finish up seeing unemployment continue to rise. We wouldn't be addressing some of the real issues.

Why is unemployment going up at the moment? I think there are two principal reasons and the one aggravates the other. First of all, there’s been a slow down in consumer spending for a variety of reasons, into which we can go later if Honourable Members would like, and that has had an impact on employment in retailing, in interior decoration, in the catering industry and similar activities. Secondly, that has happened while there continues to be industrial restructuring in Hong Kong with some firms, particularly in the manufacturing sector but also in the service sector today, moving jobs to mainland China or elsewhere. Those two factors are, I believe, the main reasons for the level of unemployment in Hong Kong. There’s also of course a mismatch between the jobless and the job vacancies. We have jobless figures of about 80,000, job vacancy figures of about 60,000 but we’re not moving the jobless to the vacancies as adroitly and swiftly as any of us would like.

There are a range of issues that we have got to look at therefore in the areas of illegal immigration, in the area of abuse by foreign domestic helpers of their employment in Hong Kong. We’ve got to look at job placement, we’ve got to look at retraining and training and we’ve also, as I’ve made clear to the Honourable Member, we’ve also got to look at the importation of labour as well. We’ve proposed two measures. First of all we were previously under an obligation to review the general importation scheme by the end of the year. We’ve brought that review forward by three months, if we can do it more rapidly than that we will and we’ll of course be discussing the outcome with the LegCo Manpower Panel and with the LAB in due course. Secondly, we've said that until that review is complete, they’ll be no new quota allocated and that we’ve made abundantly clear, both to employers and to unions as well. I don’t think that it would be sensible to suspend the general importation scheme before we’ve completed that review and I don’t think it would be sensible to break what amount to contractual agreements already made with employers who are bringing in labour under the last quota.

But there are concerns expressed by unions about the way the scheme works. Some of those concerns have also been expressed by employers representatives. There are concerns about occasional abuses of the system. We have to look at those points in particular but we also have to look at the long-term relationship between the importation of labour and Hong Kong's competitiveness. What would be absolutely senseless would be to take short-term measures for short-term political gain at longterm economic cost to the community and I don't think that would be to anybody's advantage.

Mr Lee Cheuk-yan (through interpreter): I heard that we're going to have comprehensive strategies to tackle unemployment. Now I would like to know what immediately would be done? I just want to know what will the immediate measures be? In particular, next week we're going to have a summit, will the Government have any new proposals?

Governor: The principal purpose of that summit will be twofold and the purposes are similar to those of previous summit's we have had on subjects like the transport needs of those with disabilities, the employment needs of those will disabilities, drug abuse, all of which have, I think, proved worthwhile and have helped us to shape comprehensive strategies in those areas. The first purpose of the meeting I've called for next week is to try to develop a dialogue between the Administration, employers and unions, so that we can have a serious discussion rather than a shouting match over what is to the whole community an extremely important issue. I hope that we can promote a dialogue. I know that one or two Honourable Members have been suggesting this for some time rather than provoke an argument. Secondly, we will, of course, put forward our thoughts but we hope that unions and employers will put forward their ideas too. We don't think that we have a monopoly of wisdom in this area. We do think there are steps that we have to take straight away. I've mentioned some of them in the areas of job placement, in the areas of retraining. We have to take tougher measures against those who at present are working illegally. Those are all measures that we have to take as a matter of urgency but I hope in taking those measures and others, we won't lose sight of the overwhelming importance of retaining Hong Kong's competitiveness because unless we do that we'll see unemployment rising higher than it is today and that's something that all of us want to avoid.

Mr Henry Tang: Mr President, Governor, good afternoon. My question regards voter registration in the 21 old functional constituencies. I am sure today is the last day for registration as a voter and I do not expect that registration of the 21 old functional constituencies, with the exception of those who do not have to re-register, such as teachers, will be ideal. In fact it is substantially less than ideal. And I think there are a couple of reasons - and I also have a question after it.

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I think one of the reasons is, for those working persons, about 2.7 million working persons who are in Hong Kong, are now registered under the nine new functional constituencies, and they all received this letter urging them to register in the old 21 FCs. And I don't know whether you personally have read this letter or not but this letter is mentally challenging, to say the least. My wife has a university degree; she received one of these - she read it twice and couldn't understand what it was talking about. So, she brought it home to me and I supposedly know quite a lot about this; I read it twice and I had to call up the enquiry number to make sure my understanding is correct. So I do urge you to read it, I think it will make very interesting reading.

But the result of it is that because it is a very confusing letter, so a lot of people just simply don't understand what is required of them, because what is required of them is positive action, not negative action like the nine new functionals. The nine new functionals, if a person is already a registered voter and the employer enters his r name on the roster, then he needs to do nothing. He receives a letter from the Electoral Office saying that he . is now registered in one of the nine new functionals. But at the same time, everybody in the old functional constituencies, the 21, have been cancelled, so therefore you have to take positive action to re-register yourself in one of the 21 old functionals.

Now, in some of the old functionals there's actually an accumulation of three elections, from 1985, 1988 and 1991, so therefore, first of all, why does the Electoral Office actually expect that an accumulation of three elections, of three registration exercises, what is the reason for cancelling, just taking everybody off the Electoral Roll, rather than just sending a letter to those who are registered in two - one of the old ones and one of the new ones - and asking them to elect which one do you wish to register in?

Governor: I won't dwell on some of the inherent virtues and perhaps difficulties of a system of functional constituencies, though I know that some Honourable Members, particularly one whose body-language we all much appreciate, have strong views on this subject. But if I can say at the outset, what I think has been interesting about the voter registration in the functional constituencies is that where we were told we would be facing insuperable problems, things have gone reasonably well. Not as well as anybody could have liked because everybody would like a hundred per cent registration, but things have actually gone reasonable well. Where, apparently, there was no difficulty or problem there have been larger challenges, including mental challenges. In the new functional constituencies we will have registered - which given that the geographical registration has to be, I think, the basis for our Electoral Roll -we will have registered somewhere around 900,000, maybe rather more when the books are finally closed. What that will actually mean is that with the older functional constituencies we will have about a million registered, which is I think fourteen times as many as were registered in functional constituencies the last time there were elections, which I regard - I'm sure everybody regards - as a welcome increase in participation by the community in voting in Hong Kong.

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If one then turns to the older functional constituencies, the problem isn't quite, I think, as the Honourable Member mentioned, because the problem arises not in all the older functional constituencies but in those functional constituencies where previously there was corporate voting and we have insisted on individual voting. In the old functional constituencies where there was and remains individual voting, registration is higher; higher for doctors, higher for teachers, higher for all those other groups like engineers and accountants. I think in almost every sector the number who have actually registered to vote has increased. In some of the constituencies where there was corporate voting before, for example the one covering social welfare, the one covering labour, the number looks as though it will be higher. The problem arises in about half-a-dozen of the old functional constituencies where some Honourable Members used to complain, understandably, about the consequences of corporate voting, for example one person having the opportunity of casting many votes, and about the complications of multiple directorships.

I think that what the problems that we have encountered indicate above all, maybe that we need to look even harder at the way we explain the electoral arrangements in these constituencies. But what I think these problems with about half-a-dozen constituencies have underlined is how right we were to change the voting system where previously there was corporate voting, to individual voting. Because I think the scale of what may have been happening before is manifest when you compare the electoral registers. We have made considerable efforts in some of the industrial and commercial constituencies to which the Honourable Member referred, with Members of this Honourable Chamber, to actually encourage people to vote, and very often, I think we have not been able to succeed not because of the complexities involved but because of the fact that some of the directors of many companies haven't actually resided in Hong Kong for seven years. I think that one or two Honourable Members could give us some anecdotal evidence about what was done to register corporately in one or two constituencies in the last elections, not always with the objectives achieved that people had in mind.

But what I emphasise - what I emphasise - is that where we have individual voting in those older constituencies, following on from previous individual voting, the figures look encouraging. The problem is with half-a-dozen constituencies. We've tried very hard to spread the good news about what is now available - for bankers, for companies in the tourist industry, for the commercial and industrial constituencies which are represented in this Chamber, and if the results aren't as good as we would like, while I am sure that we have lessons to learn about communication, I think the real problems lie elsewhere.

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I would just add one other word. At every stage, in the last couple of years, at every stage of our electoral cycle, people have said that we'd fall flat on our face. We had District Board Elections on a wholly democratic basis for the first time, and what was the result? More people voted in District Board Elections than ever before in Hong Kong. We had Municipal Council Elections for the first time on the basis of total democracy, and what was the result? More people voted in Municipal Council Elections than had ever voted in Municipal Council Elections before in Hong Kong. I'm sure that the Legislative Council Elections this September will be equally successful, even if not everybody in this Chamber is equally successfill. And part of the credit for that should go to Mr Justice Woo and his colleagues on the Boundary and Election Commission who have, I think, done a superb job in often difficult circumstances and have done that job while retaining the respect of the whole community. We have, in Hong Kong, incredibly complicated electoral arrangements. It is part of our unique intellectually exciting progress towards democratisation, and after 1997, when the community can move swiftly to total democracy, it will all be much easier. In the meantime, with the Election Committee, with the functional constituencies, with registration across the board which attempts to be fair all round, there are complications but it is a mark of the maturity and good sense of the people of Hong Kong that they make these arrangements work so successfully. And nobody should be surprised that more and more and more of them wish to go and cast their ballots. '

Mr Henry Tang: Mr President, Governor, actually, what you have mentioned about the old corporate voting, it's actually not a company who walked into the Electoral Office and cast its vote - but rather a nominee of the corporation - and this nominee -

Governor: They sometimes cast more than one vote.

Mr Henry Tang: Yes. No, actually he only had one vote. If he cast his vote in one of the old FCs, then he cannot cast his vote for another company in another FC, he can only vote once in the FC - unless he's an engineer, then he can have another vote in the engineering one. Actually, I do put it to you that that person is a real person of the company, so that person is already a registered voter. So there is actually very little reason to remove that person or to de-register him in this new exercise, because effectively, having deregistered him, if he were it is very likely that he will now become a new functional - the nine new functional voters - rather than the bld one, simply because he would have to take positive action to become an old one rather than remain as a new one.

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Governor: I am prepared to follow this slightly archaic point with the Honourable Gentleman outside the Chamber, but I think what he is suggesting is that whereas for other functional constituencies it would still be necessary to be on the geographical roll in order to be a functional constituency voter, in the old corporate constituencies I think the Honourable Member is suggesting that people should automatically be on the functional constituency register if they were on it before. One of the problems is that some of those who were clearly on the Corporate Voting Register before, don't qualify, for other reasons, to vote in Hong Kong. I think that has turned out to be a problem in a number of those constituencies. I assure the Honourable Member that while we are always happy to learn - and that goes, I know, for the BEC - they have tried very hard in those old functional constituencies, where the problem should inherently be less considerable than in the new functional constituencies. They have worked phones, they have written letters, they have contacted individual business organisations and individual LegCo Members. But it is interesting, at the end of the day we have found it easier to register 900,000 plus people in the new functional constituencies than to register a few thousand in the old Corporate Functional Constituencies, and that, I think, raises a number of exceptionally interesting questions.

Mr Ngai Shiu-kit: According to the official data the average registration rate of new functional constituencies is 40 per cent. That is far from the authorities' expectation. Is the Governor satisfied with this registration rate? Does the low registration rate mean that the election will lack representiveness?

Governor: Well, as I said a moment or two ago, any democrat like me would like to see 100 per cent registration and anything less than that is regrettable. What we've seen in Hong Kong in the geographical constituencies is a substantial increase in registration and we've set out to register in these functional constituencies and in my judgement, the Boundary and Election Commission have done pretty well to get as high as they have.

There are difficulties in carrying through the task. Not least because you have to be on the geographical register in order to qualify for a functional constituency vote. I don't think that's unreasonable. It's been the situation since 1985. We haven't started it afresh but what is fair? At the end of polling day, 14 times as many people will have had a chance in 1995 of voting in functional constituencies as voted in functional constituencies in 1991. I think that represents a considerable advance. We'll have about a million people voting in those functional constituencies, maybe a few more, maybe a few less and I hope it will be many more in functional constituency elections thereafter.

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Mr Michael Ho (through interpreter): Mr President, I would like to ask a question that is related to my motion debate on itemised charges for hospital fees. The Secretary for Health and Welfare said something that was rather puzzling. The Secretary said that the median household income will be used as the basis for calculation of fees for hospitals. For those who have high income, they may have to pay itemised charges. I can offer a copy of the reply to the Governor for reference. For such a way of charging, it differs very greatly from the existing practice in principal. At present the hospital maintenance fee includes everything. If in future we have itemised charges and if the median household income is to be used as the basis for calculation, then too many low income families they’ll have to pay high medical fees.

Mr Governor, I know that on the part of the Government it is debating the subject behind closed doors. There will not be another public consultation exercise on the subject. So Mr Governor, how can you set the mind of LegCo Members and members of the public at ease? We know that in September, after discussion in the Branch, how can we ensure that the proposal that comes out then will not mean that even those who are poor will have to pay itemised charges? Because at present for the median household income, it is at quite a low level. Many people cannot afford expensive medical fees.

Governor: 1 wasn’t expecting to answer a question about itemised charges this afternoon but with my customary generosity of spirit I’m delighted to take this opportunity of answering and I hope not avoiding the Honourable Gentleman's question. I would just like to commend him for his good fortune yesterday. I understand the fact that I called a meeting at Government House in the early evening meant that he won his debate rather than lost it by one vote. I'm assuming of course, I hope correctly, that the three Government Members would have voted for the Administration.

The Honourable Member has raised a serious point and we’ve been trying to address it in two ways. First of all. by looking at those groups which can be particularly disadvantaged financially by a regime of charges. People like the chronically ill. Secondly, we’ve been considering ways in which existing resources, for example, through the Samaritan Fund, can be used to alleviate the burden of charges on some people who find themselves facing unexpectedly large bills for medical treatment. In deciding on the best way forward we’ll, of course, want to take account of the views expressed in the Legislative Council yesterday. We'll of course want to take account of the views expressed outside this Chamber, for example the recent petition and we'll want to take account of the views of the Hospital Authority.

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I don't think that this Council would be wise to argue for completely eliminating charges. I suspect that in this community, as in others over the coming years, we're going to find ourselves faced with the difficult consequences of a growing financial burden for health care and a growing reluctance on the part of the community to actually pay what is required for the technological and other advances in health care and I don't think it would be sensible to completely eliminate one small resource which helps to finance health care at the moment, that is charges. I think it makes more sense to try to rationalise charges and to ensure that nobody who is in need is either prevented from receiving medical treatment because of cost or is financially crippled as a result of needing medical treatment because of the high cost of charges. We must try to strike a balance but I think that balance would have been best struck in the amendment which unfortunately my honourable friends didn't have the opportunity of voting for yesterday.

Mr Michael Ho (through interpreter): Mr President, first of all I would like to thank the Governor for his support for my motion yesterday. Well yesterday night I learnt about the reply and 1 felt that there would be a change in the policy, that's why I asked the Governor the question today.

Now, as regards the concept of itemised medical charges I would like to say that we arc now going to turn the collective responsibilities at present to a burden that is to be shared by individual households. 1 want to have a public consultation exercise on this change of policy. Can you tell me, from now on to September you will ask relevant government departments to conduct some kind of public consultation?

Governor: Well of course we're taking account of the views of the public, we're taking account of the views of the Hospital Authority and others. Unless we listen to what the community is saying we won't be able to come off with a policy in the Autumn which has the broadest possible support. What we all know, is that nobody much cares for charges for anything but we do have to find a way of funding the continuing development and improvement of our health service and at the margins, and it is at the margins, charges will I'm sure continue to have a role to play. But I repeat what I said earlier about the importance of dealing with particular groups and particular individuals in need, both by policy changes and by the resources allocated through things like the Samaritan Fund.

Dr Yeung Sum (through interpreter): Thank you. Mr President. As regards electoral registration, there may not be an increase in the number of registered voters but there is an increase in the number of people unemployed I ast night a bank announced 3.2% as the unemployment rate. I think it is just reasonable for us to stop importation of labour. I think the Governor should check what his officials said in the past. His officials somehow said that unemployment was not related to importation of labour. So I really hope that the Government will stop importing labour.

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I

Now in your policy address in the coming October, I hope you will consider some points. Can the Government take the lead to employ certain retrained workers, because the Government is the biggest employer in Hong Kong? If you can take that lead you can encourage more people to follow suit. That is to employ retrained workers. Can you consider that?

Secondly, financial support. Can you relax the eligibility criterion for CSSA and can you also increase the CSSA amount? So can you consider moving in those two directions?

Governor: 1 gave quite a long, conceivably excessively long, answer on unemployment and the importation of labour earlier, so I don’t want to repeat any of those points that I made. But while I know from looking at the press, from what people say to me, from the anecdotes I hear from Honourable Members and others, while I know that there is a gut feeling in the community that the rise in unemployment has something to do with the level of importation of labour, I do beg this Chamber not to take quite such a simplistic view. I don’t believe there is a precise mechanistic relationship between the importation of labour and the level of unemployment. If you look at the figures for the importation of labour, I think you will find that under the general scheme there’s actually been a fall in the number of workers in Hong Kong at the same time as unemployment itself has been rising. I don’t seek to argue that there is no relationship between import of labour and unemployment but I don’t think the relationship is quite as precise as some of the political arguments suggest.

The Honourable Member is entirely correct to draw attention to the importance of retraining and I think, if I may say so, that it's a particular challenge and particularly important for female employment in the labour market. If the Government were to particularly prioritise in taking on one group of workers or another, I don’t quite understand how it would increase the total number who were employed. There's only a finite number of people who can be employed by Government and this Council would rightly criticise the Government if we took on more than were needed to discharge public services. If we prioritise one particular group it doesn't create more jobs. It merely redistributes jobs around the community. But we should give as much encouragement as possible to retraining and the best way of encouraging retraining is to make sure that we're retraining people for real jobs rather than retraining them for jobs that alas don’t exist. That’s why we want to try to tailor-make retraining and relate it much more closely to job vacancies and I think we have to work with unions and employers to accomplish that objective.

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On CSSAs. I think the Honourable Member would be surprised, though doubtless gratified, if I were to announce this afternoon what I intend to say in my speech to the Legislative Council in the autumn. But my honourable friend, the Financial Secretary, has been discussing the next Budget with Honourable Members, I think we have an idea of the priority which many Honourable Members attach to CSSAs and I think Honourable Members must have some notion themselves of the fiscal parameters within which we work and intend to continue to work as a matter of good macro-economics and prudent financial management. But 1 think that all I can say beyond that is that the Honourable Member should watch this space.

Dr Yeung Sum (through interpreter): Well Mr President, in that case the Government doesn't have any concrete solution for the unemployed workers. The Government is always talking about reviews and reviews which have become a procrastinating tactic. So are we being told that we are to wait for the outcome of reviews calmly?

!

Governor: Well, I hope that whatever the Honourable Member and others do will be calm. I am challenged by the Honourable Member to repeat myself. There are things that we’re doing and not just considering doing. There are actions we're taking and not just matters that we're reviewing. We're extending the job placement scheme from five local employment services to all nine local employment services across Hong Kong. It's a scheme that we only started recently. It's a scheme that we started with the intention of monitoring it and seeing if it needed to be extended later, but we've decided to extend it straightaway to the whole of the community and we hope that it puts more people in touch with job vacancies more rapidly. Secondly, we're attempting to relate retraining to vacancies in our existing programmes and I want to make it clear to the Honourable Member that so far as I'm concerned and so far as we're concerned, none of our efforts in the retraining field will be constrained by shortage of resources. Thirdly, wc'vc doubled the number of people who were involved in trying to catch those who are illegally employed and we've also sharpened the penalties, stiffened the penalties for illegal employment. So those arc three measures that have been taken straightaway and we intend to take more.

In the longer term what is the answer to the continuing export of some manufacturing and service jobs to other places in the region and to mainland China? The answer isn't to stop that process any more than it would have been five years or 10 years or 20 years ago. The answer is to try to ensure that we re-skill and upgrade the skills of the Hong Kong workforce and remain a competitive environment for investors and that we intend to do.

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Hong Kong has gone through an industrial restructuring, a move from being a primarily manufacturing economy to a primarily service based economy without any of the high unemployment or long-term unemployment or social upheaval that has occurred in other similar developing economies or other developed economies and I want to see us continue to apply those lessons here in Hong Kong. I'm told that it's not just manufacturing industry or the more sophisticated service industries which have been exported. I'm told that now the majority of the "dim sum" that are eaten in Hong Kong are actually made outside Hong Kong, are actually made in mainland China. When that is happening it's a reminder of the importance of us being competitive in every sector and that must be the principal priority of the Government. But I want to repeat something I said earlier. 1 recognise the real passionate concern that Honourable Members, like the Honourable Member who has asked the question, feel about unemployment even though unemployment by international standards is, thank god, reasonably low. That is no argument for complacency; it's every argument for the Administration listening carefully to people like the Honourable Member and trying to convince him and others that the approach we're taking is the right one.

Miss Christine Loh: Thank you, Mr President. Governor, I would like to ask you a question on the Court of Final Appeal, knowing that discussions are on-going. However, I think you are well aware that the last sitting of this Council is going to be I think on the 26th July. Today is the 1st June. Many Members here have not actually had the benefit of really scrutinising the existing draft and if you are successful in negotiating something with the Chinese then presumably there will be areas of amendment. What do you think is the last day you can bring a Bill to us giving us still sufficient time to scrutinise the Bill during this session?

Governor: That's a very fair question to which I'm going to respond at a level of generality which the Honourable Member may not regard as entirely satisfactory. Soon.

Miss Christine Loh: Well. Governor, I think we can kind of also work backwards. But even if you were to gazette the Bill, let's say next week, and we expedite the hearing process, I mean you know we are already talking about perhaps the second week of June, so with time for CSA and so on, at the very most you're not going to give us more than three or four weeks effectively, maybe four weeks, to look at the Bill, if you brought it next week. But since you gave me such a short answer, perhaps the President would allow another question for me to make up.

I'm wondering, in your attempts to go back to the negotiating table you've decided to accept rather than to say you would consider some of the suggestions by the Preliminary Working Committee. You certainly did not afford this Council the same courtesy of asking us. So I'm just wondering why you would accept the PWC's suggestions straightaway without ever bothering even to come to us to consult us?

14

Governor: Can I add to soon, we would have liked to have been able to bring the Bill to this Council a great deal earlier. I would have liked to have brought the Bill to the Council back in February or March. The reason that we haven't is because, and I had the impression from the debate recently that this is perhaps an objective which most Honourable Members share, we didn't bring the Bill to the Council because we hadn't yet got the endorsement of the Chinese side for a Bill which in our judgement faithfully reflects the 1991 agreement. I would greatly prefer, the Chief Secretary would greatly prefer, the whole community would greatly prefer to be in a position in which we can legislate on a basis of consensus. But what I think this Chamber and I hope the community feels, is that we can't go on like this indefinitely and that's why we've made it absolutely clear that we intend to put legislation before this Council in this session.

On the Honourable Member's other point. In all the legislation that we bring forward we take account of views that are put by this Legislative Council and we don't always need a formal exchange with the Council in order to have a pretty clear idea of what its views are. We had, I'm bound to say much to my predecessor’s and my chagrin, the initial views of the Council on the 1991 agreement in 1991. We've had the views of the Council more recently. We've taken account of the views of the legal profession which have often reflected the views of some individual Legislative Council Members. So I don't think that we can be accused of having closed our ears and eyes to the debate that's been going on in the community about the Court of Final Appeal. At the end of the day I hope that we can go ahead with a Bill which has the broadest possible support in ensuring that Hong Kong continues to enjoy a jurisdiction similar, the same, as that at present discharged by the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. That's my simple objective. Working within the context of the agreement between Britain and China in 1991.

Mrs Peggy Lam: (through interpreter) Thank you Mr President. Mr Governor, all along you have been saying that the Hong Kong Government is an open and fair government that treats people fairly and equally. But recently, some residents feel that that is not borne out by certain facts. The question is: in Hong Kong we do have cottage areas - I don't know whether the areas of cottage areas should be included in this session but a moment ago, the Governor allowed Mr Ho to ask a question outside . the five topics, so my question is as follows.

In Ching Man Tsuen and Wesley Village we have cottage areas, and recently, because of dangerous slopes in the vicinity, the Government asked the occupiers to move out. But when they move out they don't get compensation. For these people, they purchased their accommodation several decades ago. Their accommodation was put up by churches to accommodate fire victims and so on but then the residents purchased their accommodation but now the Government asked them to move out, but no compensation will be paid and therefore many occupiers were not happy; they have been lodging complaints with us. So my question to the Governor is:

15

For Tiu Keng Leng or Rennie’s Mill, for the cottage areas there the residents got ex gratia payments, so why is it that the same cannot be done for the residents in the areas I’ve mentioned. The residents have been living there happily for long periods of time and now they are asked to move out by the Government. In the beginning they purchased their accommodation. Why is it that no compensation is paid to them? So, Mr Governor, how can you tell these residents that the Hong Kong Government is fair and open?

Governor: The Honourable lady has demonstrated how unwise I was to answer the admiral question from Mr Ho. But just to show how open and fair I am, I will respond briefly to the Honourable lady in a way which I hope is eventually, if not initially helpful. The Honourable lady will know and will, I’m sure, have explained to her constituents, what the long-standing arrangements of the Hong Kong Government are for compensating those who are moved because of the requirements of resettlement policy or for other reasons. Most of my senior secretaries have spent parts of their public service career dealing with resettlement cases in various parts of the territory and will be as familiar as the Honourable lady is with the difficulties involved, not least because people always want more financial compensation than is offered; it’s part of the human story.

The particular problems associated with the cottage areas to which the Honourable lady refers have not, I have to confess, alas, been brought to my notice on previous occasions but I will write to the Honourable lady a comprehensive reply on the issue which I hope will satisfy her, and it would be nice if it satisfied those concerned as well but I will leave that to the formidable eloquence of the Honourable lady.

Dr C H Leong: Thank you Mr President. Governor, it would be ungentlemanly and perhaps not the right thing to ask you, are you happy with the Democratic Party and the itemised charges, or are you happy with the Administration, but I'm going to change the subject and I'm going to ask about, to follow up on what Mr Henry Tang has mentioned about elections and the registration of voters.

Mr Tang did mention and you answered rightly that there has been a lot of, perhaps, previous confusion which has been settled in the so-called corporate votes. But even in the older functional constituencies which are concerned with individual voting there are lots of, perhaps, areas which have not been settled and which have produced a lot of problems. I am referring to my own older functional - not the oldest profession - the older professional constituency.

16

Because of the fact that doctors also belong to the public service and because of the fact that a lot of doctors, basically, are employees - for example they are employees of the Hospital Authority - a lot of them are therefore listed for one reason or another into the ninth new functional constituency. The result is that even up to a few weeks ago there were still some 4,000 registered doctors and dentists who were not yet registered. I wonder if the Governor would consider looking at this and extend the date of registration so that some of these could be ironed out. On my part we have been sending out letters to them to clarify the matter and 1 think Government has done the same thing, but still there is a lot of confusion.

Governor: Despite that, I know that the Honourable Member will be pleased that the registration in a constituency whose perceptiveness and wisdom in electoral matters I’m sure the Honourable Member would endorse, that registration in that constituency is up by about ten per cent in the overall figure, from last time. Where members of a profession or another group could vote in more than one functional constituency, the Honourable Member knows the arrangements which arc open to them. It may be that we need to look at those arrangements anew after this election and try to make them even more user or voter friendly. But I think there arc quite strong arguments against extending the registration period beyond June I because we are only a couple of months away - yes, a couple of months away - from nominations opening for the LegCo Elections and I think that people, frankly, will want to get on with the job of preparing for those elections without having a longer period for registration. But we may need to look at the arrangements for the future.

Dr C I I Leong: Thank you Mr President. I would just like to remind the Governor that ten per cent is a very small number in my constituency simply because of the fact that there has been a lot of new graduates since the last registration. After all, there was no voting in 1991.

Governor: That is perfectly true, though I doubt whether there arc many, except the very brightest of the Honourable Member's constituents, who have come on to the Register as doctors because of our reduction in the voting age from 21 to IX But we will certainly look at the points that the Honourable Member made.

Mr Roger Luk: Thank you Mr President. My question is on employment. Governor, the focus of retraining has been on assisting displaced manufacturing workers to take up employment in the service sector. But with the recent developments in the service sector, in particular the closure of major hotels and department stores, will the Government review the retraining policy in this light?

17

Governor: Yes, certainly. We do need to ensure that retraining deals adequately with the needs of an economy which is now so heavily service based. It doesn't mean that manufacturing isn't important. I suppose about 14% of our workforce is still working in manufacturing. But given the importance of services to the economy, we have to make sure that retraining reflects that. And if I may say so, in reviewing the Labour Importation Scheme we have to consider what is happening in both manufacturing employment and service employment. So I hope we can be as positive and sensible as the Honourable Member has suggested.

End/Thursday, June 1. 1995

Governor's media session on proposals to beat drug ♦ * ♦ ♦ ♦

The following is a transcript of the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten's media session after receiving a report on proposals to beat drugs today (Thursday):

Governor: Good afternoon. As you know, at the Drug Summit that I hold in March, we set out details of our Thirty Million Programme for beating drugs. We set out our ideas in a number of areas: law enforcement, preventive education, treatment and rehabilitation and research. But we didn't just set out our own ideas, we asked for other people's and the participants at the Summit gave us over 90 ideas of their own for continuing the campaign more comprehensively against drug abuse in Hong Kong.

I said at the time that 1 would ask the Chairman of ACAN and the Commissioner for Narcolies to look al those proposals as a matter of urgency and report back to me within three months, and I am delighted to say that they have done that in rather more rapid time than we had expected. We've got their report today and they will be publishing it and letting you have copies, letting everyone involved in the Campaign Against Drug Abuse have copies, and I think they are giving a briefing in the Commissioner's office for those of you who wish to attend later on this afternoon.

They set out. endorsed by ACAN. their views on how we can pick up some of the ideas that were put at the Summit. Some of them arc ideas for Government, some of them arc ideas for Government and Voluntary Agencies, some of them are ideas for Voluntary Agencies themselves, but they arc another indication of the fact that all of us have a contribution we can make to this campaign.

18

I am delighted that this afternoon Andy Lau is making clear his own commitment to our Beat Drugs Campaign and that is something which will be welcomed. There is a role for everyone in the community in this important campaign.

In the document which you will see there are a number of proposals we are intending to take forward. For example, an improvement and an enhancement of education about drugs in our schools, targeting more of our efforts and activities on those children who we think may be particularly at risk, and - and it is an issue that was raised with me at one of our rehabilitation centres recently - we are also going to ensure that young people who have recovered from drug-abuse are able to slip back into the school system more easily than has been the case in the recent past.

Some of the ideas that we are putting forward involved reallocating resources or using resources more effectively. Some may involve new resources and we will be taking account of those bids for additional financial assistance in our public expenditure discussions within Government. There is one particular proposal which I know has attracted a great deal of interest and that is the suggestion that we should set up an anti-drugs fund, a special fund to help to finance activities in our Beat Drugs Campaign. And it is further suggested that we should put into that fund the confiscated assets of those who have been found guilty of drug-running and so on, that we should put the results of their confiscated assets into a fund to deal with drug-abuse and to fund anti-drug activities. There are problems with that proposal, some of which were referred to at the Summit. For example, it is not a very sure way of financing a fund. But nevertheless, we think the idea of a fund has a good deal of inherent merit and we are proposing to come back ourselves with a workable proposal for a fund as soon as we can. So we want to take that idea forward positively.

I will, of course, be continuing to take an active interest in the work that is done by the Commissioner, by ACAN and by others. We are, I think, putting together a good and comprehensive programme but it needs a great deal of energy and drive from ail concerned and I will continue to make visits to activities associated with the Beat Drugs Campaign, one of the features of my diary, in the coming weeks and months.

Question: How real a possibility is it that confiscated assets from drugs could be rediverted into this fund and what will the fund be made up of (inaudible)?

Governor: it is a real possibility but as your question implies, topping-up a fund with an amount of cash which is by definition variable, doesn't have all the certainty which is required if you are using a fund for recurrent financing or for providing cash to support projects in a regular way. So we need to look at the other basis for a fund. But 1 do think that there are attractions and merits in the idea, so we are going to try to work out how it could work positively and we are very pleased that ACAN themselves are going to look at the idea and give us the benefit of their advice.

19

Question: Do you think that a workable solution might be to have a concrete basis for a fund and then for it to be toppcd-up by confiscated assets?

Governor: 1 think that is one of the ways forward. That is one of the ways we need to look at.

Question: Do you think it might have a considerable effect on the morale of law enforcement agencies (inaudible) and agencies as well, if the direct proceeds of (inaudible)?

Governor: Yes I do. 1 think one of the attractions of the idea of using confiscated assets in that way is to allow people to see, not least those in the law enforcement area, that there is a direct and positive effect of their activities, not just in locking-up criminals and those people who engage in this obscene trade, but also actually providing some positive assistance for those who are suffering.

Question: It occurs to me there is going to be an increase in the current Government expenditure on a regular basis for agencies involved (inaudible)

Governor: That is what we are considering as part of our public expenditure discussions.

Question: How much more money?

Governor: That is what we are considering as part of our public expenditure discussions.

Question: So where (inaudible) to provide the basis for this fund? What kind of sources would (inaudible)?

Governor: Government is one of them but there may be others as well. But I don't want to give you a comprehensive reply on that until we have heard from ACAN who are themselves looking at it at the moment and I want to get the benefit of their advice. But I would just like to underline the point that this campaign is for the Government, as it is 1 believe for the community, a real priority, and that when you have got a priority like this you have - to use a rather vulgar expression - to put your money where your mouth is.

Question: Do you think the dmg problem is very serious in the territory right now?

20

Governor: 1 think the problem has been getting worse. It is not as serious as it is in some other communities but that is no reason for complacency, because the figures in particular for drug-abuse by the young, have risen and are worrying and that is one of the reasons why we have given the campaign this priority. And it is one of the reasons as well, why we are delighted that somebody with all the prestige of Andy Lau is associating himself in a very positive way with the campaign.

Question: Considering all these proposals when will the Government make a final decision?

Governor: The final decision, I suppose, will be in our public expenditure discussions this summer. But you will see that quite a lot of these ideas involve other people as well as the Government, so I think it will be an ongoing business.

Question: Bearing in mind that (inaudible) two years (inaudible) are there any guarantees (inaudible)?

Governor: We have to carry the community with us, we have to carry neighbourhoods with us. It is a problem that we have experienced, not just in this area, it is a problem we have also experienced, as you know, in carrying through as rapidly as we wanted our programme to help those with handicaps. But I'm sure we will get there.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Environmental Impact Assessment Bill discussed *****

The Land and Building Advisory Committee (LABC) held its 37th meeting today (Thursday) and discussed the proposed Environmental Impact Assessment Bill.

Chaired by Mr Cheng Hon-kwan, the Committee was briefed that the bill sought to make it a requirement that an Environmental Permit should be issued by the Director of Environmental Protection for a list of Designated Projects considered to be of significant environmental impact.

The project proponent should prepare an Initial Environmental Report based on which the Director of Environmental Protection would determine the environmental acceptability of the project and whether a detailed Environmental Impact Assessment study would be required.

21

To carry out Designated Projects without a Permit, or not in accordance with the conditions on the Permit would be liable to a maximum fine of $5 million and a custodial sentence.

It was expected the bill would be introduced to the Legislative Council in late 1995.

Members were also briefed on the Buildings (Amendment) (No.2) Bill 1995 which was introduced to the Legislative Council yesterday (Wednesday). The bill seeks to introduce new measures to ensure safety on construction and demolition sites.

The bill also provides for a new system of registration for contractors in two categories: general and specialist. A key requirement will be that the contractors' qualifications, experience and competence will be assessed by a statutory committee, whose membership will include representatives of the concerned industry associations and professional bodies. In addition, registration will be personal to an individual.

The Committee noted that although the professions and the industry welcomed the clearer definition of statutory duties among the parties concerned, it was concerned that amendment should be extremely well considered so as not to confuse or distort the balance of duties and responsibilities between the Authorised Person, Registered Contractor and Owner.

Noting the Director of Buildings' undertaking to consult all parties concerned on details, the Committee set up an ad hoc committee under the chairmanship of the Deputy Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands to facilitate early dialogue.

The Committee was also briefed on the recommendations on the streamlining of the Town Planning Board procedures.

These recommendations included the setting up of committees to hear objections to Outline Zoning Plans, the provision of a legal adviser in Town Planning Board meetings, the establishment of an independent Secretariat and expansion of the Secretariat.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

22

Governor receives report on anti-drugs proposals

*****

The Government is considering the idea of setting up a special fund for financing anti-drugs activities, the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, said today (Thursday).

This was one of the 92 proposals put forward by participants at a summit meeting on drugs held on March 6. It would build on the $30 million 26-point package announced by the Governor at the end of the summit.

All the proposals made at the summit meeting have been studied carefully by a special action group led by the Chairman of the Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN), Professor C N Chen, and the Commissioner for Narcotics, Mr Alasdair Sinclair.

Professor Chen and Mr Sinclair today presented to the Governor a report on the results of their examination of the proposals.

. • . - I. . < •

The Governor welcomed the report which, he said, outlined the sensible and worthwhile nature of many of the proposals and suggested how they might be taken forward.

He pledged to keep a very close watch on progress of the Government's consideration of the recommendations in the report.

Mr Patten noted that the report had suggested that a special drugs fund could be financed by recycling confiscated assets.

"This is not straightforward, not least because of the unpredictable nature of topping up a fund on this basis. But we will look at this idea again, together with other possible ways of financing a special fund; and we will certainly come up with a clear and workable proposal," he said.

"I understand that ACAN will be examining this recommendation at their meeting later this month," he said: "I would very much welcome any further views they may have."

The 92 proposals put forward at the summit meeting comprise 17 on law enforcement, 44 on preventive education, 18 on treatment and rehabilitation, and 13 on research.

23 >.i

’> .fr

After receiving the report in person from Professor Chen and Mr Sinclair at the Government House today, the Governor commented: "I am most grateful to ACAN and others for putting together the report so quickly."

Examples given by the Governor of action to be taken by Government stemming from the report were:

* Promoting preventive drug education in schools and checking that it is provided. n«.

* Identifying children at risk and making sure that preventive programmes are targeted at them. ; i .

Ensuring that young people recovering from drug abuse are able to reenter the school system if they wish to do so.

Other recommendations in the report included providing factual information on drug abuse and trafficking to every school in the territory.

A recommendation was also made on the need to ensure that children and young people undergoing residential treatment and rehabilitation did not miss out on their education.

The Governor said: "I will be asking my officials in the relevant branches and departments of government to let me have detailed proposals for future action across the board. I will make sure that all those who attended the summit are kept in the picture on progress.

"As far as Government action is concerned, we will be taking the proposals forward energetically."

"We cannot afford to ease up on the growing problem of drug abuse. If we keep at it, we can beat it," Mr Patten stressed.

End/Thursday,June 1, 1995 ■' ....

24

Investigation into aircraft accident taking place ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Director of Civil Aviation, Mr Peter Lok Kung-nam, who is also the Chief Inspector of Accidents announced today (Thursday) that an Inspector's investigation was taking place into the cause of the serious accident which occurred on May 28 (Sunday) at the Hong Kong International Airport to a Boeing 747-400 aircraft VR-HOX registered and operated by Cathay Pacific Airways.

A public notice will be published in the local press calling for representations on the cause of the mishap.

On Sunday night shortly after take-off, the Frankfurt-bound aircraft returned to the airport when its No. 2 engine caught fire.

Any persons interested in making representation as to the circumstances or cause of the incident should write to the Chief Inspector of Accidents c/o The Civil Aviation Department, 46th Floor, Queensway Government Offices, 66 Queensway within 14 days of the notice.

Alternatively, they can telephone the department's Investigation Team at 2769 8896 within a fortnight.

• '■ t

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Bill gazetted ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Government gazetted today (Thursday) the Wong Wai Tsak Tong (Renewal and Extension of Sub-leases) Bill.

The Bill seeks to resolve the disputes between the Wong Wai Tsak Tong and its sub-lessees on Cheung Chau by regulating the relationship between the two parties.

The Bill proposes that all sub-leases which expire before the commencement of the legislation and in the past had been registered in the Land Registry, will be deemed to have been renewed from the date of expiry.

New sub-leases will be deemed to be granted from the date of commencement of the legislation to June 27, 2047.

25

The Bill also proposes that government rent will payable directly to the Government by the sub-lessees whose sub-leases are renewed under the Bill.

From July 1, 1997, the government rent will be set at three per cent of the rateable value of the property as provided in Annex III to the Joint Declaration.

Certain sub-leases are excluded from the renewal and payment of government rent provisions. These are sub-leases which have been granted or renewed for terms extending beyond November 9 last year and under which the Tong and the sub-lessee have agreed on the amount of rent payable to the Tong after June 30, 1997.

These sub-leases are excluded because the Government does not see the need to interfere with private contracts freely entered into.

In addition, the Bill proposes that the Director of Lands may approve applications from sub-lessees for modifications and exchanges of the sub-leased land.

Unless the Tong puts forward valid grounds of objection, it will be deemed to have agreed to the application and will be entitled to charge sub-lessees an amount equal to 10 per cent of the premium payable to the Government in respect of the modifications and exchanges.

If the Bill is enacted, sub-lessees will have certainty as to their sub-leases through to June 27, 2047. They will pay government rent direct to the Government.

The Tong will not be able to delay development proposals requiring modifications and exchanges. As a result, the source of much of the friction between the sub- lessees and the Tong should be removed.

A Government spokesman said: ’’The Bill provides an objective, practical and fair solution to the disputes between the Tong and its sub-lessees. It will be introduced to the Legislative Council on June 7, 1995.”

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

26

Research provides the basis for policy formulation ♦ ♦ ♦ * ♦

The Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) regards research as providing the indispensable basis for effective policy formulation, the Commissioner for Narcotics, Mr Alasdair Sinclair, said today (Thursday).

"Throwing money at the drug problem, or any other problem, is unlikely to achieve very much unless you understand the problem and know what sort of action stands the best chance of succeeding," he said.

In a speech entitled "Understanding illicit drug abuse: the search for solutions" delivered at a luncheon meeting hosted by the Rotary Club of Hong Kong North, Mr Sinclair said Hong Kong was fortunate to have a very good Central Registry of Drug Abuse, one of the most comprehensive and longest established in the world.

The Commissioner revealed that among other research projects to be started this year by the Research Sub- committee of ACAN would be a study to review treatment programmes.

"The outcome of the study will help ACAN to advise on the future direction of service provision," he said.

"There are many different treatment programmes in Hong Kong, run by a variety of government and non-govemment organisations, adopting a number of approaches.

"We will be looking at their objectives, their modes of operation, the characteristics of their clients, and their performance."

However, Mr Sinclair noted that as each programme had its own objectives, it was not meaningful to draw up a league table of success rates.

"We prefer to examine rehabilitation programmes in a wider perspective without going into relative effectiveness," he said.

Mr Sinclair said there were six other research projects being planned for the year. They are:

* a study of drug progression patterns;

* an analysis of the characteristics of methadone patients;

27

a follow-up study of former clients of the Society for the Aid and Rehabilitation of Drug Abusers;

a study of female drug abusers;

a comparison of the drug abuse situation in Hong Kong and selected countries in the region and in the west; and

* an evaluation of the impact of anti-drug messages presented at school talks.

The Research Sub-committee is set up under AC AN to identify and conduct research projects which will be helpful for policy development and to monitor relevant research carried out by other agencies, locally and overseas.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Appointments to the Securities and Futures Commission

*****

The Financial Secretary is pleased to appoint Messrs Paul Gallagher, Liang Xiao-ting, Leong Ka-chai and Patrick Wang as members of the Advisory Committee to the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) from June 1, 1995, to May 31, 1997, the Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, announced today (Thursday).

Eight of the current members are re-appointed for a further term. They are Messrs Henry Cheng Kar-shun, Henry Cheong Ying-chcw, Victor L L Chu, Henry Fan Hung-ling, Paul Fan Chor-ho, Philip J S Gray, Kevin A Westley and Dr Alex Wu Shu-chih.

The appointments have been made by the Financial Secretary acting under delegated authority from the Governor in respect of section 10 of the SFC Ordinance.

The membership of the Advisory Committee also includes two executive directors appointed by the SFC, while the Chairman of the SFC presides at the Committee’s meetings.

28

"The members are drawn from a cross-section of the securities and futures industries, as well as other professional fields, to advise the SFC on matters of policy and market development," Mr Cartland said.

Mr Cartland also thanked the retiring members, Messrs Richard Margolis, Wataru Yamaguchi, Lincoln Yung and Zhou Zhen-xing for their work on the Committee.

"Their contribution to the SFC has been greatly appreciated by all at the Commission and in the Administration," Mr Cartland said.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Board to review Outline Zoning Plan *****

The Governor-in-Council has referred the Tsing Yi Outline Zoning Plan (No. S/TY/10) to the Town Planning Board for further consideration and amendments to take account of changing circumstances and the latest planning proposals, a spokesman for the Board announced today (Thursday).

The plan was last approved by the Govemor-in-Council last year.

"The Board will revise the plan, which, after incorporating the latest amendments, will be exhibited for public inspection in due course," the spokesman said.

End/Thursday. June I. 1995

Mui Wo Fringe Outline Zoning Plan published

* * * * ♦

The Town Planning Board today (Thursday) announced the publication of the draft Mui Wo Fringe Outline Zoning Plan (No. S/I-MWFH).

’’The plan area, which is about 242 hectares, is currently covered by the approved Mui Wo Fringe Development Permission Area Plan.

29

"The Outline Zoning Plan replaces the Development Permission Area Plan and provides a more detailed framework for the use and development of the land in the Mui Wo fringe area." a spokesman for the Board said.

On the plan, about 12 hectares of land have been zoned "Village Type Development". They include four recognised indigenous villages of Pak Ngan Heung. Mui Wo Kau Tsuen. Tai Tei Tong and Luk Tei Tong, as well as their adjoining land for village expansion.

Meanwhile, about 27 hectares of land have been zoned "Residential (Group D)". Within this zone, redevelopment of the existing temporary domestic accommodations with permanent materials is encouraged for general upgrading of the living environment.

To safeguard good quality agricultural land currently under active farming and to promote rehabilitation of good quality fallowed farmland, about 28 hectares of land have been zoned "Agriculture".

To encourage developments of active recreation and tourism in the Mui Wo fringe area which is already a popular holiday spot, about 18 hectares of land have been zoned "Recreation".

Another nine hectares of land have also been reserved for the development of local government and community facilities and open space to serve the population.

The remaining areas, measuring about 145 hectares, arc mainly well vegetated foothills and isolated knolls. They have been zoned "Green Belt" to reflect their existing character and to protect them from development.

The draft plan is available for public inspection until August I at:

* Planning Department, 16th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road, Hong Kong

♦ Lantau and Islands District Planning Office.

10th floor. Leighton Centre.

Leighton Road. Causeway Bay, Hong Kong; and

* Islands District Office,

20th floor. Harbour Building.

Pier Road. Central. Hong Kong

30

Any person affected by the draft plan may submit written objection to the Secretary of the Town Planning Board, c/o Planning Department, 13th floor, Murray Building before August 1.

Copies of the draft plan can be bought at the Survey and Mapping Office, Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, and the Kowloon Map Sales Office, ground floor, 382 Nathan Road, Kowloon.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Notice for removal of grave

*****

The Government posted today (Thursday) Crown Land Ordinance Notice on the twin Tang clan grave at Nim Wan which has to be moved for the construction of the West New Territories (WENT) Landfill.

The Notice requires any occupier of the land upon which the Tang grave is located to cease such occupation before June 30, 1995.

A Government spokesman said: "If the grave is not removed before June 30, 1995, it will be liable to removal by Government without further notice."

He rejected suggestions that the removal of the grave would be in breach of the laws of Hong Kong and said: "The grave has to be removed to make way for the WENT Landfill and this is not the first time that a grave has had to be removed for a public works project."

The spokesman expressed the hope that the Government might still come to an agreement with the fangs for voluntary removal of the grave.

He said Government representatives would be happy to discuss the relocation of the grave to an alternative site with their representatives.

He added that the Government had also offered to make ex-gratia payment of about $1.7 million to enable the villagers to relocate the grave.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

31

Allocation of spectrum to mobile radiotelephone operators ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Telecommunications Authority (TA), Mr Alexander Arena, announced today (Thursday) that he had decided to allocate two blocks of 0.6 MHz of cellular spectrum to each of the existing four Public Mobile Radiotelephone Services (PMRS) operators: Hutchison Telephone Co Ltd, Hong Kong I elecom CSL Ltd, Pacific Link Communications Ltd and SmarTone Mobile Communications Ltd.

This allocation is temporary, being for one year from July 1, 1995 to June 30, 1996 in order to meet the consumer demand and to maintain, and improve, the quality of service provided to customers.

"The cellular services in Hong Kong have now passed half a million customers. With a growth rate of four to five per cent per month, more than 20,000 new customers are joining cellular service every month," Mr Arena said.

"However, under the current spectrum plan, there is no available spectrum in the existing PMRS frequency bands to cater for this growth in demand.

"In fact the current plan calls for two blocks of 2.65 MHz of spectrum to be returned by operators on June 30, 1995. This returned spectrum will now be divided up and re-allocated to each operator to alleviate congestion problems.

"Since the temporary allocation of spectrum to the existing PMRS operators will be for one year to mid-1996 and all operators have to adhere to the original spectrum transition plan from the year 1996 to 2000, the up-coming Personal Communications Services should not be unduly affected when they begin to launch commercial service following licensing later this year. The temporary arrangement should be welcomed by the existing customers and the industry as a whole."

A statement has been issued by the TA on this temporary allocation of spectrum and may be obtained from the Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA) (telephone: 2961 6624. fax: 2803 5112) or by dialing into the electronic bulletin board service of OFTA (telephone: 2834 0119).

End/Thursday, June 1. 1995

32

Board amends Mid-Levels West Outline Zoning Plan * * * ♦ *

The Town Planning Board today (Thursday) announced amendments to the draft Mid-Levels West Outline Zoning Plan (No. S/Hl 1/6).

The amendments include the rezoning of four sites of about 0.6 hectare in total around Prince’s Terrace and Castle Steps area from ’’Residential (Group A)” to ’’Residential (Group C)7” in order to restrict development or redevelopment to a maximum plot ratio of five and a maximum building height of 12 storeys.

The restriction is considered necessary from the view points of traffic, fire safety and convenience because the area has no direct vehicular access.

Technical amendments to the notes of the plan have also been made to take into account the changing circumstances.

The amendment plan (No. S/H11/7) is available for public inspection until June 22 at:

Planning Department, 16th floQr, Murray Building, Garden Road, Hong Kong;

* Hong Kong District Planning Office, 11th floor, Leighton Centre, 77 Leighton Road, Hong Kong; and

Central and Western District Office,

Public Enquiry Service Centre, ground floor, Harbour Building, 38 Pier Road, Hong Kong.

Any person affected by the amendment plan may submit written objection to the Secretary of the Town Planning Board, c/o Planning Department, 13th floor, Murray Building before June 22.

Copies of the draft plan can be bought at the Survey and Mapping Office, Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, and the Kowloon Map Sales Office, ground floor, 382 Nathan Road. Kowloon.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

33

Nominations from nine specified arts interests invited * ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Hong Kong Arts Development Council Ordinance enacted by the Legislative Council on May 3 this year comes into effect today (Thursday).

Under the ordinance, the Council shall consist of a chairman, a vice-chairman, 16 other non-official members each of whom shall be appointed by the Governor, and four ex-officio members.

The 16 non-official members may include up to nine persons nominated by arts organisations for consideration for appointment by the Governor.

The ordinance also enables the Governor to specify, by notice in the Gazette, up to nine organisations or groups of organisations each of which shall be representative of nine specified categories of arts interests, namely: literary arts, music, dance, drama, visual arts, film arts, arts administration, arts education and arts criticism.

A spokesman for the Recreation and Culture Branch noted that the arts community would take some time to organise themselves and to complete the entire specification and nomination process. The Government will also need time to evaluate and process the results.

"It has therefore been decided that for the first term of office of the Council, the Chairman. Vice-Chairman and the 16 other members should all be appointed directly by the Governor for a period of seven months with effect from June 1.

"The Council's second term of office will be for two years commencing from January I, 1996. At that time, it is intended to include up to nine members who will have been nominated by each of the up to nine specified organisations," he added.

Applications are now invited for consideration for specification by the Governor as one of the nine specified organisations or groups of organisations.

Applications should include those documents and evidence which are relevant to the criteria as set out in paragraph 5 of the "Guidelines for Representative Arts Organisations and for their nominees for membership of the Council" issued by the Recreation and Culture Branch early last month.

34

Enquiries on matters relating to specification can be directed to Assistant Secretary for Recreation and Culture Mr Raymond Tam on tel 2594 5614 (fax 2802 4893) or to Executive Officer (Culture) Mr Benedict Wong on tel 2594 5622.

Applications should be submitted to the Secretary for Recreation and Culture (Attn: Mr Benedict Wong), Recreation and Culture Branch, 40th floor, Revenue Tower, 5 Gloucester Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, on or before August 31.

To answer any questions relating to the nomination process, the Recreation and Culture Branch will organise a public forum on June 28 this year.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Improvement road works in Tai Po and Sheung Shui proposed * * * * *

The Government proposes to improve the existing approach roads to Nam Wa Po Bridge, Tai Po, as part of the programme for the Rural Planning and Improvement Strategy.

The works involve realignment and reconstruction of about 160 metres of the approach roads, provision of footpath and construction of related drainage and landscaping works.

The plan and scheme showing the proposed works can be seen at the Central and Western District Office, Central Enquiry Service Centre, ground floor, Harbour Building, 38 Pier Road, Central; and at the Tai Po District Lands Office and the Tai Po District Office, both located in Tai Po Government Offices Building, Ting Kok Road, Tai Po, New Territories.

Meanwhile, the Government is also proposing improving the existing access road at Ying Pun, Sheung Shui.

A notice for the proposed works can be seen on the notice boards posted near the site.

The plans of the proposed undertaking can also be seen at the Central and Western District Office, Public Enquiry Services Centre, ground floor, Harbour Building, 38 Pier Road; and at the District Lands Office. North, and the North District Office, both located in North District Government Offices, 3 Pik Fung Road, Fanling.

35

Details of the proposed works in Tai Po and Sheung Shui are notified in the Government Gazette today.

Any person wishing to object the works must send his objection in writing to the Secretary for Transport on or before July 31.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Access for refuse transfer vessels ♦ ♦ ♦ * ♦

The Government has proposed carrying out minor dredging and constructing a new jetty in the foreshore and seabed to the north-east of Tai Lei Island near Peng Chau to provide berthing facilities and access for refuse transfer vessels.

The dredging work will start early next year for completion in mid-1997.

The extent of the area affected is gazetted today (Thursday).

The notice and its related plans can be seen on notice boards near the site.

The plan can also be seen at the Lands Department’s Survey and Mapping Office, 14th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road; and at the Islands District Office, 20th floor, Harbour Building, 38 Pier Road, Central.

Any person who considers that his interest, right or casement in or over the foreshore and seabed involved will be affected, may submit a written objection to the Director of Lands on or before August 1.

End/Thursday, June I, 1995

Two lots of land up for auction *****

Two lots of Government land on Hong Kong Island and the New Territories will be offered for sale at a public auction on June 28 (Wednesday), it was notified in the Gazette today (Thursday).

The auction will start at 2.30 pm in the Concert Hall of the City Hall.

36

The first lot, located in Shau Kei Wan Main Street East, Shau Kei Wan, has an area of 1,296 square metres for non-industrial purposes, excluding godown, hotel, petrol filling station and service apartment. In particular, the lowest three floors will be for non-industrial purposes while the remaining floors for residential use.

The developer has to complete a gross floor area of not less than 6,690 square metres on or before June 30, 1998.

Located in Area 30, Tai Po, the second lot has an area of 26,310 square metres for private residential use.

The developer has to complete a gross floor area of not less than 12,628 square metres on or before June, 30, 1999.

Full particulars and conditions of sale may be obtained from the Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road; and the District Lands Offices, Kowloon, Yau Ma Tei Car park Building, 10th floor, 250 Shanghai Street, Kowloon.

Conditions of sale will also be available at the District Lands Offices of Sha Tin, Tuen Mun, Yuen Long, Tsuen Wan, Sai Kung, Kwai Tsing, Tai Po, North and Islands.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Tuen Mun Bus Only Lane trial scheme *****

In response to press enquiries, a spokesman for the Transport Department said today (Thursday) that the Tuen Mun Road Bus Only Lane trial scheme is still in force in its present form until further notice.

Vehicles from Castle Peak Road arc still not allowed to join Tuen Mun Road Kowloon bound at Siu Lam Interchange and Tuen Mun Road both bounds at Sham Tseng Interchange.

The date for implementing the modified trial scheme in relation to the traffic management at Sham Tseng Interchange has yet to be fixed pending installation of appropriate traffic signs and other measures. An announcement on the implementation of the modified trial scheme will be made in due course.

End/Thursday. June 1, 1995

37

Home Affairs Department expands performance pledge *****

The Home Affairs Department (HAD) will implement the performance pledge on its sub-treasury service starting today (Thursday).

This is an expansion of the performance pledge on the department's public enquiry service which was first put into effect in April 1993.

The performance pledge covers the collection service of the sub-treasuries. The standard waiting time for customers to make payment is targeted at four minutes during non-peak periods and 35 minutes during peak periods.

HAD has set up sub-treasuries in eight district offices in the New Territories. They are located in Kwai Tsing, North, Sai Kung, Sha Tin, Tuen Mun, Tai Po, Tsuen Wan and Yuen Long.

These offices accept payments for rates. Crown rents, water charges, sewage charges, trade effluent surcharges, student loan repayments, fixed penalty for traffic offences and other government demand note payments.

Their opening hours are from 9 am to 1 pm and 2 pm to 4 pm on weekdays and 9 am to 11.30 am on Saturdays.

Performance of the sub-treasuries will be monitored against targets set out in the performance pledge. An opinion survey will be conducted annually to obtain public feedback and results will be published.

Comments or suggestions on HAD's sub-treasury service are welcome. These should be addressed to the Senior Executive Officer, Establishment and General Section. Home Affairs Department, 29th floor, Southom Centre, 130 Hennessy Road, Wan Chai.

End/Thursday, June 1. 1995

38

Oral English help from native youths *****

The Deputy Director of Education, Miss Elaine Chung, today (Thursday) said she was impressed by an English programme which employed native youths from the United Kingdom and North America to help local secondary school students improve oral English.

Miss Chung visited the Hong Kong Chinese Women's Club College to see for herself the progress of the Chatteris English Programme which received funding from the Language Fund.

The Chatteris English Programme, which will expand over three years, aims at providing opportunities for secondary school students to learn and speak English outside the classroom by placing native English-speaking youths as English Language Teaching Assistants (ELTAs) in secondary schools.

The programme received $4.95 million from the Language Fund. The amount pays for over 50 per cent of the costs of the programme.

After her visit, Miss Chung said: "The programme is very innovative. It provides students with valuable chances to contact native speakers in small group tuition which is lacking in Hong Kong. Students have lots of fun in learning English because they learn in a relaxed environment.

"It is a pleasurable and effective way of encouraging students to actively take part in achieving higher standards of oral English. It not only complements, but also reinforces the regular school curriculum."

Miss Chung paid tribute to the Chatteris Educational Foundation for taking concrete steps to enhance English proficiency in Hong Kong.

In early 1995, eight ELTAs were employed. It is expected that the number of ELTAs will increase to 32 in September next year so that a minimum of 16 schools with a total of 16.000 students will benefit from the programme.

Five schools took part in the 1994-95 programme.

End/Thursday. June 1, 1995

39

Four VMs return home voluntarily ♦ ♦ * ♦ ♦

Four Vietnamese Migrants today (Thursday) returned to Vietnam under the Voluntary Repatriation Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Comprising two men, one woman and a boy, they were the 231st batch to go back under the programme.

The group brought to 805 the total number of Vietnamese Migrants who had returned voluntarily this year, and to 44,999 the total number of returnees since the programme started in March 1989.

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

Firing practice scheduled for eight days in June ♦ ♦ * * ♦

Firing practice will take place at the Ha Tsuen/Castle Peak Range on eight days this month.

The public is advised not to enter the area when red flags are hoisted.

Following are the dates and times for the firing practice:

Date Time

June 1 (Thursday) June 5 (Monday) June 6 (Tuesday) June 12 (Monday) June 21 (Wednesday) June 22 (Thursday) June 23 (Friday) June 24 (Saturday) 8.30 am - 5 pm 8.30 am - 5 pm 8.30 am - 5 pm 8.30 am - 5 pm 9 am - 11.59 pm 9 am - 11.59 pm 9 am - 11.59 pm 9 am - 11.59 pm

End/Thursday. June 1. 1995

40

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change (Smillion)

Opening balance in the account 2,333 0930 +170

Closing balance in the account 2,383 1000 +170

Change attributable to : 1100 +190

Money market activity +195 1200 +190

LAF today -145 1500 +195

1600 +195

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.8 *+0.7* 1.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.67 2 years 2705 6.40 100.74 6.08

1 month 5.68 3 years 3804 6.90 101.62 6.38

3 months 5.71 5 years 5003 7.75 103.69 6.95

6 months 5.75 5 years M501 7.90 101.92 7.57

12 months 5.82

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $13,669 million

Closed June 1, 1995

End/Thursday, June 1, 1995

41

Working group to discuss measures to prevent shark attack ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The inter-departmental working group on shark attack had met today to discuss measures to prevent shark attack on swimmers, following shark sightings and a shark attack in Sai Kung today (Friday).

Shark warning flags have been hoisted at all the eight gazetted Regional Council beaches in the Sai Kung area.

After the hoisting of the shark warning flags, the public are advised not to enter into the water in these gazetted beaches.

Notices have also been put up in those beaches and announcements have been broadcast to alert swimmers to stay out of the water.

The life guards in these beaches have been alerted to advise swimmers not to swim in the water.

The Police will patrol other areas in Sai Kung to advise people engaged in water activities not to go into the water.

The Government Flying Service will also continue to patrol the area.

The eight beaches are Campers, Clear Water Bay 1st and 2nd beach, Hap Mun Bay. Kiu Tsui. Pak Sha Chau, Sliverstrand and Trio.

A Government spokesman advised the public not to enter into the water whether inside or outside the gazetted beaches in the Sai Kung area. They should also be very cautious when they engage in water activities elsewhere. They should not enter into the water in the early morning or in the evening, fhey should also avoid murky water, and listen to announcements.

*

Both the Regional Services Department and the Urban Services Department have already displayed notices on gazetted beaches notifying the public of the shark attack incident in the Sai Kung area. Posters on shark attack prevention have also been displayed to alert swimmers.

All life guards on Regional Council and Urban Council beaches have been have been on full alert to watch out for sharks. Motor boats are patrolling around the boomline area and the surveillance operation will be strengthened.

End/Friday. June 2. 1995

. *

- 42 -

Sha Tin and Ma On Shan to get salt water for flushing * * * ♦ ♦

Works to convert the existing supply of fresh water to salt water for flushing in Sha Tin and Ma On Shan will start later this month for completion by October in three phases, a spokesman for the Water Supplies Department said today (Friday).

Works include the disconnection of fresh water supply to the cunent flushing water system, and the subsequent connection of salt water supply to the system.

"During the works period, flushing water supply will be temporarily suspended for less than 24 hours to facilitate supply conversion.

"Enquiries can be made by calling a 24-hour hotline 2656 2368," the spokesman said.

Phase one works are scheduled to start on June 21 for completion on the next day. This phase will affect areas to the west of Shing Mun River, including the Sha Tin sewage treatment plant, the Hong Kong Sports Institute, Fo Tan, Sui Wo Court, Wo Che Estate, Lek Yuen Estate, Sha Tin Town Centre and Man Lai Court.

Notices will be posted on the estates or buildings affected in advance to minimise the inconvenience that may be caused.

End/Friday, June 2, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

Monday, June 5,1995

Contents Page No,

Surveillance on shark attacks to remain in force.......................... 1

Governor: protect the fabric that sustains our lives...................... 2

JLG expert talks on Hong Kong's Intellectual Property System.............. 3

Complaint of insects in tap. water being looked into...................... 3

Computerisation improves Government's service............................. 4

Subsidy scheme deadline extended.......................................... 5

Silver plates presented to lawyers and law clerks......................... 6

Tender for fourth issue of 5-year Exchange Fund Notes..................... 7

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations...................... 9

- I -

Surveillance on shark attacks to remain in force

♦ ♦ ♦ * *

The inter-departmental working group on shark attacks, chaired by the acting Deputy Secretary for Recreation and Culture, Mr Ian Petersen, convened a second special meeting this (Monday) afternoon to reassess the current shark situation in Hong Kong.

The meeting was attended by representatives from the Urban Services Department, Regional Services Department, the Agriculture and Fisheries Department, the Police, as well as experts from the University of Hong Kong and the Ocean Park Corporation.

After a two-hour meeting, consensus was reached:

* to maintain the existing alert, surveillance and warnings about sharks at appropriate gazetted beaches managed by the Urban Services and Regional Services departments;

* not to conduct any shark hunt as it may create a false sense of security among the swimming public and is unlikely to be effective given the disturbance likely to be caused by other interested parties. In addition, whether or not any shark is caught, others may still be in the area and the conduct of the hunt may also actually attract more sharks into the area. Furthermore, people's lives may be put at risk in the process;

* to consider consulting overseas experts to analyse the information the working group has to date; and

* to produce a new television and radio API to publicise the danger of entering the water at this time.

Members of the group urged the public not to enter the water anywhere at Sai Kung at present.

"We arc disturbed that our warnings in this regard arc still being ignored." Mr Petersen said.

"This is really regrettable as swimmers expose not only themselves to danger unnecessarily, but they also put at risk those who try to save them in case of emergency," he added.

2

The meeting also concluded that the following measures will continue to be taken at gazetted beaches of the two Municipal Councils as part of the surveillance operation:

surveillance by lifeguards from look-out posts at vantage points;

patrolling the water area beyond the boomlines with motor boats;

* maintaining air patrols by the Government Flying Services on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays during the swimming season; and

* ’ maintaining frequent patrols by Marine Police outside the boundaries of beaches.

The group will meet again in about a week's time to evaluate the situation at that time.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

Governor: protect the fabric that sustains our lives

*****

The Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, today (Monday) said people should get better at anticipating the consequences of daily activities on the environment.

Speaking at the World Environment Day, Mr Patten stressed that the environment was the fabric that sustained people's lives and every one had a part to play in maintaining the environment, in sustaining the fabric.

He said: "We must think about sustainability. The environment is not something separate, external from our lives, to think about only when we feel like it."

Mr Patten pointed out that the Environmental Time Capsule laid by the Environmental Campaign Committee five years ago was unearthed today for two purposes.

First is to see how much improvement has been made over the past five years and the second is to sec how perceptions of problems have been changed.

3

The problems of water pollution and overloaded sewers as well as air pollution identified five years ago have been addressed and some achievements have been made.

The problem of diesel emissions, unidentified for inclusion in the Time Capsule five years ago has now assumed a much higher profile.

This identification of new problems shows a change in perception and it is necessary to respond to those changes.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

JLG expert talks on Hong Kong’s Intellectual Property System *****

Expert talks between the British and Chinese sides of the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group on Hong Kong's Intellectual Proper!} System will be held in Hong Kong on June 6-7.

The British side will be led by the Hong Kong Government Director of Intellectual Property, Mr Stephen Selby. The Chinese side will be led by Chinese Representative, Mr Wang Weiyang. They will be assisted by experts from the two sides.

End/Monday. June 5. 1995

Complaint of insects in tap water being looked into

*****

Staff of the Water Supplies Department have taken water samples from a flat, the roof tank and the sump tank of On Chiu House, Cheung On Estate. Tsing Yi Island, this (Monday) morning for laboratory analysis following a complaint of insects being found in tap water.

"Chemical and bacteriological analysis of the water samples will be carried out in the department's water science laboratory and the results will be available in 24 hours.

4

"Visual inspection, however, showed no insect or other deposits in any of the samples," a spokesman for the department said.

He stressed that the water supplied to Cheung On Estate, which came from Yau Korn Tau Treatment Works, was fully treated and disinfected.

"The residual chlorine in the water will also inhibit the survival of bacteria in the distribution system," he added.

The Water Supplies Department assured consumers that the water supplied to them complied fully with the World Health Organisation's standards for drinking water and is safe for consumption.

"The quality of water supplied to consumers is closely monitored by regular and frequent testing of water samples taken from all strategic points of the water supply system, including water treatment works, service reservoirs, distribution pipeworks, sump and roof tanks of consumers' premises, and consumers' taps," the spokesman said.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

Computerisation improves Government's service

*****

The Government will be able to provide better service to the public with the opening of the second Production Bureau for mainframe computer application, the Director of Information Technology Services, Mr Lau Kam-hung, said.

At the opening ceremony of the new ITSD Production Bureau today (Monday), Mr Lau also stressed that with the significant increase in capacity was required, to set up a second Bureau would be more cost-effective.

The Second Production Bureau, situated in the Sai Kung Government Offices, is the extension of the department’s first Bureau in its Wan Chai Headquarters.

The facilities available in the new site greatly enhance the Government's total mainframe computer processing power. It also allows great flexibility in terms of future expansion, as the demand for computerisation in the government is rapidly increasing.

5

There are currently 16 major application systems using the facilities of the site by 11 Government departments or branches.

The operation of the site has been designed in such a way that a minimal number of operation staff is required to handle the daily activities. Through the communication devices, some of the operational related work has been redirected to the first Bureau, where the work can be handled or shared by other operation staff.

Mr Lau said operation of the second Bureau was smooth, but there had been some teething problems.

”1 can assure our client departments that every effort will be made to ensure the delivery service of our Bureau Services. I am pleased to say that both the suppliers of our equipment and our staff are dedicated to achieving this goal,” he said.

For those critical application systems, backup facilities are available in the Disaster Recovery Bureau.

Mr Lau said the Bureau will have to. in the event of a disaster, provide adequate resources to operate all the critical applications on the Production Bureau affected.

"Failure at one site would not affect the operation of the other site," he said.

The Second Production Bureau, officially opened today by the Secretary for the Treasury, Mr K C Kwong, is equipped with an IBM model 9121-621 central processor. The processing power is 58 Million Instruction Per Second and the total disk storage is 268 Giga bytes.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

Subsidy scheme deadline extended *****

Kindergarten operators who have missed the deadline to join the newly introduced kindergarten subsidy scheme are invited to submit their application now.

The closing date for submission has now been extended to June 16 (Friday).

6

Announcing the special arrangement today (Monday), the Deputy Director of Education, Miss Elaine Chung, said: "The extension is in response to views made by some kindergarten operators. They claimed that they required more time to study details of the new scheme."

Miss Chung noted that to facilitate more kindergarten operators to have a clear picture of the scheme, a further briefing session was being organised on Friday (June 9).

"It is hoped that through this arrangement, kindergarten operators would understand the advantages of this new scheme. The twin advantage is that kindergartens which have joined the new scheme will be able to boost competitiveness by reducing their fees, and at the same time reduce parents' burden," Miss Chung added.

She reiterated that the Education Department would closely monitor the operation of kindergartens starting next fall to ensure the stipulated requirements, such as 40 per cent kindergarten teachers should be trained and entry requirement should be Secondary 5 with passes in two subjects, were complied with.

She said: "This will apply to all kindergartens irrespective of whether they have joined the scheme."

As at the end of May, the Education Department received a total of 224 applications from kindergarten operators to join the subsidy scheme. Of these, 196 are non-profit making and the remaining arc profit-making kindergartens.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

Silver plates presented to lawyers and law clerks *****

An engineer who was acquitted of manslaughter had presented five silver plates today (Monday) to his legal representatives to express his gratitude.

The plates were given to his two counsel, Mr Rodney Pritchard and Mr Simon Westbrook, both assigned to defend him by the Director of Legal Aid. Legal Aid counsel Mr David Bryan and two law clerks of the Legal Aid Department. Mr Chang Hung-cheon and Mr John Chu Tak-wa.

7

Mr Wong, an assistant engineer with AJAX Engineers and Surveyors Ltd which was responsible for the safety of a passenger hoist installed in a North Point construction site, was charged with one count of manslaughter after an accident involving the hoist occured on September 2, 1993.

He was granted legal aid. He was originally represented by Mr Pritchard who, however, fell ill during the hearing at the High Court and the defence was taken over by Mr Westbrook.

At the end of the Crown's case. Mr Justice Duffy ruled that there was no case to answer and directed the jury to find Mr Wong not guilty of the offence on April 27.

The presentation of the silver plates took place today at the Headquarters of the Legal Aid Department in the present of the Director of Legal Aid, Lady Cheung, and a number of senior officers of the department.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

Tender for fourth issue of 5-year Exchange Fund Notes *****

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority announces today (Monday) that the tender for the fourth issue of five-year Exchange Fund Notes will be held on next Monday (June 12) for settlement on Tuesday (June 13).

Similar to the previous issue, an amount of HKS500 million five-year notes will be on offer.

In addition to that, another HKS100 million will be held as reserve by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority for supply to Market Makers in the secondary market.

The notes will mature on June 13, 2000 and will carry interest at the rate of 6.60 per cent per annum payable semi-annually in arrears.

Members of the public who wish to tender for the notes may do so through any of the Market Makers or Recognised Dealers on the published list which can be obtained from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority on 30th floor, 3 Garden Road, Hong Kong (or telephone 2878 8150).

8

Each tender must be for an amount of HK$50,000 or integral multiples thereof.

Note to Editors:

Following is a table giving detailed tender information:

HONG KONG MONETARY AUTHORITY EXCHANGE FUND NOTE PROGRAMME

TENDER INFORMATION

Tender information for the fourth issue of 5-Year Exchange Fund Notes

Issue Number : 5006

Tender Date and Time : Monday 12 June 1995, 9.30 am to 10.30 am

Issue and Settlement Date : Tuesday 13 June 1995

Amount on Offer : HKS500 million plus an additional HK$100 million as reserve stock for the Monetary Authority

Maturity : Five years

Maturity Date : 13 June 2000

Interest Rate : 6.60% per annum payable semi-annually in arrears

Interest Payment Dates : 13 Dec 1995, 13 Jun 1996, 13 Dec 1996, 13 Jun 1997, 15 Dec 1997, 15 Jun 1998, 14 Dec 1998. 14 Jun 1999. 13 Dec 1999. 13 Jun 2000

Tender Amount : Each tender must be for an amount of HK$50,000 or integral multiples thereof. Members of the public who wish to tender for the Notes may approach Market Makers or Recognized Dealers on the published list.

Other details : Please see Information Memorandum published or approach Market Makers or Recognized Dealers.

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

9

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ *

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change ($million)

Opening balance in the account 1,283 0930 + 1,225

Closing balance in the account 1,913 1000 +1,225

Change attributable to : 1100 +1,252

Money market activity +1,255 1200 +1,255

LAF today -625 1500 + 1,255

1600 +1,255

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 *+0.0* 5.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.43 2 years 2705 6.40 101.44 5.68

1 month 5.44 3 years 3804 6.90 102.67 5.97

3 months 5.44 5 years 5003 7.75 105.31 6.54

6 months 12 months 5.46 5.53 5 years M501 7.90 103.42 7.19

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $13,455 million

Closed June 5, 1995

End/Monday, June 5, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

Tuesday, June 6,1995

Contents EagfJ^

Governor announces measures to tackle unemployment................... 1

Transcript of Governor's meet-the-press session............................ 4

Local workers are given employment priority................................ 6

Government takes tough action against illegal workers...................... 7

Hong Kong's first API launched....................................... 8

Civil servants offered 9.98 to 10.14 per cent pay rise............... 10

Registration of social workers proposed.............................. 11

Further improvements in rehabilitation services endorsed............. 12

Trial scheme for cross-harbour taxi stands........................... 13

*

Water supply to On Chiu House clean and clear........................ 14

Schools administrators urged to be responsive........................ 15

Water storage figure................................................. 16

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results.......................... 17

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations................. 18

1

Governor announces measures to tackle unemployment ;(•> ♦ ♦ ♦ * *

':R ->«» » 1 .• • 1

The Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, today (Tuesday) announced a 13-point package of measures to tackle unemployment.

The package included short, medium and long term measures to crack down on illegal employment; step up job placement and retraining; review of the General Labour Importation Scheme; and obtain more detailed information in respect of the profile of the unemployed and the vacancies so as to improve future manpower planning.

Speaking after the summit meeting called to discuss employment issues, Mr ’ Patten Said the meeting had been extremely useful in that despite differences in opinions, there were common grounds that should be pursued.

' ‘ ' He called on employers and employees to focus on these common grounds and not allow the issue to polarise the community and sour Hong Kong's very good labour relations record.

' >! .. : I,

The summit was attended by more than 80 representatives of employees, employers and Legislative Council Members.

The measures announced by the Governor after the summit are:

Short term:

1. Clamp down on the illegal employment of illegal immigrants, foreign domestic helpers, two-way permit holders, etc. This will involve doubling the size of the Task Force of the Immigration Department from the existing 46 to 92 by the end of this year, so that more frequent operations can be conducted; and adding a fax line on top of the existing 24-hour hotline provided by the Immigration Department to make it earlier for the public to report complaints on illegal workers.

2. Step up enforcement actions against abuses of the labour importation schemes. To achieve this, the Labour Inspectorate of the Labour Department will conduct more vigorous inspections at both the places of employment and the accommodation of imported workers to guard against abuses.

2

3. Review the operation of the General Scheme to remove/minimise its perceived/real effects on the employment opportunities of local workers. The review will include all the operational aspects of the Scheme, including the quota ceiling, the types of workers permitted, the quota allocation formula as well as the vetting and monitoring procedures. The Government will also positively consider setting up a tripartite committee involving employers and employees on the importation of labour.

4. Obtain more detailed information of the profile of the unemployed and the profile of job vacancies. From October, the Government will double the current sample size of 13,500 households per quarter of its General Household Survey, and also include more items in the survey of vacancies.

5. Step up the employment service by expanding the Pilot Job Matching Programme to all Local Employment Services offices. The Government intends to:

i r. ’ . * . ’ '

* expand the Programme from five Local Employment Services (LES) offices to all the nine LES offices;

* add nine job matching teams comprising two persons each plus a team of

five staff responsible for promoting the Programme.

With the additional resources, the LES will be able to:

* increase the placement figures to about 100 placements per month;

* organise special recruitment forum for employers from particular sectors

once every month on average; and

make the service more outreaching and proactive.

6. Review the Employees Retraining Scheme so as to make it more placement focused, and ensure that the Employees Retraining Board (ERB) will have no resource constraints. The Employees Retraining Board will:

step up their placement service for retrainees so as to help ensure that retrainees can re-enter the workforce after retraining; and

* introduce an Outplacement service for retrenched workers by offering them on-site retraining assistance to facilitate them to take up altemati employment early.

plan to place up to 10,000 unemployed persons in jobs in the next 12 months.

3

Medium term:

7. Monitor the continuing structural change of Hong Kong's economy to identify the core group of displaced workers with low employability and its characteristics;

8. Monitor closely the relocation of jobs in the service sector;

9. Study whether discriminatory practices (e.g. age and sex discrimination) are contributing to rising unemployment;

10. Involve employers and employees in the monitoring of the labour importation scheme;

Long term:

11. Study the likely patterns of movement of local and imported workers into and out of Hong Kong which affect the size of Hong Kong's workforce;

12. Forecast the economic development and manpower requirements and formulate appropriate education, training and retraining policies accordingly; and

13. Explore ways to further improve productivity.

Closing the summit, Mr Patten said the Government should not start interfering in business and turn our back on all the virtues and benefits of a free economy. "We should instead aim for policies that preserve stability and social cohesion in Hong Kong, while retaining and sharpening the territory's competitive edge," he added.

Mr Patten said: "I want Hong Kong before and after 1997 to be a high wage, high growth, high employment and highly competitive economy."

The Governor announced that as a result of today's summit, the Government will be following up on many of the practical and positive ideas put forward, in particular those relating to the skills gap and information gap relating to the overall problem.

He also announced that a similar meeting will be held in the early autumn of those involved in the summit to discuss the interim findings and conclusions reached as result of the review of the Labour Importation Scheme.

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

4

Transcript of Governor's meet-the-press session * * * * *

Following is the transcript of the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten's meet-the-press session after the Summit on Employment today (Tuesday):

Governor: 1 want to stress straightaway that we've had an extremely constructive meeting. People came to the meeting with different views and of course there was no unanimity. And there was one point about which there's quite a sharp disagreement or a difference in perception. But I think I can honestly say that everybody who made q contribution, was speaking not only with considerable sincerity, not only very constructively but avoiding simple political points, and trying to contribute to the development of policies which will help the workforce in Hong Kong and help to secure our jobs and our prosperity in Hong Kong. So 1 repeat though there were, of course, differences everybody was. I think, contributing in a very constructive and positive way. And I want to thank everybody who spoke, both the panellists and from the floor. There were many points on which there was agreement and many points that we want to develop. A number of arguments about retraining, about job placement, about our existing labour market policies and of course agreement as well on the importance of cracking down hard and more effectively on illegal employment.

f

The main focus of disagreement and it came out in some constructive exchanges is about the relationship, which in the importation of labour and the unemployment situation here in Hong Kong, on which to be fair, employers and employees disagree. Where 1 think we were moving towards agreement was on the importance involving everybody, and the management of whatever importation of labour into Hong Kong exists. We are committed when we next have, and when we've completed our interim review of the importation of labour scheme, to having a further meeting like this, that will be in the early autumn. And we are very open-minded in the administration about an idea which was put forward this afternoon from both sides. They are originally by Mr Henry lang. The idea that we should establish a tripartite committee representing employers and employees to manage and review whatever importation of labour into Hong Kong takes place. But the first thing we have to do is to complete our review, to take an interim view and then to come back and discuss it with the employers' representatives and the employees' representatives who were discussing things with us today.

So while we'll obviously be wanting to spend summer following up a number of the ideas that we would put on the skills gap, on the information gap here in Hong Kong. We'll also be preparing for the next summit meeting like this, by which stage we would have completed the review of labour importation and I hope we'll be able to respond positively on the importance of involving both sides of industry in their managing or taking an overview of any importation of labour that exists in Hong Kong. All right? I am sure you'll want to talk to my colleagues on the platform who were putting different views but putting them in an extremely constructive way. If you want a couple of questions to me. otherwise I suggest to you ...

5

Question: Sir, what measures can you take in the interim before the actual report comes out?

Governor: What we'll be doing in the interim is we've stopped any new quota under the labour importation scheme and we're increasing the measures that we've already put in place to deal with illegal employment. We are stepping up our employee retraining and in particular we are extending our job placement programme to the whole community. We want that to be far more proactive, not waiting for people to come to us, but going out into the community and trying to match those who don't have jobs with the 60,000 or so vacancies which we are told exist.

Question: It has been said that the unemployment problem Hong Kong will have to live with it for 12 to 18 months... Is that something that you have agreed?

Governor: No, I don't necessarily agree with that. I was listening to, that was a view put by one of our distinguished speakers this afternoon, but I was listening to the economist of the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce this morning who was putting rather a different point of view. I think the truth of the matter is we don't know exactly what's going to happen to the figures. We are still confident about our growth targets and predictions in Hong Kong which should mean that there isn't too much slippage in the employment market. But obviously we'll keep the position under very close review. In the longer term, the important thing is for us to have aas competitive economy as possible and that means having as skilled and well-trained a workforce as possible. And those as everybody was agreeing today have got to be our principal medium and long-term objectives.

Question: In concrete terms, what exactly will be done to crackdown on the abuse of...

Governor: Fil let Peter Lai who I think is with us talk to you about that afterwards. But I suggest what you do now is ask some of my colleagues on the platform. The simple first answer is that we're doubling the number of people who are actually dealing with illegal employment.

Question: Governor, a lot of people say that if you don't stop the labour importation scheme immediately, you are just doing some gestures, or doing a show to... the unemployment situation. How do you react to that?

Governor: There are a lot of people upstairs who had the experience of employing large numbers of workers who take exactly the opposite point of view. It is where the argument lies. But I think there are plenty of other issues on which we agree.

6

Question: Mr Governor, just an old point. Actually what is the biggest achievement that the summit has made?

Governor: The biggest achievement is that despite the fact that there are sincerely held disagreements about the causes of unemployment, we had a constructive, positive, civilised, sensible discussion and that I think means that we have a better chance of developing common ground and a consensus for our employment policies here in Hong Kong. Thank you very much.

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

Local workers are given employment priority *****

The acting Chief Secretary, Mr Michael Leung, today (Tuesday) pointed out that both the General Labour Importation Scheme and the Special Scheme for Airport Core Projects are carefully controlled and they are targeted precisely towards the alleviation of shortages in the bottleneck areas.

"There is a proven economic necessity for imported workers. Our responsibility is to make sure that they are still working to their intended purpose," said Mr Leung when addressing the employment summit chaired by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten.

He reassured that government's importation of labour policy was built upon the principle that priority in employment must be given to local workers and that they should not be displaced by imported workers.

He warned that any employer who breached any of the conditions under the schemes would risk having their quotas withdrawn and being barred from future participation in the schemes.

On the immediate concern to assist the displaced workers to rejoin the workforce through job placement assistance and retraining, he invited employers who were looking for staff to provide the Labour Department with information on vacancies.

He also called on those workers who needed employment assistance to register with Labour Department's Pilot Job Matching Programme.

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

7

Government takes tough action against illegal workers

*****

The Secretary for Security, Mr Peter Lai, said today (Tuesday) that the Government was serious about its commitment to take tough enforcement action against visitors, imported workers and foreign domestic helpers who took up illegal work.

Speaking at the summit meeting to discuss employment issues, Mr Lai said illegal workers who were arrested would be prosecuted for breaching their conditions of stay and were punishable by a maximum fine of $5,000 and two years' imprisonment.

"Employers who hire unemployable persons are liable on conviction to a heavier fine of $250,000 and three years' imprisonment," he said.

Mr Lai said the levels of fines were being revised to account for cumulative inflation in past years.

"The new levels are expected to come into effect later this year and will be substantially higher than existing levels," he said.

Last year, the Task Force of the Immigration Department, the Police, the Labour Department and the Urban Services Department mounted more than 1,000 operations at places of employment, and in the past five months alone as many as 624 raids were carried out.

"As a result of these raids, more than 5,000 illegal workers and 1,400 employers were investigated last year, which eventually led to the prosecution of about 3,000 illegal workers and more than 900 employers," he said.

He added that the size of the Immigration Task Force would be doubled later this year and, with the additional manpower, raids of places of illegal employment could be further intensified.

The Secretary urged the public to help the Government tackle the problem by providing information concerning illegal workers and their employers.

On preventive measures, Mr Lai said the Immigration Department maintained a careful record of employers who applied for quota under the labour importation schemes.

8

"Employers with adverse records, such as those who have been convicted of deploying imported workers to do unauthorised work or for hiring illegal workers, can be denied quota," he said.

At present, there are 92 employers with adverse records in the department's data base.

To tackle the problem of visitors taking illegal employment, Mr Lai said Immigration Department officers would screen with extra care at the points of entry those visitors who had a greater propensity to engage in illegal work.

"Those who cannot show proof of sufficient means of support during their visit, or are found to have doubtful intention of visit, can be granted a shorter length of stay than they requested or refused entry," he said.

Mr Lai hoped that with co-operation between the Government and the public the problem of illegal employment would diminish.

End/ Tuesday, June 6, 1995

Hong Kong's first API launched ♦ * * * ♦

Hong Kong's first Air Pollution Index (API) and forecast system was launched by the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) today (Tuesday).

API readings for the territory today range from 36 to 49, meaning that air quality is good.

Forecast of APIs for tomorrow will range from 40 to 55. representing good to moderate air quality.

Speaking at the launching ceremony, the Director of Environmental Protection, Dr Stuart Reed, said the API and the forecast system was meant to provide the community with a worthwhile and reliable guide to the air pollution levels to which they were exposed.

Noting that different air pollutants had different health effects, Dr. Reed said attempting to reduce all these complexities had taken the department some time before it was satisfied that it had a reasonably reliable indicator of the seriousness or otherwise of air pollution in Hong Kong had been achieved.

9

He thanked the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club for funding the entire project.

While it was important that the sort of information provided by the API was made available to the communities concerned, Dr Reed said: "it is equally important to take resolute action to reduce air pollution levels. I believe we in Hong Kong have made good progress in this direction, so far."

Cited as examples were the ban on high sulphur heavy fuel oil in 1990 which brought sulphur dioxide levels down by as much as 80 per cent in some areas, the introduction of lead free petrol, and the more recent control on sulphur content of diesel fuel and vehicle emission standards.

In general, the air quality in Hong Kong is in the range of "good" and "moderate".

For a few days in a year, when the index is between 101 and 200, the air quality is "unhealthy". People suffering from heart or respiratory illnesses are advised to reduce physical exertion and outdoor activities.

In the very unlikely event that the index exceeds 200, the general public are advised to reduce non-essential physical exertion and outdoor activities.

The API will be issued to the media everyday, except Sundays and public holidays. Members of the public can also obtain the API by calling 2827 8541.

Leaflets explaining the API system are now available at district offices and EPD offices.

Also officiating the launching ceremony was steward of RHKJC, Mr Michael Thornhill.

End/Tuesday. June 6, 1995

10

Civil servants offered 9.98 to 10.14 per cent pay rise *****

On the advice of the Governor-in-Council, the Secretary for the Civil Service, Mr Michael Sze, today (Tuesday) made the pay adjustment offer to the staff side of the civil service central consultative councils.

The Administration has offered a 9.98 per cent pay adjustment for the directorate and the upper salary band of the civil service (i.e. monthly salary at $34,691 and above) and 10.14 per cent for the middle and lower bands (i.e. monthly salary at $34,690 and below), with effect from April 1, 1995.

The offers are subject to the approval of funds by the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council.

Mr Sze said the offer for the upper and middle bands was in line with the net pay trend indicators and the offer for the lower band was brought up to the same level as the middle band in line with the established practice.

"In advising on the size of the pay offer, the Govemor-in-Council took into account the findings of the pay trend survey, the staff side's pay claims, the state of the economy, the budgetary position of the Government and the views of the community at large," Mr Sze said.

The proposed pay award, including the provision for subvented organisations, will cost an additional $7.13 billion a year.

The Government will make a final decision on the pay adjustment later this month following consultation with the central staff consultative councils.

End/Tuesday. June 6, 1995

11

Registration of social workers proposed * * ♦ ♦ ♦

The Govemor-in-Council has approved the drafting of a government bill to provide for the registration of social workers and control of their professional conduct in Hong Kong.

The bill will seek to establish a statutory Board with powers to register and discipline ’’registered social workers” and ’’enrolled social workers”, a spokesman for the Health and Welfare Branch said today (Tuesday).

It will also set the qualifications needed for registration and assess those qualifications; issue a Code of Practice or Code of Conduct; and restrict the use of ’’registered social worker” to those qualified for registration, while continue to permit those not formally qualified as social workers to provide social work or social welfare services.

"It is important that those in, for example, religious organisations who make such a valuable contribution to welfare services should be able to continue to do so," the spokesman added.

However, the Administration proposes that ’’enrolled welfare workers”, which is a non-professional grade, be excluded from the registration system.

There are over 20 grades in this category carrying out an extremely wide range of tasks and there is no specific qualification or training required by those who make up these grades.

"We do not believe that there is a clear definable basis on which to control these grades. Indeed, to do so would be an attempt to control the social welfare service as opposed to the social work profession," the spokesman said. "Our preliminary view is that, welfare workers should be supervised and disciplined by their employers rather than through legislation and a statutory body.

"But before reaching a final view, we would wish to consult the profession further,” he added.

The Board will comprise a majority elected by and from the Council made up of registered social workers with the rest appointed by the Governor.

12

The spokesman said the Administration would consult those concerned fully during the drafting of the legislation.

The Private Member's bill prepared by Legislative Council member Mr Hui Yin-fat, "Hong Kong Social Workers and Welfare Workers Council Bill", would be a useful starting point for the Administration in drawing up its detailed proposals.

The Administration aimed to introduce the bill into the Legislative Council in the next session.

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

Further improvements in rehabilitation services endorsed * * * * *

The Governor-in-Council has approved the issue of a White Paper on Rehabilitation entitled "Equal Opportunities and Full Participation: A Better Tomorrow for All".

The White Paper takes into account views expressed on the Green Paper on Rehabilitation published in early 1992 and sets out Government's policy decisions on the further development and improvement of rehabilitation services in Hong Kong over the next decade and beyond.

The Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, will announce details when she tables the White Paper in the Legislative Council tomorrow (Wednesday). The White Paper and its Executive Summary will also be published on the same day.

Attention News Editors:

The Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok. will hold a press conference at the GIS Theatre at 4.30 pm tomorrow (Wednesday). The Director of Social Welfare, Mr Ian Strachan, the Deputy Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mr Bob Wilson, and the Commissioner for Rehabilitation, Mr Allan Chow, will also be present. Your representatives are invited to cover the event.

End/Tucsday. June 6. 1995

13

Trial scheme for cross-harbour taxi stands *****

The Govemor-in-Council today (Tuesday) approved that a trial scheme for cross-harbour taxi stands be introduced.

A Government spokesman said: "Under the scheme, two cross-harbour taxi stands will be set up on each side of the Cross Harbour Tunnel.

"They will be at Harbour Road near China Resources Building and Paterson Street on Hong Kong side, and San Wai Street in To Kwa Wan and Observatory Road near Chatham Road South on Kowloon side. The trial scheme is expected to commence on July 30, 1995 and would last for six months."

The spokesman said designating proper cross-harbour taxi stands at or near the existing unofficial stands would legitimise an established but unregulated practice.

Taxi drivers waiting to return to the other side of the harbour could pick up passengers for the return trip at proper cross-harbour taxi stands. Passengers would benefit by having to pay a single, instead of a double, tunnel toll for a cross-harbour trip departing from the cross-harbour taxi stands.

"The iaw will be amended to permit taxi drivers waiting at cross-harbour taxi stands to refuse hire for non cross-harbour journeys. However, this will be the only exception to the general obligation of taxi drivers to accept hire to any destination in their permitted area of trade.

"Outside the designated taxi stands, refusal to accept hire, whether or not across the harbour, will continue to be an offence, and the Police will step up enforcement during the trial period," he said.

The Transport Department will, in consultation with the Police, the Transport Complaints Unit and the taxi trade, monitor the scheme and assess the utilisation of the stands, traffic implications, public complaints about taxi malpractice at or near the stands, and complaints about refusing hire for cross-harbour trips in general.

A review will be conducted and the District Boards, the Transport Advisory Committee, as well as the Legislative Council Transport Panel will be consulted as necessary.

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

14

Water supply to On Chiu House clean and clear * * ♦ * ♦

The water supplied by Water Supplies Department to On Chiu House at Cheung On Estate, Tsing Yi, is clean and perfectly safe for consumption, a spokesman for the department said after the laboratory test results of water samples taken from the building came out today (Tuesday).

"The test results show that all the water samples are clean and clear, contain no sediment nor insect and are free from bacteria. They all comply bacteriologically and chemically with World Health Organisation Guideline Standards," the spokesman stressed.

The water samples were taken from some of the consumers' taps (including the complainant's tap) and the sump and roof tanks of On Chiu House yesterday (Monday) morning in response to a complaint of insects being found in the tap water at one of the flats in On Chiu House.

He assured the public that "the quality of the water supplied to consumers is closely monitored by regular and frequent testing of water samples taken from all strategic points of the water supply system, including the water treatment works, service reservoirs, distribution mains, consumer premises' sump and roof tanks and consumers' taps and complies fully with the World Health Organisation Guideline Standards for drinking water".

However, he pointed out that "consumers should also take good care of their own piping and storage tank system by carrying out regular maintenance in order to avoid contaminating their water".

End/Tuesday. June 6, 1995

15

Schools administrators urged to be responsive

*****

The Deputy Director of Education, Miss Elaine Chung, today (Tuesday) urged school administrators to avoid defensive euphemisms and to keep the organisation responsive, effective and efficient.

Speaking at the opening of the conference of the Hong Kong Association of Heads of Secondary Schools, Miss Chung said: ”To manage change well, school administrators must accept the inevitability of change in the first place.”

The theme of this year's conference is "The Role of the School Administrator in the Flux of Change".

"School administrators should think positively, anticipate and take charge of change rather than become its conduit or victim," she said.

Miss Chung said school administrators must keep abreast of the latest developments not only in education but also in society around them.

She said school administrators should conscientiously seek feedback from students, parents and teachers and should make them their partners in self-assessment and peer assessment. a

Miss Chung said: "For all intents and purposes, schools arc extraordinarily complex organisations, increasingly more stratified and pressurised.

"The school administrator is expected to be a professional, a charismatic leader, combining discipline with compassion, a visionary who is also pragmatic and realistic," she said.

In the 20th century. Miss Chung said, change was a fact of life for school supervisors, principals, teachers and students alike.

"There are two main types of changes to schools: firstly, changes to its micro environment and secondly, changes to its macro environment.

"Examples of the former would include new regulator}' requirements, parental expectations, curriculum changes, student behavioural problems and new subsidy schemes.

16

"Examples of the latter would include technological changes, the woman's role in society, environmental issues and the change of sovereignty in 1997," Miss Chung said.

She noted that a major macro change was that schools no longer held the monopoly to impart knowledge to students. This role is now shared with the mass media, travels and tools like the Internet.

"The paradox for school administrators is that while the influence of schools on students is probably less than ever before, demands for schools to have more influence on students are stronger than before.

"Schools can no longer be ivory towers. They arc firmly an integral part of society in which they are located and they serve the future generation of that society.

"In short, schools impact on society and society dictates the types of school we have." Miss Chung noted.

End/Tuesday, June 6. 1995

Water storage figure

*****

Storage in Hong Kong's reservoirs at 9 am today (Tuesday) stood at 62.6 per cent of capacity or 367.103 million cubic metres.

This time last year the reservoirs contained 375.501 million cubic metres of water, representing 64.1 per cent of capacity.

End/Tuesday. June 6. 1995

17

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results ♦ * * * *

Tender date 6 Jun 1995 6 Jun 1995

Paper on offer EF bills EF bills

Issue number Q523 H566

Amount applied HK$4,880 MN HK$3,840 MN

Amount allotted HK$ 1,500 MN HKS800 MN

Average yield accepted 5.44 PCT 5.45 PCT

Highest yield accepted 5.46 PCT 5.46 PCT

Pro rata ratio About 48 PCT About 95 PCT

Average tender yield 5.47 PCT 5.49 PCT

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

Tenders to be held in the week beginning 12 Jun, 1995

Tender date 12 Jun 1995 13 Jun 1995 13 Jun 1995

Paper on offer EF notes EF bills EF bills

Issue number 5006 Q524 Y590

Issue date 13 Jun 1995 14 Jun 1995 14 Jun 1995

Maturity date 13 Jun 2000 13 Sept 1995 12 Jun 1996

Tenor 5 Years 91 Days 364 Days

Amount on offer HKS500+100MN HK$l,500+300MN HKS5OO+15OMN

Coupon 6.60 PCT

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

18

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations ♦ * * ♦ ♦

Sjnillkm Time (hours) Cumulative change (Smillkm)

Opening balance in the account 1,913 0930 +593

Closing balance in the account 1,841 1000 . +593

Change attributable to: 1100 +628

Money market activity +630 1200 +630

LAF today -702 1500 +630

1600 +630

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.6 *+0.1 * 6.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.45 2 years 2705 6.40 101.32 5.75

1 month 5.45 3 years 3804 6.90 102.54 6.02

3 months 5.47 5 years 5003 7.75 105.27 6.55

6 months 5.48 5 years M501 7.90 103.41 7.20

12 months 5.51

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $12,228 million

Closed June 6, 1995

End/Tuesday, June 6, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL.: 2842 8777

Wednesday, June 7,1995

Proposal to amend Securities ordinances...................................... 1

HK wants action in APEC declaration this year: D-G of Trade.................. 1

Expert talks on the Court of Final Appeal.................................... 3

Housing tops issues of concern: HAB poll..................................... 4

Scholarships for agriculture and fisheries studies........................... 5

Fanling lot to let........................................................... 6

Flushing water cut in Sha Tin................................................ 6

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations......................... 7

1

Proposal to amend Securities ordinances ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

• H-

The Government has proposed to amend the Securities (Clearing Houses) Ordinance and the Securities Ordinance with a view to strengthening further Hong Kong's risk management systems.

The Securities (Clearing Houses) Ordinance was enacted in July 1992. Its main purpose was Ip disapply certain aspects of insolvency/bankruptcy laws in respect of securities transactions conducted at the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Ltd in order to lessen the potential for a chain reaction of financial market defaults.

The Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, said today (Wednesday): "The legislative amendments being proposed seek to extend the Ordinance to cover futures transactions conducted at the Hong Kong Futures Exchange Ltd.”

The Securities (Amendment) Bill 1995 seeks to empower the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) to make rules to facilitate tracking of speculative short selling of securities and to deter market manipulation.

"It also seeks to enable the SFC to prescribe, by rules, position limits and other conditions in relation to trading of stock options," Mr Cartland said.

The Bills will be published in the Gazette on Friday and introduced into the Legislative Council on June 21.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

HK wants action in APEC declaration this year: D-G of Trade ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Director-General of Trade, Mr Tony Miller, said today (Wednesday) Hong Kong would want to see, above all else, "substance” in the forthcoming declaration by the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation’s (APEC) Economic Leaders at their November meeting in Osaka, Japan.

"We need action, and we need to demonstrate to both our own businessmen and non-APEC governments that APEC means business," he said.

-i 2

"We need to demonstrate that we have pulled together an action agenda which, once adopted by APEC Economic Leaders and faithfully pursued, will enable APEC economies to reach the goal set at Bogor."

. . J : „ •>. .)>. $•. ;

Mr Miller, who is Hong Kong's appointed Senior Official to APEC, gave a talk entitled "Charting A Course for APEC - From Bogor to Osaka and Beyond" at a luncheon meeting of the New Zealand-Hong Kong Business Association.

He said the second Economic Leaders meeting at Bogor, Indonesia, last year set an unqualified goal of free trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region by the years 2010 and 2020, for industrialised and developing economies respectively.

"It was a decision to ignore the theological questions, to set the goal clearly and leave Senior Officials and Ministers to work out how to get there later," he said.

"In effect, the Senior Officials of APEC have been charged with the task of drawing an action agenda which will lead to full liberalisation by the appointed dates."

To this end, Mr Miller said the Osaka Declaration would need to meet three simple criteria - it must have a convincing and comprehensive timetable for the liberalisation of trade and investment, must bring specific trade facilitation benefits for businessmen, and must demonstrate to the wider world APEC members' determination to lead by example.

"To be convincing the timetable set at Osaka must be clearly spelled out. We would like agreement on member economies submitting their individual action plans next year, for review and adoption by leaders at their Manila meeting in November 1996, with implementation beginning on January 1, 1997," he said.

"We would like agreement on subsequent phases commencing in 2000, 2005 and so on," he added.

Mr Miller said to be convincing the action agenda must also be comprehensive.

"Hong Kong's view of free trade is a simple one: no tariffs, no restrictions, no exceptions. So in our view nothing should be excluded from the start," he said.

•/ . . ?*? H ....

"While work may proceed at a different pace on different issues, both the collective and the individual elements of the Osaka package must embrace all aspects of liberalisation, facilitation and co-operation."

3

Mr Miller said while trade and investment liberation would bring some benefits for businessmen, it must be matched by collective action to cut through the red tape and bureaucratic hassle which wastes the time, money and energy of businessmen throughout the region.

He emphasised that trade facilitation must be tackled in the same convincing and comprehensive way as liberalisation and to an agreed timetable.

"Customs procedures must be simplified, standards harmonised, rules made transparent, and common principles agreed for investment, procurement, the defence of consumer and much more besides," he added.

Mr Miller described as "justified in Hong Kong's view" the mood of impatience among APEC members with the slowness of the multilateral process but pointed out that it must be channelled to constructive purpose.

"APEC does not need to reinvent the World Trade Organisation (WTO). It should complement the WTO's work, not duplicate it," he said.

"It should reaffirm and reinforce belief in the efficacy of its founding principles: non-discrimination, national treatment and transparency," he added.

"I think all this is achievable, and I have been impressed by the thoroughness and determination of the Japanese Chair this year in carrying forward the torch from Bogor."

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Expert talks on the Court of Final Appeal

*****

The eighth round of talks between experts of the British and Chinese sides of • the Joint Liaison Group on matters relating to the Court of Final Appeal will be held in Hong Kong on June 7 and 8.

The British team will be led by British Representative Mr Alan Paul. The Chinese team will be led by Chinese Representative Mr Chen Zuo'er. They will be assisted by experts from the two sides.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

4

Housing tops issues of concern: HAB poll * ♦ * * *

Housing-related problems continued to remain in the minds of local residents, according to the latest public opinion poll conducted by the Home Affairs Branch.

Releasing the findings of a bi-monthly survey carried out between May 8 to 12, a spokesman for the Branch said the housing issue topped the list of problems most mentioned by the respondents. The percentage, which stood at 37 per cent, was the same as that recorded in the last survey.

Among them, 39 per cent worried about the high cost of private flats while the corresponding figure in March was 47 per cent.

Meanwhile, 72 per cent felt that the Government had made efforts to solve the housing problem and 12 per cent thought the issue had been well-handled.

Of the other most-mentioned issues facing the territory, "labour-related problems" came second with 34 per cent, of which 55 per cent mentioned the labour importation scheme, about the same as the previous findings (53 per cent).

This was followed by "Hong Kong Future" which stood at 26 per cent, up slightly from 24 per cent in the March poll.

The survey was the 58th in the series to gauge the trend of public opinion on perceived problems in Hong Kong and the community's views of the general situation.

A total of 1.501 persons were successfully interviewed using a random sample of residential telephone numbers.

Within the household of a selected telephone number, a respondent aged between 15 and 64 was randomly chosen for interview.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

5

Scholarships for agriculture and fisheries studies *****

Eligible students are invited to apply for financial assistance under the Agricultural Products Scholarship Fund and the Marine Fish Scholarship Fund from tomorrow (Thursday).

The assistance can be in the form of scholarship, grants and interest-free loans from the two funds which are administered by the Agriculture and Fisheries Department (AFD).

Announcing this today (Wednesday), a spokesman for the Agricultural Product and Marine Fish Scholarship Funds Advisory Committee said application forms would be available tomorrow from the AFD Headquarters on the 12th floor of Canton Road Government Offices. 393 Canton Road, and from various District Agricultural and Fisheries Liaison Offices.

Applications for tertiary education subsidies in the new academic year will close on July 18 while those for secondary school students will close on August 16.

The spokesman said the funds were set up in 1978 to help people wishing to serve the local agriculture and fisheries industries or related trades on completion of their studies, and also those employed in the industries wishing to pursue further training.

"Another aim of the funds is to provide financial assistance to children or dependants of farming and fishing families to complete their tertiary and secondary schooling," he said.

"Applicants in tertiary education should be Hong Kong residents under 30 years of age while secondary school applicants should be students in Secondary four or seven.

"The awards will be tenable at any university in Hong Kong, any acceptable overseas institution and any secondary school in the territory."

Approved courses for tertiary education include those on agriculture, veterinary science, marine science and biology or any applied science directly relevant to the local agriculture or fisheries and related trades.

Enquiries about the funds and application procedures can be made on tel 2733 2244 during office hours.

End/Wcdnesday. June 7. 1995

6

Fanling lot to let

* * ♦ * *

The Lands Department is inviting tenders for the short- term tenancy of a piece of government land in the New Territories.

Located in Area 21, Luen Wo Hui, Fanling, the lot has an area of 2,500 square metres for use as a fee-paying public car park.

The tenancy is for two years, renewable quarterly.

Closing date for submission of tender is at noon on June 23.

Tender form, tender notice and conditions may be obtained from the District Lands Office, North, the District Lands Offices, Kowloon. 10th floor, Yau Ma Tei Car Park Building, 250 Shanghai Street, Kowloon, and the Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road.

Tender Plan can also be inspected at these offices.

End/Wcdncsday. June 7. 1995

Flushing water cut in Sha Tin

*****

Flushing water supply to some premises in Sha Tin will be suspended from 8 am to 8 pm on Friday (June 9) to facilitate checking of the supply system.

The affected areas include Jat Min Chuen. Sha Kok Estate, Pok Hong Estate, Yue Shing Court. Yi Shing Square. Kong Pui Street. Yuen Chau Kok Road, and Regal Riverside Hotel.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

7

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

*****

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change (Smillion)

Opening balance in the account 1.841 0930 +686

Closing balance in the account 2.243 1000 +686

Change attributable to : 1100 +651

Money market activity +622 1200 +650

LAF today -220 1500 +625

1600 +622

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 *-0.1* 7.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.49 2 years 2705 6.40 101.17 5.83

1 month 5.50 3 years 3804 6.90 102.35 6.09

3 months 5.51 5 years 5003 7.75 104.90 6.64

6 months 5.52 5 years M501 7.90 103.07 7.28

12 months 5.58

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $13,869 million

Closed June 7, 1995

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

SUPPLEMENT

Wednesday, June 7,1995

Contents Page No,

Legislative Council meeting: Unemployment problem.................................................. 1

AG supports improvements to Prosecutions Division.................... 8

Review of the Prosecutions Division................................ 14

White Paper on rehabilitation....................................... 24

Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995: second reading................. 27

Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995: committee stage................ 29

Electoral Provisions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 1995 ......... 30

Medical Registration (Amendment) Bill 1995 ........................ 32

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Bill............................................ 34

Magistrates Ordinance.............................................. 36

Hong Kong Association of Banks (Amendment) Bill 1995 .............. 37

Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance....................... 38

/Smoking among.....

Contents

Page No,

Smoking among young people a serious problem............................ 39

No rules for police in handling autistic persons........................ 41

Voter registration in the new functional constituencies................. 42

Public access channel................................................... 44

Quality of water supplied to Hong Kong from China....................... 45

Statutory registration system for social workers........................ 47

Locations of bus stop cause obstruction................................. 48

Proposed bypass and Eastern Corridor Link............................... 49

Illegal sale of marked oil.......................................... 51

Medical, welfare and education services for Island District............. 52

Petitions received by Government House.................................. 54

Measures to keep inflation rate within Government estimate.............. 55

Vacant public rental flats.............................................. 57

Average length of stay in public hospitals.............................. 59

Privately-run residents' coach service.................................. 61

Surveys on benzene content of unleaded petrol........................... 63

Health education for students........................................... 65

Hepatitis cases among prisoners......................................... 69

Compassionate rehousing scheme for divorced tenants..................... 70

Demand and supply of special school places.............................. 72

Unemployment problem

*****

Following is a speech by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the motion debate on unemployment problem in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

ft.

Mr President,

Yesterday, the Governor convened a summit meeting to discuss employment issues. The meeting is not a political show as implied by Mr Fred Li. It was a genuine desire to bring together representatives of employers and employees and Legislative Council Members who all share a common concern. It is that common concern that has prompted today's motion debate on unemployment. a

The Unemployment Situation - -

For many years, Hong Kong has been blessed with virtually full employment. However, in recent months, we have seen a rise in the number of people unemployed. Our latest unemployment rate of 3%, whilst low and enviable by international standards, is the highest in the past 9 years. It is natural and understandable that we, as a community should be worried about this phenomenon. However, we should not let ourselves be panicked into taking "emergency" quick fixed measures no matter how well-intended the motivations may be. To do so could be counter productive and could trigger off further retrenchment and push more industries to relocate. •

' ' ■■ .. •< 1.: Y.'J,

* -uit-’i n

The issu.es are complicated. We need to find out the underlying.causes for the increase in the number of people in the labour market looking for jobs. We also need to find out why the vacancies in the job market are not snapped up by the people looking for jobs.

2

The increase in unemployment in recent months is largely due to the cyclical moderation in some service sectors, which has given rise to a reduced uptake of workers displaced from the manufacturing sector. The period of unemployment for most of those who are unemployed has not been prolonged. The labour utilisation rate also remains high, as indicated by the consistently low underemployment rate of around 1.5%. In addition, labour force growth in 1994 was an annual average of 3.5%, the highest in many years. It will probably take a bit of time for this additional labour supply to be absorbed. We know that there are about 80,000 persons looking for jobs and 60,000 vacancies waiting to be filled by suitable persons. All these indicate that the recent increase in the unemployment rate is not reflective of any particular fundamental weakness of our economy which needs to be tackled with 'emergency' measures. This is rather a problem of'mismatch' in our labour market which has been made more acute in the recent months as a result of a cyclical downturn in the growth of some service sectors - the major absorbers of displaced workers. What we need is a thoughtful and prudent approach to resolve this problem. We also need to work together and not let our concerns polarise the community and drive a wedge between employers and employees and detract us from finding a solution.

Short-term measures

We have already a lot of common ground which can be pursued despite differences in opinions. In the short-term, our immediate task must be to help our displaced workers, who have been most hard-hit by the recent easing of our employment market, to re-enter the workforce. We will therefore step up our efforts on retraining and job placement assistance.

• ' ■ ' i V. r

Retraining

The Employees Retraining Scheme, which was established in 1992, has so far successfully provided retraining for over 60,000 persons. The Employees Retraining Board (ERB) will set up new Retraining Resource Centres to provide career counselling services and intensive pre-employment training to retrainees. It will provide an Outplacement Service to retrenched workers. It will also strengthen the links with employers and trade unions. With these new initiatives, the ERB will make the Scheme more placement-focused and expects to be able to place not less than 10,000 retrainees in jobs in the next 12 months.

3

Jr..,. ,i»..

Job Placement

. J • I . . ... -• ! it;. . . .

As regards job placement assistance, the Local Employment Service (LES) of the Labour Department is meeting the challenge posed by the recent rise in the number of job seekers through the Pilot Job Matching Programme launched in April this year. This programme was designed specifically to assist displaced workers over 30 years of age to re-enter the work force. This Programme is fully integrated with the Employees Retraining Scheme. Already, it has successfully matched 167 displaced workers out of a total of 612 registrants with the relevant job vacancies in the first two months of its operation. Additional resources will be provided to Labour Department to extend the Programme from 5 LES offices to all the 9 LES offices this autumn. Our aim is to triple both the number of registrants and placements by the end of the year. On top of these efforts, the Labour Department will provide prompt on-site employment assistance service for workers who are about to be retrenched, to help them secure alternative employment in good time.

Household survey

Our experience indicate that retraining and job placement are the two most effective means in facilitating displaced workers to rejoin the work force. The challenge before us is to ensure that they are targeted exactly at those most in need of such assistance. To ensure the effectiveness of these job placement and retraining measures, we will double the sample size of 13,050 households per quarter of General Household Survey to obtain more detailed information in respect of the profile of both the unemployed and job vacancies. We will also include more items in our survey of vacancies. The enhanced General Household Survey will start in October. With such information, we should be able to devise better ways and means to 'match' the unemployed with the vacancies.

Enforcement Actions

* * • I

We are firmly committed to taking tough enforcement actions to clamp down on abuses of our labour importation schemes and illegal employment. We will not tolerate those who abuse the labour importation schemes. Imported workers are not cheap labour to be exploited. The Labour Department will conduct more vigorous inspections at the places of employment and accommodation of imported workers to guard against abuses involving breaches of conditions of the Standard Employment Contract such as underpayment of wages and unpaid overtime work.

4

In 1994, we set up a Special Immigration Task Force to strengthen enforcement measures against illegal workers. As a result, we have been able to organise more operations and take prosecution actions against a larger number of illegal workers and their employers. The number of illegal workers and employers investigated increased by 2,500 and 900 respectively in 1994 over 1993, which is more than double the 1993 number. More than 1,000 operations were carried out amounting to an average of almost three operations per day. We will double the size of the Task Force from the exisiting size of 46 to 92 to further enhance these efforts this year. This increase is a significant increase in manpower and we can expect a commensurate increase in the number of cases to be investigated. We should also bear in mind that the practice of stringent entry clearance procedures at entry control points also serves the purpose of reducing illegal workers. The Police's combat against illegal immigrants is also very relevant to the work in this respect. But our enforcement actions will need the help of the public. The Immigration Department operates a 24-hour hotline for he public to report cases of illegal employment. We will add a fax-line for the same purpose inthe near future.

Honourable members have called for heavier penalties against those who employ illegal workers. Let me assure members that we appreciate the need for these penalties to carry the desired deterrent effect. At present, employers are liable to 3 years' imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on conviction of hiring all catagory of all persons not lawfully employable not only illegal immigrants. On conviction of failure to inspect identity documents, employers are liable to 1 year's imprisonment and a fine of $ 50,000. The penalty for aiding and abetting are the same as the principle offence. The fines for hiring illegal workers and for legally unemployable persons to undertake work in Hong Kong are now being reviewed in the context of an overall review on the levels of fines on a number of offences. We hope to propose new levels to this Council soon. The heavier fines to be proposed should boost their deterrent effects. For the period of imprisonment, we believe that the current penalty level has sufficient deterrent effect and is commensurate with the offence for both employers and illegal workers themselves. We will, of course, keep the level of penalties under regular review, but there is no strong evidence to suggest that, other than the rates of fines which will, as I mentioned, be updated, there should be an urgent need to revamp the other element of the penalty.

To take preventive measures, we have maintained a careful record of employers who apply for quota under labour importation schemes. Employers with adverse records, such as having been convicted for deploying imported workers to do unauthorised work or for hiring illegal workers, can be denied quota.

5

To tackle the problem posed by visitors as I mention earlier, we screen those who have a greater propensity to engage in illegal work with extra care at their entry point. Those who cannot show proof of sufficient means of support during their visit, or are found to have doubtful intention of visit, are often granted a shorter stay than they requested or can even be refused entry.

Review of the General Labour Importation Scheme

As members are aware, we have started our comprehensive review of the General Labour Importation Scheme and will complete it by October. In the meantime, no new quota will be allocated. We will take full account of the latest employment conditions in our labour market to see whether any changes should be made to both the number and types of workers permitted under the Scheme. This review will cover all the operational aspects of the Scheme, including the quota ceiling, the quota allocation formula as well as the vetting and monitoring procedures. We need to ensure that the Scheme will continue to meet the needs of the market and at the same time not erode the job opportunities of local workers. We will consider the proposal from yesterday's summit for a tripartite committee on importation of labour comprising government, employers and employees. We will also consult the Panel on Manpower of this Council and the Labour Advisory Board on the results of the review before implementation.

Medium 1'crm

In the medium term, we need to monitor closely the economic restructuring process and its effects on our labour force, in particular, the changes in the distribution of jobs between different sectors of industry. We also need to identify the characteristics of the core group of displaced workers with low employability.. We also need to study whether discriminating practices might be contributing to the difficulties which displaced workers faced.

. I Long-Term measures

In the long-term, we are committed to improving both the productivity and efficiency of our manpower resources through education and training. This is in line with our employment policy to provide a well-trained workforce to meet the demands of our dynamic economy. We already have in place a well-established system of tertiary and continuing education provided by our tertiary institutions, as well as technical and vocational training through the Vocational Training Council and other training bodies. We will be reviewing our long-term manpower planning strategies regularly so that this system is geared towards the needs of the labour market.

6

To terminate the importation of labour policy.

Impassionate pleas have been made by some members for the immediate scrapping of the importation of labour schemes. The Administration has already indicated at an earlier motion debate in this Council last month, that we do not support this proposal. There is no obvious and direct causal link between our importation of labour policy and the recent increase in unemployment rate. The number of workers remaining in Hong Kong has actually been declining during the last few months when the unemployment rate went up. Our importation of labour schemes are carefully controlled and targeted solely towards relieving specific areas of shortage. Safeguards are in place to ensure that local workers are given priority in employment and that they should not be displaced by imported workers. Our imported workers have been playing a vital role in supporting the continued operation and development of many business companies which may otherwise have to shut down their production lines and retrench local workers. There is a proven economic need for imported workers in a considerable number of sectors of industry as well as airport core programme. We should not pre-empt the result of the review and put an end to the schemes prematurely.

Legislation to control the labour importation schemes

Some Members had called for control over imporation of labours to be enthrined by legislation. We have yet to be convinced that legislative controls are necessary and in the best interests of our community. A Private Member’s Bill and a motion advocating a similar proposal were debated recently. Neither were supported by this Council.

Legislation to give priority in employment to local workers

As regards legislation to give priority in employment to local workers, let me reiterate the Government’s position : we do not see any need to legislate for this. There are, as 1 said earlier, administrative safeguards under our importation of labour schemes to ensure that local workers will be given priority in employment. We will examine how to further strengthen the effectiveness of such measures in the context of our review on the General Scheme. Moreover, even if legislation were to be enacted, it will be extremely difficult if not impossible to enforce effectively, without at the same time causing serious disruption to the free market operation of our economy, damaging our harmonious labour relations, and unnecessarily restricting the freedom of choice for both employers and employees in the labour market, which will benefit nobody at the end of the day.

7

To solve the livelihood problems of workers during periods of unemployment

We understand the anxieties of those who are unemployed and unable to find alternative jobs. Those in genuine financial need would be taken care of by the existing Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) Scheme which provides a safety net for individuals or families suffering from financial hardship for all kinds of reasons. This safety net covers a comprehensive range of social services including cash assistance, free medical care, compassionate rehousing and other free programmes organised by the Government and non-governmental organisations.

Publicity on CSSA has been enhanced to ensure that those in financial need know how and where to get assistance. A handbook on CSSA was published in June 1994 and copies of the handbook were widely distributed. Pamphlets on CSSA are made available for distribution to members of the public at social security field units, family services centres and district offices of the Social Welfare Department (SWD) as well as the public enquiry counters of the District Offices. Audio and video tapes on CSSA are played at social security field units to publicise the assistance available. Since April 1995, taped messages on the eligibility criteria and application procedures for CSSA are also available on the departmental hotline of SWD.

We are undertaking a comprehensive review of social security arrangements. It will cover, inter alia, various aspects of the administration of the CSSA Scheme with a view to improving services to clients. It is expected that proposals would start to emerge from the review by the end of this year.

For those unemployed persons who are not eligible for CSSA but who may have genuine and urgent financial needs, emergency relief can be provided through grants made from the trust funds administered by SWD. A range of welfare services are also available to those individuals and families who need assistance to deal with their problems, such as counselling services, child care services, waiving of medical charges, home help services and family aide services.

Conclusion

I have just in conclusion outlined a series of measures - short, medium and long-term - to tackle the problem of the mismatch and abuse in our labour market. They are meant to help those who have difficulties in finding employment or are facing the possible threat of retrenchment. These measures are positive, practical and prudent. We are not in a state of emergency requiring emergency measures to be adopted. Therefore, the Administration opposes the motion and Mr Tam Yiu-chung's amendment to it. We support Mr Henry Tang's amendment and would urge members to do likewise.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

8

AG supports improvements to Prosecutions Division *****

The Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, has spoken in support of a Legislative Council motion by the Hon Elsie Tu, for the Director of Public Prosecutions to carry out a review of the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division of the Legal Department to ensure that proper checks and balances are in place. The review will be carried out with the assistance of independent experts.

Mr Mathews also supported two amendments to the motion proposed by the Hon Emily Lau. In response to her suggestions, Mr Mathews said the department would look further at its accounting system to see if it could be refined to provide better information as to costs. It would also consider appointing a senior professional administrator, taking into account various factors, such as the experience of the Judiciary in having an administrator, and management improvements initiated by the department.

In his speech to the Council on the motion and amendments, Mr Mathews noted that there were internal as well as external safe-guards and checks and balances at present.

He described the internal processes by which prosecution decisions were made, and pointed out that generally speaking, the Prosecutions Division was not involved in the investigation of crimes.

"This is quite deliberate. This separation of function ensures that decisions to prosecute are made by those who, because they have not been involved in the investigation process, can view the evidence dispassionately and objectively," he said.

Once received the investigation file is assigned to one of the specialist units within the Prosecutions Division for evaluation.

"Each unit is headed by an experienced Counsel at the Directorate level, whose responsibilities include the supervision of counsel within that unit. All advice given is checked and counter-signed by the directorate officer.

"Where a case may fall within the jurisdiction of the High Court - for example, a possible prosecution for murder, the approval of a Directorate officer to prosecute will be sought. Similarly, prosecutions of major cases in the District Court will need the approval of a Directorate officer.

9

”In cases of particular weight, say, a major commercial crime, or cases which may involve a wider public interest, the papers will be passed to a Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions and then to the Director personally. The Director will, whenever he considers it appropriate, refer such decisions to me, either to endorse the decision or, in some instances, for me to decide,” Mr Mathews said.

On the external safe-guards and checks and balances, Mr Mathews pointed out that first of all, there was the Legislative Council.

’’The ability of this Council to question an Attorney General about prosecutorial decisions is a valuable and significant safe-guard.

"Of course, I can understand the frustrations of members when I decline to go into the reasons for a particular decision. Let me say this, I, too, have experienced frustration in not being able to answer publicly the barrage of criticism, to which I and my Department have been subjected over decisions taken in certain cases. However, there are sound reasons of public policy why an Attorney General cannot discuss his decision to prosecute, or not to prosecute, a particular case," he said.

He emphasised that the only forum in which a person’s guilt or innocence should be assessed was in a court of law, where that person had all the safeguards provided by the criminal law to ensure that he or she had a fair trial.

"Any discussion of the correctness of a decision to prosecute, or not to prosecute, a particular person is likely to raise the question of whether there was sufficient evidence to prosecute, which is just a step away from the question whether he or she was guilty," he said.

He explained that where a decision had been taken not to prosecute a particular case, there were other reasons why an attorney general should not discuss the basis of that decision.

"To make public the grounds on which the evidence was judged to be insufficient to secure the likelihood of a conviction would, in the first place, breach the confidentiality of police reports and statements taken by the police from potential witnesses. Disclosure of the reasons for not believing prospective witnesses might require revealing the criminal record of those witnesses.

"The same reasons would apply to making public details about the defendant with the result that there would be a public "trial" of the potential defendant without his or her having all the safeguards that are an integral part of a criminal trial in open court," he said.

10

He repeated the three reasons he gave earlier to the Council in explaining why decisions to prosecute or not to prosecute should not be discussed:

* If the defendant has been prosecuted but acquitted, it cannot be in the interests of justice and fairness for that acquittal or its reasons to be debated in public.

* If the defendant has been prosecuted and convicted, it would hardly be proper to discuss whether the conviction was correct or not. If the defendant felt he should not be convicted, he would appeal.

* If criminal proceedings were not taken it would not be fair or just to discuss why the accused were suspected and the reasons for not prosecuting. To embark on such a course would be tantamount to a trial but it would not be in accordance with court procedures and it would not be confined to evidence admissible in court.

Nevertheless, he also repeated that the stand he took did not render him unaccountable to the Council.

’’Further safe-guards and checks arise through the detailed work of the Legislative Council Panel on the Administration of Justice and Legal Services, before whom I and the Director frequently appear. The media, too. have a part to play in raising public concerns over particular decisions," he said.

"Then there are the courts. A decision to prosecute will frequently result in a trial, where the case against the defendant is tested by the defendant’s lawyers, by the judge and, in the High Court, by the jury.

"But an acquittal does not mean that the original decision to prosecute was wrong, for the decision to prosecute is based on a reasonable prospect of securing a conviction, while a conviction requires proof beyond reasonable doubt.

"There are many and varying reasons why a defendant may be acquitted: witnesses may die or change their stories, or simply not be believed. New evidence may come to light," he said.

Mr Mathews reminded the Council that the proper role of prosecuting counsel was not to secure a conviction at any cost, but to lay out the evidence fairly and impartially for the court, or the jury, to decide guilt or innocence.

11

’’With that caution, I would note that the Division had the following conviction rates in the past year: 76 per cent in the High Court, 67 per cent in the District Court and 63 per cent in the Magistrates’ Court. By way of contrast the Crown Prosecution Service in England had a conviction rate in 1993-94 of about 57 per cent," he said.

He added that at present, the Prosecutions Division had 99 Crown Counsel, 95 lay court prosecutors and 153 support staff. In 1994, they handled 2,416 appeal cases, 654 cases in the High Court, 683 cases in the District Court and 5,775 cases in the Magistrate's Courts.

"This is an increase of some 38 per cent over the number of cases handled in 1993. Apart from the day to day advisory duties, counsel in the Division also provided 5,236 specialist pieces of advice to various law enforcement agencies in the financial year 1994-95 - an increase of 16 per cent over the previous year," he said.

Mr Mathews also set out some of the improvements made to the Prosecutions Division over the recent years:

* The Division is now sub-divided into 15 units each with its own specialist function and each headed by a Directorate officer, with increased level of professional expertise necessary to handle the complex nature of much of crihiinal work;

* The Director of Public Prosecutions has recently put in place a research and general advice unit, whose duties include reviewing and recommending changes in criminal law and procedure; and assisting in the giving of drafting instructions and commenting on criminal legislation;

* A booklet on Prosecution Policy was published in 1993 to further public understanding of the principles that are applied when a decision to prosecute is to be made;

* With regard to the system of briefing-out cases, several important measures have been taken recently - in particular, the capping of fees in non-standard cases and the establishment of a Working Party to review the briefing out system.

12

For the future:

* A fully integrated information technology system, now being installed, will greatly enhance the ability to capture information to aid in the operation of the Prosecutions Division.

* The significant increase in the strength of the Division - long over-due -will enable the Director to beef-up various units within the Division. This will help to improve the service provided to law enforcement agencies and other government departments in terms of the quality of advice given.

* Greater use of Chinese in courts will be facilitated by assisting in the production of bilingual indictments and charge sheets, and by improving the ability of prosecutors to conduct cases in Cantonese.

* Specialist training will be provided to Crown Counsel dealing with vulnerable witnesses so as to facilitate the implementation of the proposal to allow videotaping of evidence in such cases and for the better handling of trials involving vulnerable witnesses.

"It is against this background of steady improvements that I welcome the review proposed in the Honourable Mrs Elsie Tu’s motion." Mr Mathews said.

" I say this for a number of reasons. Firstly such a review would tie-in with the process of improvements already started by the Director of Public Prosecutions.

"Secondly, the Prosecutions Division had grown in size over the years and will expand further. At the same time, the criminal law and procedures have grown in terms of specialisation and complexity. Both factors suggest that there is a need to review the way in which decisions are made.

"Thirdly, it is vital that the decision-making process should be one which commands public respect and confidence, for the prosecution process is of such vital importance to the maintenance of the rule of law in Hong Kong. We must ensure that the proper checks and balances are in place," he said.

"The Director is anxious to press ahead with the review, with a view to producing to this Council a public report before the end of the year." he added.

Turning to the first amendment to the motion proposed by the Hon Emily Lau, Mr Mathews noted that at present, the spending of the Legal department was grouped under five programme areas. Under each programme area, a breakdown was kept for costs incurred for each category of activity.

13

“For example, in the Prosecutions Division, we can identify the costs incurred for trial preparation, asset recovery, extradition, advisory work and prosecutions, and so on. Similarly, in the Civil Division, we can identify the costs incurred for civil litigation, mutual legal assistance, construction contracts, advisory work and so on. The costs cover staff costs, other operating costs such as office equipment, as well as costs for briefing out work to outside lawyers. These costs are incurred largely as a result of providing legal services to other Government departments and law enforcement agencies.

"This system allows us to have a more focused view on the cost of the services we provide. It also provides a basis for identifying savings and possible redeployment of resources.

"So we already have a system of accounting which can identify cost. But I have no difficulty with the suggestion that we should look further at that system to see if it can be refined to provide better information as to costs," Mr Mathews said.

On the second amendment proposed by the Hon Emily Lau, Mr Mathews noted that over the past few years, the Department’s administration had been strengthened very considerably, starting with the creation in 1989 of the post of Chambers Manager with the specific objective of having a senior professional administrator to manage the Department.

Nevertheless, Mr Mathews said, the suggestion to appoint a senior professional administrator within the Legal Department will be seriously considered having regard to various factors.

He noted that the working party set up to review the briefing out system would report to him by the end of this year. At the same time, the Information Systems Strategy Plan was expected to bring significant improvements to the management of the Department.

"These two major activities represent a considerable part of the work of the Administration Division of the Legal Department. I would like to take these two initiatives into account when considering the possibility of appointing a more senior administrator," he said.

In his speech to the Council today, Mr Mathews also set out the constitutional position concerning prosecutions in Hong Kong.

14

Decisions to prosecute are, under Hong Kong's constitution, the sole responsibility of the Attorney General. This constitutional doctrine was recognised in a statement released in February 1963 at the direction of the then Governor.

"When the Attorney General of the day makes a decision to prosecute or not to prosecute he does so independently of the Government. He acts in a semi-judicial way, free from orders or pressure from the Government or any other quarter. So the responsibility is his, and his alone."

"That constitutional independence, jealously preserved and guarded, is, I believe, a bulwark for the rule of law in Hong Kong, and so it is reassuring to note that the Basic Law provides for the continuation of the principle, by stating that the Department of Justice shall control criminal prosecutions 'free from any interference'", he said.

In winding up his speech, Mr Mathews said the Legal Department was a vital component in the structure of the Government. It bears a heavy responsibility, he said, one which it discharges with great skill and professionalism.

"But like all institutions, it is capable of improvement. I and my ex officio colleagues will vote in support of the original motion and the amendments," he said.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Review of the Prosecutions Division

*****

Following is the speech by the Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, in the motion debate on review of the prosecutions division of the Legal Department in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I am grateful that this debate is taken place. I am grateful that we have an opportunity to discuss serious issue affecting, not only the public confidence in me, my department, but also in the rule of law. I think it's a timely debate I'm grade we have it. It gives me an opportunity to address concerns about the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division, to explain some of the major improvements that have been made to the running of the Division, and to set out some of our plans for further improvements. And I hope as 1 go along I'll persuade Members that these are not the products of crisis management or a quick fix.

I I

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Constitutional position

Mr President, let me start in the sense which Mr Martin Lee left off and that is by setting up the constitutional position concerning prosecutions in Hong Kong. Decisions to prosecute are, under our constitution, the sole responsibility of the Attorney General. This constitutional doctrine was recognised in a statement released in February 1963 at the direction of the then Governor which said this:

"It is the Attorney General who is responsible for all prosecutions in Hong Kong. It is for the Attorney General alone to decide whether or not prosecutions shall be instituted in any particular case or class of case, and his responsibility to control and conduct them."

That remains the position to-day. The important point to note is that when the Attorney General of the day makes a decision to prosecute or not to prosecute he does so independently of the Government. He acts in a semi-judicial way, free from orders or pressure from the Government or from any other quarter. And at this point I would say, Mr President, that I am in full agreement with the sentence just expressed by Mr Martin Lee on this very important aspect. So the responsibility is his, and his alone. That constitutional independence, jealously preserved and guarded, is, I believe, a bulwark for the rule of law in Hong Kong, and I think it is reassuring to note, as Mr James To pointed out, that the Basic Law provides for the continuation of the principle, by stating that the Department of Justice shall control criminal prosecutions "free from any interference".

But how, in practice, does the prosecution process work? And what are the present safe-guards, the checks and balances, to ensure that this awesome power, for such it is, is properly used, and that the public can have confidence in this vital aspect of the rule of law and administration of criminal justice?

In most instances, as one might expect, the power to make decisions in relation to prosecutions has been delegated to the Director of Public Prosecutions and his officers. But not all powers have been delegated: some remain personal to the Attorney General, for example, decisions under the Complex Commercial Crimes Ordinance and under section 5 of the Organized and Serious Crimes Ordinance. • Similarly, the power to enter a nolle prosequi - that is to discontinue a prosecution -and to seek a review of sentence, have not been delegated. That powers I exercise personally. Some offences cannot be prosecuted without my personal consent, for example, prosecutions under section 10 of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance.

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However, in reaching decisions in these cases where I have not delegated my powers, I have the benefit of advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions and his senior colleagues.

The prosecution process

Mr President, the decision-making process begins when the Prosecutions Division receives an investigation file from a law enforcement agency, in most cases either the Police or the IC AC. It is important to note that generally speaking, the Prosecutions Division are not involved in the investigation of crimes. And that is quite deliberate. This separation of function ensures that decisions to prosecute are made by those who, because they have not been involved in the investigation, can view the evidence dispassionately and objectively. In some major and protracted cases, the advice of Prosecutions Division may be sought during the course of investigation over the strength of evidence and its possible admissibility, but even then the separation of function is strictly adhered to.

Once received the investigation file is assigned to one of the specialist units within the Prosecutions Division for evaluation. Each unit is headed by an experienced Counsel at the Directorate level, whose responsibilities include the supervision of counsel within that unit. All advice given is checked and countersigned by the Directorate Officer. Where a case may fall within the jurisdiction of the High Court - for example, a possible prosecution for murder, the approval of a Directorate officer to prosecute will be sought. Similarly, prosecutions of major cases in the District Court will need the approval of a Directorate officer. In cases of particular weight, say. a major commercial crime, or cases which may involve a wider public interest, the papers will be passed to a Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions and then to the Director personally. The Director will, whenever he considers it appropriate, refer such decisions to me, either to endorse the decision or, in some instances, for me to decide.

Current safe-guards and checks and balances

Mr President, I now turn to the important question of safeguards and checks • and balances, and the allied issues of transparency and accountability.

I have described the internal processes by which prosecution decisions are arrived at, showing that all major decisions are reached only after careful consideration at various levels within the Prosecutions Division. This process aims at minimising errors, and ensuring consistency of advice and policy, for it is important that decisions are made fairly and consistently.

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There are a number of external safe-guards and checks and balances. First of all, there is this Council. The ability of this Council to question an Attorney General about prosecutorial decisions is a valuable and significant safeguard. Of course, I can understand the frustrations of members when I decline to go into the reasons for a particular decision. Let me say this, I, too, have experienced frustration in not being able to answer publicly the barrage of criticism, to which I and my Department have been subjected over decisions taken in certain cases. However, there are sound reasons of public policy why an Attorney General cannot discuss his decision to prosecute, or not to prosecute, a particular case.

Mr President, the only forum, I repeat, the only forum, in which a person's guilt or innocence should be assessed is in a court of law, where that person has all the safeguards provided by the criminal law to ensure that he or she has a fair trial. Any discussion of the correctness of a decision to prosecute, or not to prosecute, a particular person is likely to raise the question of whether there was sufficient evidence to prosecute, which is just a step away from the question whether he or she was guilty. But, as I have said, that question is one exclusively for our courts.

Where a decision has been taken not to prosecute a particular case, there are other reasons why an Attorney General should not discuss the basis of that decision. To make public the grounds on which the evidence was judged to be insufficient to secure the likelihood of a conviction would, in the first place, breach the confidentiality of police reports and statements taken by the police from potential witnesses. Disclosure of the reasons for not believing prospective witnesses might require revealing the criminal record of those witnesses. The same reasons would apply to making public details about the defendant with the result that there would be a public "trial" of the potential defendant without his or her having all the safeguards that are an integral part of a criminal trial in open court.

Mr President. I make no apology for repeating the explanation that I gave in a letter to the Chairman of the House Committee in May 1993, and which I gave to members of this Council in answer to a question put to me in April of last year. In explaining why decisions to prosecute or not to prosecute should not be discussed I gave the following three reasons.

(a) If the defendant has been prosecuted but acquitted, it cannot be in the interests of justice and fairness for that acquittal or its reasons to be debated in public.

(b) If the defendant has been prosecuted and convicted, it would hardly be proper to discuss whether the conviction was correct or not. If the defendant felt he should not be convicted, he would appeal.

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(c) If criminal proceedings were not taken it would not be fair or just to discuss why the accused was suspected and the reasons for not prosecuting. To embark on such a course would, as I just explained, be tantamount to a trial but it would not be in accordance with court procedures and it would not be confined to evidence admissible in court.

I hope that members would understand why I, and my predecessors, have taken the stand that I have referred to. 1 hope that members will, on reflection agree with me to some of that principle. But I also repeat, the stand, the principle that I adopt does not render me unaccountable to this Council. I would wager that I'm probably the Attorney General who has been question more frequently and appeared more often before this Council Panels than any of my distinguished predecessors.

Further safe-guards and checks arise through the detailed work of the Legislative Council Panel on the Administration of Justice and Legal Services, before whom I and the Director frequently appear. The media, too, have a part to play in raising public concerns over particular decisions.

Then. Mr President, there are the courts. A decision to prosecute will frequently result in a trial, where the case against the defendant is tested by the defendant's lawyers, by the judge and, in the High Court, by the jury. But an acquittal does not mean that the original decision to prosecute was wrong, for the decision to prosecute is based on a reasonable prospect of securing a conviction, while a conviction requires proof beyond reasonable doubt. There are many and varying reasons why a defendant may be acquitted: witnesses may die or change their stories, or simply not be believed. New evidence may come to light.

At this point, I would remind members that the proper role of prosecuting counsel is not to secure a conviction at any cost, but to lay out the evidence fairly and impartially for the court, or the jury, to decide guilt or innocence. With that caution, I would note that the Division, the Prosecution Division, had the following conviction rates in the past year: 76% in the High Court, 67% in the District Court and 63% in the Magistrates' Court. By way of contrast the Crown Prosecution Service in England had a conviction rate in 1993/94 of about 57%.

Let me say a word about how the Division had staffed and what it does because I think it's important, Mr President, that in this important debate with the emphasis being laid on particular cases in the past we should not lost sight, as I'm sure Members won't, of the broader picture.

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At present, the Division has 99 Crown Counsel, 95 lay court prosecutors and 153 support staff. In 1994, they handled 2,416 appeal cases, 654 cases in the High Court, 683 cases in the District Court and 5,775 cases in the Magistrate's Courts. This represent an increase of some 38% over the number of cases handled in 1993, without a matching increase in staff I should add. Apart from the day to day advisory duties, counsel in the Division also provided 5,236 pieces of specialist advice to various law enforcement agencies in the financial year 1994/95 - an increase of 16% over the previous year. I would like to pay tribute to the officers in the Prosecutions Division -the Crown Counsel. Court Prosecutors and their hardworking support staff whose dedicated work does not always get the recognition it deserves. 1 wish to place on record my tribute to their skills, their experience, their versatility and sheer hard work. Hong Kong is indebted to them.

Improvements

This evening's debate reference had been made to certain specific cases, these cases all had been subject of detailed discussion in the past and I've answered questions in this Council in respect of many of them, in some cases, at considerable length. Members will forgive me if I do not repeat what I have said previously about those cases will understand for the reasons I have just given why I do not intend to add what I've already said on previous occasions.

Mr President. I now like to set out some of the improvements made to the Prosecutions Division over the recent years. Not as a result of a knee jerk reaction to crisis, not as a reaction to quick fix solutions, not as some sort of delay reaction but as a steady process of improvement managed in a careful and measured way.

* First, the Division is now sub-divided into some 15 units each with its own specialist function and each headed by a Directorate officer. These units include a Court Advocates Unit which deals with nearly all High Court trials. Trial Preparation Units for High Court and District Court, an Appeals Unit, an Extradition Unit, a Drugs Asset Recovery Unit and a Bill of Rights Unit - to name just a few. Each unit is composed of specialists in those areas, increasing the level of professional expertise necessary to handle the complex nature of much of today's criminal work;

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* Secondly the Director of Public Prosecutions has recently put in place a research and general advice unit, whose duties include reviewing and recommending changes in criminal law and procedure, and Members would have seen some of the products of that in the form of bills that have come before them recently; assisting in the giving of drafting instructions and commenting on criminal legislation; giving criminal advice to all government branches and departments which are not covered by other sections in the Prosecutions Division; and advising the Commissioner of Police in Magistrate's Courts cases.

* Thirdly, in 1993, we published a booklet on Prosecution Policy, that was done with a view to furthering public understanding of the principles that are applied when a decision to prosecute is to be made. This explains, for example, the tests to be applied in deciding whether there is sufficient evidence to prosecute, and the public interest considerations that may properly lead to a decision not to prosecute;

* Fourthly, with regard to our system of briefing-out cases on which some Members have spoken this evening, Members will be aware of several important measures recently taken, in particular, the capping of fees in non-standard cases and the establishment of a Working Party to review the briefing out system, to be chaired by the Director of Public Prosecutions and including representatives of the Bar Association and the Law Society. The Director and I intend that be a thorough going review because we arc determined that the briefing out system will be such as to stand up to critical public examination in this Council and elsewhere.

So Mr President, we have a Prosecutions Division, that is hard-working and highly professional, in a process of steady improvement. What of the future?

* First, the introduction of a fully integrated information technology system, now being installed, will greatly enhance our ability to capture information in the aid of the operation and management to the Division and I've taken a careful look of the useful suggestions that had been made by some Members this evening about that and I’ve gratefully acknowledged the assistance given by Members outside the debate this evening freely giving out their time and their advise and I would like to say how grateful I am to them. In this connection, we shall be making a progress report to the Panel on Administration of Justice and Legal Services early next month.

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* Secondly, we look to a significant increase in the strength of the Division - long over-due in my opinion - this will enable the Director to beef-up various units within his Division. This will help to improve the service provided to law enforcement agencies and other government departments in the terms of the quality of advice we give.

Thirdly, we shall facilitate the greater use of Chinese in the courts by assisting in the production of bilingual indictments and charge sheets, and by improving the ability of prosecutors to conduct cases in Cantonese.

* Fourthly, we will provide specialist training to Crown Counsel dealing with vulnerable witnesses so as to facilitate the implementation of the proposal to allow videotaping of evidence in such cases and for the better handling of trials involving vulnerable witnesses.

Mr President. 1 have set out at some length the improvement already made what we have in the pipeline to demonstrate that these are not products of crisis management and not evidence of resistance to change to ostrich-like attitudes as we have been accused by some this evening.

It is against this background of steady improvements that I welcome the review proposed by the Honourable Mrs Elsie Tu's motion. I say this for a number of reasons. Firstly such a review would tie-in with the process of improvements already-started by the Director of Public Prosecutions. Secondly, the Prosecutions Division had grown in size over the years and will expand further. At the same time, the criminal law and procedures have grown in terms of specialisation and complexity . Both factors suggest that there is a need to review the way in which decisions are made. Thirdly, it is vital that the decision-making process should be one which commands public respect and confidence, for the prosecution process is of such vital importance to the maintenance of the rule of law in Hong Kong. We must ensure that the proper checks and balances arc in place.

For these reasons. I fully support the motion calling for the Director of Public Prosecutions, with the assistance of independent experts, to carry out a review of the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division and I have taken a careful note of the suggestions made by the Hon Mrs Elsie Tu as to its composition. The Director I know is anxious to press ahead with the review, with a view to producing to this Council a public report before the end of the year.

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A clear accounting system

I turn now, Mr President, to the amendments proposed by the Honourable Emily Lau. The first of these calls upon the Administration to institute an accounting system clearly identifying costs incurred by the Department including those incurred in advising, acting on behalf of, or representing Government departments, thereby injecting greater transparency and accountability to the Department's operations.

Before responding to that amendment, I would like to describe briefly the Department's current accounting system and how we identify the cost of the services we provide. At present, the spending of my department is grouped under 5 programme areas. Under each programme area, a breakdown is kept for costs incurred for each category of activity. For example, in the Prosecutions Division, we can identify the costs incurred for trial preparation, asset recovery, extradition, advisory work and prosecutions, and so on. Similarly, in the Civil Division, we can identify the costs incurred, for example, for civil litigation, for mutual legal assistance, for the drafting the preparation of construction contracts, and for advisory work. The costs cover staff costs, other operating costs such as office equipment, as well as costs for briefing out work to outside lawyers. These costs are incurred largely as a result of providing legal services to other Government departments and law enforcement agencies. This system allows us to have a more focused view on the cost of the services we provide. It also provides a basis for identifying savings and possible redeployment of resources.

So we already have a system of accounting which can identify cost. But. Mr President. 1 have no difficulty at all with the suggestion that we should look further at that system to see if it can be refined to provide better information as to costs and I taken on board the faults Miss Lau over inter-departmental charging, something that I think she’s worrying in the past and also the question of over time recording and performance indicators.

If I just say a brief words about inter-departmental charging. My initial reaction to that is while there may be attraction in this, we must be careful that it will not bring in its wake unnecessary bureaucracy and since it ... wide implications I should have to explore the idea further with my senior colleagues including the Financial Secretary and the Secretary of the Treasury but I've taken the point.

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Appointment of a senior professional administrator

The Honourable Emily Lau's second amendment urges the Administration to consider the appointment within the Department of a senior professional administrator in order to support the Department with a higher level of administrative expertise, similar to that supplied to the Judiciary by the Judiciary Administrator.

We have, over the past few years strengthened very considerably the Department's administration, starting with the creation in 1989 of the post of Chambers Manager with the specific objective of having a senior professional administrator to manage the Department. That innovation has been very successful. The Department has. in its Administration Division headed by the Chambers Manager, a body of skilled administrators and managers. The Departmental Secretary post has been recently upgraded to the Directorate level (DI) in order to strengthen the administration support in formulating and implementing major administrative issues such as localisation and manpower planning of the department, improving staff management and relations, deployment of resources, financial control and office automation. Each of the major divisions now has its own Divisional Executive Officer to assist in management and administration, thus freeing the Law Officers to concentrate on their major responsibilities as Heads of Department. These changes have provided the Department with efficient and effective management. I would like in this point to refute in strong terms the suggestion that the department is in a shambolic state. Those believe that are welcome to come and visit us when we can find time in our busy schedule to fit you in.

Nevertheless, the suggestion to appoint a senior professional administrator within the Legal Department will be seriously considered having regard to the following factors -

(a) the need for the creation of such a post;

(b) it's level;

(c) the way it would fit in the overall senior management of the Legal Department;

(d) the quality and experience required of the incumbent tilling the post;

(e) the improvements to be expected as a result of the creation of the post; and

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(f) the experience of the Judiciary and its relevance to the Legal Department.

In this connection, Members will be aware that the working party set up to review the briefing out system will report to me by the end of the year. At the same time, the Information Systems Strategy Plan is expected to bring significant improvements to the management of the Department. These two major activities represent a considerable part of the work of the Administration Division. I would like to take these two initiatives into account when considering the possibility of appointing a more senior administrator.

Mr President, the Legal Department is a vital component in the structure of the Government. It bears a heavy responsibility, one which I believe it discharges with great skill and professionalism. But like all institutions, it is capable of improvement. I and my ex officio colleagues will vote in support of the original motion and the amendments.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

White Paper on rehabilitation *****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in presenting the White Paper on Rehabilitation "Equal Opportunities and Full Participation: A Better Tomorrow for All" in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President.

Tabled today is the White Paper on Rehabilitation entitled "Equal Opportunities and Full Participation: A Better Tomorrow for All". The White Paper is a comprehensive document which sets out our policy directions for the future development of rehabilitation services over the next decade and beyond. To make the White Paper more accessible to a wider audience, we are also publishing separately an Executive Summary.

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Since the publication of the Green paper on Rehabilitation in 1992, we have made significant progress in implementing its key recommendations. We are working hard to achieve in full the targets of providing over 7,000 day and residential places for people with a disability by 1997. We are improving the accessibility of our public transport system. We are enhancing job opportunities for people with a disability. We are strengthening public education on integration. We have also reviewed the Mental Health Ordinance and have drawn up a package of proposed improvements to it and, last month, we also introduced the Disability Discrimination Bill into the Legislative Council. All these measures will help us to achieve our policy objectives of full participation and equal opportunities for people with a disability.

We aim to provide a full range of services for people with a disability of all ages -

(a) We have stepped up prevention, identification and assessment of disabilities so as to prevent impairments or td ensure that impairments do not degenerate into more limiting disabilities. For example, preventive measures have been put in place during pregnancy, infancy and childhood. Disabilities in children and adults are identified through various means including the Comprehensive Observation Scheme for all children from birth to the age of five and contacts with out-patients and emergency units of hospitals.

(b) After an abnormality is detected in a child, he or she is given a comprehensive assessment so that appropriate treatment can be given or referral for placement can be made. Adolescents and adults suffering from acquired disabilities through, for example, diseases, are treated and initially assessed in clinics and hospitals. Further assessment and rehabilitation services are provided to them after the acute phase of their illness or injury is over.

(c) We provide a comprehensive range of rehabilitation services to people with a disability in order to maximise their physical, mental and social capabilities to the fullest extent possible. These services include early education and training; education; medical rehabilitation; employment and vocational rehabilitation; and access and transport.

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We are spending $7.4 billion in 1995/96 on rehabilitation services, representing an increase of 18% over last year. We have further secured $596 million to improve rehabilitation services between 1995 and 1998 in line with the provisions of the White Paper. The services involved cover social, vocational, and medical rehabilitation, special education, transport and public education. Certain policy decisions in this White Paper can be implemented through better co-ordination among service providers or by re-targeting existing resources, without incurring additional expenditure. As regards those improvement measures where funds have not yet been secured, for example, the projected requirements for social rehabilitation services arising from the adoption of a new demand formula, we will bid for the necessary funds in the annual Resource Allocation Exercise and implement them as resources permit.

The significant progress which has been made since the publication of the Green Paper and the successful completion of the White Paper are due largely to the tireless efforts of a wide range of people dedicated to the goal of integrating people with a disability into our community. I would like to take this opportunity to record today my sincere gratitude to the Working Party on Rehabilitation Policies and Services and its three sub-committees for their hard work, the Rehabilitation Development Co-ordinating Committee for its invaluable guidance and the Governor for his personal support for rehabilitation services.

We have set out clearly our way forward in the White Paper for the future development of rehabilitation services. I am confident that with the support of the community at large and the firm partnership between the non-governmental sector and the Government, we will achieve the goals of full participation and equal opportunities. We shall work together with people with a disability to build a better tomorrow for all.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

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Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995: second reading *****

. . if

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in the resumption of the second reading of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

May I begin by expressing the Administration's gratitude to the Hon Zachary ......

Wong Wai-yin and all other Hon Members who served on the Bills Committee, for their thorough and painstaking study of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995. |(i

There is now clear evidence based on autopsy reports conducted on drivers killed in traffic accidents, that drunken driving is a real problem in Hong Kong. -Indeed, drunken driving is already an offence under the Road Traffic Ordinance but enforcement and prosecution have proven to be very difficult because the present legislation does not specify a blood alcohol limit, nor are suspected offenders required by law to provide samples of their breath, blood or urine. Drink driving results in traffic accidents causing death and injuries, often to innocent third parties, and Hong Kong is one of the few places that does not have effective legislation to tackle the problem. Action is needed.

The main purpose of the legislation now before Hon Members is to provide the necessary legislative teeth by stipulating a prescribed limit for the permitted alcohol concentration in a driver's blood, urine and breath, and to imposing a legal obligation on drivers to provide samples of blood, urine or breath for testing in certain specified circumstances. We are not introducing random breath testing, but drivers may be required to take a breath test if they are involved in traffic accidents, commit a moving traffic offence or if the Police have reasonable grounds to suspect that they have been drinking. As the Hon Zachary Wong has said members of the Bills Committee have been briefed on internal guidelines for applying these procedures.

We propose setting the prescribed alcohol limit at 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood because we believe it provides a reasonable starting point in Hong Kong, since, as I have explained, our present legislation contains no blood/alcohol limit whatsoever. Indeed, this follows the standard adopted in most European Union countries and is also the practice in many states in the US and elsewhere.

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Dr the Hon Leong Che-hung has given notice that he intends to propose a Committee Stage Amendment to reduce this limit to 50 milligrams. The Administration’s view is that this more stringent standard, which would equate to about two or three drinks for most people, is difficult to justify at present. The ex officio members will therefore vote against this proposed amendment.

But we certainly appreciate the intent behind the proposed amendment and the Administration undertakes to gather information based on the results of tests on drivers conducted in the first 12 months after the legislation takes effect. We will then review this information and consult the LegCo Transport Panel before deciding whether or not the blood/alcohol limit needs to be adjusted. Let me point out that the Bill has been drafted in such a way that the Secretary for Transport can vary the prescribed limit quite easily by means of a Gazette notice, which would then be subject to vetting by Members of this Council in the normal way. We will also review the adequacy of penalties and the equipment available to the Police. Dr Leong's criticism that the Administration is only prepared to test the waters and not seek perfection is with respect unfounded. His proposal was discussed in depth by the Bills Committee but rejected. I thank the Hon Lee Wing-tat for so eloquently presenting some of the counter arguments. And as I’ve said what is important; Mr President, is that the Administration undertakes to review this within a year.

Mr President, the opportunity has also been taken in this Bill to make a number of minor amendments to the Road Traffic Ordinance relating to vehicle registration marks, the powers of traffic wardens, and the authority to vary the fees charged at vehicle testing centres and vehicle emission testing centres. These amendments have, likewise, been fully supported by the Bills Committee.

I shall be proposing a number of amendments to the Bill at the Committee Stage which seek to improve the working of the proposed legislation.

Mr President, as Dr Leong has said the simple but essential message that the Administration is seeking to put across is that drink and drive do not mix. We will launch a publicity campaign but we need legislation to facilitate enforcement. With these remarks I commend the Bill to Honourable Members.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

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Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995: committee stage

*****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, at the committee stage of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr Chairman,

I move the amendments set out under my name in the paper circulated to Members.

The amendment to the new section 39B(2) seeks to standardise the wording used, so that "reasonable cause to suspect" will be a pre-condition in all cases before a police officer may require a person to provide a specimen of breath for a screening breath test.

• 4 x 4 4 *• * . > •

The amendments to the new sections 39C, 39D and 39E are minor textual refinements.

The amendment to the new section 39E(3) requires a medical practitioner to state in writing his diagnosis justifying any objection he may have to his patient providing a specimen of breath, blood or urine for testing.

All these amendments have been discussed and agreed by the Bills Committee.

Mr Chairman, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

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Electoral Provisions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 1995

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Nicholas Ng, in moving the second reading of the Electoral Provisions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday): . • » •

• ’■* -• - 77 • •'/’ > •

Mr President,

I move that the Electoral Provisions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill be read7 the second time.

< -U.l -it/Ji

The current Bill comprises two sets of amendments. The first set proposes to transfer a number of statutory powers and functions vested in the Governor in his former capacity as the Legislative Council President to other authorities. The second set of amendments proposes to reduce the residential qualifying period for candidature.

Let me start with the first set of proposals. Following the Governor's stepping down from this Council's Presidency in February 1993, some statutory powers and functions vested in the Governor in his former capacity as the President will need to be transferred to other authorities. I shall briefly explain these powers and functions, and the respective amendments in the Bill.

First, at present, a Member elected to this Council Shall be treated as having accepted office unless he gives notice in writing to the Governor of his non-acceptance within 7 days after the election result is published in the Gazette. Clauses 2 and 10 of the Bill provide that the requisite notice should henceforth be given to the Clerk to this Council.

Secondly, an elected Member of this Council may now resign by giving notice in writing to the Governor. Clauses 3 and 11 provide that in future such notices should' be given to either the Legislative Council President or the Clerk to the Legislative Council. The Clerk is included as one of the "authorised recipients" to cater for situations where it is the President who resigns, or when the President is not available.

Thirdly, existing electoral legislation provides that an elected Member of this Council who has failed for three consecutive months in the same Legislative Council session to attend any sitting of the Council will be disqualified, unless the absence is excused by the Governor. Clauses 4 and 12 provide that in future the President of this Council shall have the power to excuse non-attendance.

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The Bill also provides that if it is the President who is absent for three consecutive months, this Council shall have the power to excuse his non-attendance.

Fourthly, under current legislation, the Governor shall declare, by notice published in the Gazette, that a vacancy exists in this Council within 21 days after the vacancy has come to his knowledge. Clauses 5, 6, 13 and 14 provide that when a casual vacancy arises in future, the declaration is to be made by either the President or the Clerk to this Council.

Lastly, under the Oaths and Declarations Ordinance, a Member of this Council is required to take the appropriate oath before the President or any other Member presiding as soon as he is appointed or elected. With the Governor stepping down from the Presidency, the question will arise as to who should administer oaths to Members at the first sitting in October 1995 before the election of the President. Clause 18 provides that oaths taken by the Members of this Council at the first sitting and before the election of the Legislative Council President shall be tendered by the Clerk to the Council, while oaths taken at any other sitting shall be tendered by the President or the Member acting in his place.

I now turn to the other set of proposals in the Bill. Under our electoral laws, a candidate, regardless of whether or not he is a permanent resident, must have ordinarily resided in Hong Kong for the ten years immediately preceding his nomination. In addition, he must be a registered elector. The rationale for having some form of residential requirement is to ensure that candidates have sufficient local knowledge so that, if elected, they can effectively represent their constituents.

We have reviewed the residential qualifying period in the light of a recent Court case and public comments. Clauses 8 and 16 now propose to relax the requirement from ten-year immediately preceding the date of nomination to three-year immediately preceding the date of nomination. We believe that this new qualifying period is sufficiently short to meet the Bill of Rights requirement, but sufficiently long to ensure that candidates have adequate first-hand and up-to-date knowledge of local conditions.

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Mr President, I should like to say a few words on timing. Nominations for the Legislative Council elections will start on 1 August. Amendments to the residential qualifying period for candidature should be enacted well before then so that aspiring candidates can have a clear idea of where they stand. In addition, the various amendments arising from the Governor stepping down from the Presidency of this Council should also be in place before the end of the current Legislative Council session. 1 would therefore urge this Council to give early and favourable consideration to this Bill, which has indeed been discussed with Members, especially with Members of the Sub-committee on Procedural Matters and the Constitutional Affairs Panel.

Thank you, Mr President.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Medical Registration (Amendment) Bill 1995 * ♦ * * *

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in moving the second reading of the Medical Registration (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move that the Medical Registration (Amendment) Bill 1995 be read the second time.

Certain legislative provisions for the administration of the medical profession are outdated as a result of changes in circumstances over time. This Bill proposes six major areas of change.

The first proposed change concerns the composition of the Medical Council, which at present comprises 14 members appointed by the Governor. Since 1978 the number of registered medical practitioners has grown from 3,029 to 7,779, the number of complaints has increased from 27 to 170 and the number of formal disciplinary hearings has increased from 4 to 29. The Council needs to be expanded to broaden its representation and to meet this increasing workload. The Bill proposes a new Council of 24 members, with expanded representation from, inter alia, the University of Hong Kong. Chinese University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong Medical Association and the lay sectors. These 24 members shall include 12 elected members - six to be elected from all registered medical practitioners on the General Register and the rest to be elected by the council members of the Hong Kong Medical Association. The introduction of elected members in the Medical Council is in line with Government's policy of encouraging greater involvement of the profession in its own affairs.

33

Under the existing Medical Registration Ordinance, holders of UK. Irish and certain Commonwealth diplomas are automatically entitled to register as medical practitioners in Hong Kong. This is discriminatory and would appear to contravene the provisions of the General Agreement on Trade in Sendees. Our second proposal is to introduce a universal licensing examination which practitioners seeking registration in Hong Kong will have to pass, no matter where they received their training. This will provide a fair and reasonable system to those seeking to enter the profession in Hong Kong. I hope that, within this much fairer structure which we are proposing, the enlarged Medical Council will consider entry to the profession by foreign-trained medical practitioners in as liberal a spirit as possible without compromising patients' safety or standards of medical care.

The third proposed change is the introduction of a Specialist Register. We have at present a register of medical practitioners. However, the community has no means of knowing which of those practitioners may be qualified to practise in a certain medical specialty. A Specialist Register is proposed to be established to allow for the formal registration and control of medical specialists. A General Register will take the place of the existing register.

Our fourth proposal paves the way for medical practitioners-in-charge of exempted clinics to apply for limited registration. These practitioners have, over many years, provided a useful service to the community, especially to those who arc less well off. They should be allowed, without comprising patients' safety and standards of professional care, to practise under the provisions of limited registration.

The existing Ordinance provides for the establishment of a Licentiate Committee and a Preliminary Investigation Committee. Wc propose to enshrine in law various other important aspects of the Council's work through the establishment of three other statutory committees. They arc the Health Committee, the Education Committee and the Ethics Committee.

Our last proposed change concerns disciplinary proceedings. We propose that the Medical Council and its Health Committee should be empowered to prohibit the disclosure of information relating to an inquiry by the Council or a hearing by the Health Committee, if it is in the interests of the complainant, defendant or witness.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

34

Wong Wai Tsak Tong Bill *****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in moving the second reading of the Wong Wai Tsak Tong (Renewal and Extension of Sub-leases) Bill in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President.

I move the second reading of the Wong Wai Tsak Tong (Renewal and Extension of Sub-leases) Bill.

The Wong Wai Tsak Tong is the registered owner of about 90% of the private land on Cheung Chau. The Tong holds the land under the Block Crown Lease dated 18 March 1905 and under several new grants made after that date, with the leases and grants expiring on 27 June 1997. Most of the land owned by the l ong has been subleased on renewable five year terms.

The New Territories Leases (Extension) Ordinance extended the term of most New Territories leases, including that of the Tong, to 30 June 2047.

During the late 1980s. disputes began to arise between the long and the sublessees. The main areas of concern were related to the renewal of sub-leases, payment of Government rent and redevelopment of the sub-leased land. Attempts to resolve the disputes in the courts failed. In November 1994. most of the sub-leases expired. However, owing to the disputes between the two parties, we understand that a majority of the sub-leases have not been renewed.

These arc prima facie private disputes between the Tong and its sub-lessees and should be resolved between the two parties. However, the disputes have over the years built up to the extent that they arc undermining Government’s proper land administration on Cheung Chau and causing social unrest in the community. Property transactions on Cheung Chau arc currently effectively frozen as a result of the dispute, which has led to many sub-leases not being renewed creating uncertainty to title. These are public issues which Government must address.

The purpose of the Wong Wai Tsak Tong (Renewal and Extension of Subleases) Bill is to introduce an objective, practical and fair solution to address the points of dispute between the Tong and the sub-lessees.

35

First, the Bill provides for the automatic renewal and extension of sub-leases. All sub-leases which expire before the commencement of the legislation, provided that they have at some time in the past been registered in the Land Registry, will be deemed to have been renewed from a date of expiry to the day immediately before the commencement of the legislation. New sub-leases will be deemed to be granted from a date of commencement of the legislation. These new sub-leases will expire on 27 June 2047.

When sub-leases registered in the Land Registry expire after the commencement of the legislation but before 1 July 1997, they will be deemed to be granted upon their expiry as sub-leases which will end on 27 June 2047.

Second, the Bill proposes that Government rent will be payable directly to Government by the sub-lessees whose sub-leases are renewed under clauses 4 and 5 of the Bill. From 1 July 1997, Government rent will be set at 3% of the rateable value of the property as provided in Annex III to the Sino-British Joint Declaration. These amounts will be payable by the sub-lessees direct to Government from 1 July 1997.

There is one exception to the renewal and payment of Government rent provisions. These are sub-leases which have been granted or renewed for terms extending beyond 9 November 1994 and under which the Tong and the sub-lessee have agreed on the amount of rent payable to the Tong after 30 June 1997. These subleases are excluded because they result from agreements freely entered into and it is Government's intention to keep its interference with private contracts to the minimum.

The Bill also proposes that unless the Tong satisfies the Director of Lands that it has reasonable grounds for objecting to a modification or exchange, or the Director of Lands considers that the application should be refused for other reasons, the Director may approve the modification or exchange applied for. Upon such approval and tendering of the specified amount to the Tong, the Tong will be deemed to have agreed to the modification or exchange and will be obliged to execute the necessary documentation for the modification or exchange.

The Tong will be entitled to charge sub-lessees an amount equal to 10 per cent of the premium payable to Government in respect of the modifications and exchanges. This is to recognise the Tong's status as the lessee under the Block Crown Lease and the fact that, but for the legislation, the Tong would not have been obliged to agree to enter into any modifications and exchanges of land sub-leased.

If the Bill is enacted, sub-lessees will have certainty as to their sub-leases through to 27 June 2047. They will pay Government rent direct to Government. The Tong will not be able to delay redevelopment proposals requiring modifications and exchanges. As a result, the sources of much of the friction between the sub-lessees and the Tong should be removed.

36

Under the Bill, the Tong’s legal position will be maintained in the sense that the rights and liabilities of the Tong and a sub-lessee under the sub-leases extended and renewed by the Bill will not be affected by the Bill, except as specifically provided for under the Bill.

While we were formulating this Bill, there were calls for the status of the Tong as the Crown Lessee to be abolished and the sub-leased land be granted to the sublessees.

Mr President, I would like to emphasise that one of the most important foundations for Hong Kong's society and its success over the years has been the Government's long-standing policy of respecting and protecting private property rights. Although legislation to remove the Tong's interest in the sub-leased land would be in the interest of the sub-lessees, it obviously deviates from this policy and might be seen as setting an undesirable precedent for Government to use legislation to abolish private property rights. We therefore do not propose such a course of action.

The proposed Bill will achieve a fair, objective and practical solution to the dispute between the two parties and recognises as far as possible the legitimate interests of both parties, without taking away any property rights. I commend it to Members for favourable consideration.

Thank you. Mr President.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Magistrates Ordinance *****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in moving the motion of the resolution under Section 18(E) of the Magistrates Ordinance, Cap 227 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the Motion standing in my name on the Order Paper. This motion seeks to incorporate two smoking offences under the Smoking (Public Health) Ordinance (Cap 371) into the Third Schedule of the Magistrates Ordinance. Details of the two smoking offences are set out in the motion.

37

The Third Schedule of the Magistrates Ordinance provides defendants with an opportunity to plead guilty by letter without attending court to answer summonses if they decide not to dispute their liability for any of these offences.

Incorporating the two offences into the Third Schedule will have three benefits: first, each defendant need not spend time in court attendance; second, the time of prosecuting officers in the relevant departments will be saved; and third, the workload of the court will be reduced in terms of staff and time.

Mr President, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Hong Kong Association of Banks (Amendment) Bill 1995 *****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, in moving the second reading of the Hong Kong Association of Banks (Amendment) Bill 1995:

Mr President.

I move that the second reading of the Hong Kong Association of Banks (Amendment) Bill 1995.

The principal purpose of the Bill is to enable the Bank of China to rotate as Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Committee of the Hong Kong Association of Banks, along with the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited and Standard Chartered Bank. We agree with the Committee of the Hong Kong Association of Banks, which has initiated the proposal, that this is a logical step forward in recognition of the increasingly important role played by the Bank of China in the local banking system. Members are aware that the Bank is one of the continuing members of the Committee of the Hong Kong Association of Banks and that it became the third note-issuing bank in 1993.

At present, there are no explicit criteria on eligibility as a continuing member. We have taken the opportunity to define continuing members by reference to their status as note-issuing banks, which is now their main distinguishing characteristic.

38

The present two-year term of the chairmanship of the Committee will be shortened to one year. We agree with the Hong Kong Association of Banks that a two-year term is probably too long given the increasing demands placed on the chairman bank. Furthermore, a shorter tenure would mean that a continuing member would only have to wait for two years before serving as the Chairman, instead of the present four years.

As regards the rotation sequence of the chairman banks, the Bill enables the incumbent bank, the Standard Chartered Bank, which has an original term ending in 1996, to serve a one-year term until the end of 1995, to be followed by the Bank of China in 1996 and the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation in the following year. The three banks will normally rotate in that sequence thereafter.

Besides provisions on chairmanship, the Bill also seeks to introduce a number of other amendments to the Ordinance, including provisions to cater for the introduction of a new inter-bank payment system and changes to the authority for some of the powers exercisable by the Governor in Council with a view to ensuring consistency with amendments already proposed to the Banking Ordinance recently, and to relieve the burden on the Governor in Council of considering matters which do not involve major policy issues.

Mr President, the Bill contains a number of useful amendments necessary to enhance further the stature of the banking system in Hong Kong and to cater for developments in the banking sector.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance ♦ * * * ♦

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Planning. Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in moving the motion of the Interpretation and General Clauses. Ordinance in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President.

I move the motion standing in my name in the Order Paper.

39

At present, the 'Director of Buildings' serves as an ex-officio member of the Board of Management of the Chinese Permanent Cemeteries having inherited that function from the former Director of Buildings and Lands when the Buildings and Lands Department was split. Experience indicates that the issues involved are more on the 'land' side than on the 'building' side, and it is more appropriate for the Director of Lands rather than the Director of Buildings to serve as an ex-officio member of the Board.

This resolution provides for the transfer of statutory functions under section 3(2)(a)(ii) of the Chinese Permanent Cemeteries Ordinance from the Director of Buildings to the Director of Lands and replaces the reference to the Director of Buildings in that Ordinance, with a reference to the Director of Lands.

Mr President, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Smoking among young people a serious problem *****

Following is a question by the Hon Albert Chan and a reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question: »

Smoking among young people in the territory has become a serious problem. Many parents feel that there is nothing they can do to prevent their children from smoking. Many shops now unpack and sell the cigarettes on a piecemeal basis and their major sales targets are young students, including those from primary school. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) when and how the Government will enforce the legislation prohibiting the selling of cigarettes to young people under the age of 18 years which was passed by this Council on 19 October last year but has not been brought into effect; and

(b) what specific plans it has to dissuade young people from smoking?

40

Reply:

Mr President.

With effect from 28 April 1995, retailers have been prohibited from selling or giving for the purpose of promotion or advertisement, any tobacco product to a person under the age of 18. Offenders, under summary conviction, are liable to a maximum fine of $25,000. A sign must be displayed at the place of sale to remind retailers and purchasers alike of the law. Police officers on beat patrol together with other law enforcement agencies will look to see if retailers violate the law. Members of the public can also report contravention and should come forward as a witness after making their report. Their support and testimony is essential to the eventual conviction of offenders.

The Administration is also planning to introduce a further package of antismoking measures into this Council in December. This will prohibit the sale of cigarettes in packages of less than 20 sticks or individually, it will also impose tighter controls on tobacco advertising, since a strong correlation has been found among schoolchildren between smoking and attractiveness of cigarette advertisements.

Smoking is a lifestyle choice and young people look to their seniors and parents when making their choice. The positive influence and sustained persuasion of the family members and teachers are a great influence to young people to make an informed choice of not to smoke. Only through the collaborative effort of different sectors of society can the problem of smoking among the young be addressed. To this end, the Administration, the Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health and other voluntary agencies have dedicated much effort to promoting a smoke-free culture among community. We will continue to monitor the smoking prevalence among young people and consider introducing further legislative and publicity measures as appropriate. Meanwhile, parents and adults generally can best set an example for young people by not smoking themselves.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

41

No rules for police in handling autistic persons *****

Following is the question by the Hon Yeung Sum and a reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Peter Lai, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Complaints have been received from family members of autistic persons that police officers often fail to give due consideration to the difficulties of autistic persons in expressing themselves, when handling cases involving such persons. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council whether there are any guidelines or rules concerning the manner and attitude adopted by police officers when handling cases involving autistic persons; if so, what the details are; if not, why not?

Reply:

Mr President,

There are no specific guidelines or rules on the manner and attitude to be adopted by police officers when handling cases involving autistic persons.

This is because, apart from persons with autism, whose numbers are estimated to be 5,000 to 7,000 in Hong Kong, there could be many other people with different types and degrees of physical or mental disability. It simply is not practicable for the Police to draw up specific rules and guidelines to deal with each and every group of disabled persons.

However, the Police Force Procedures Manual has a section which deals with statement taking from mentally handicapped persons. There is a requirement that any person known or suspected to be mentally handicapped should only be interviewed or have a written statement recorded from them in the presence of their relative, guardian or other persons responsible for his care or for his custody; or someone who has experience of dealing with mentally handicapped persons, such as a social worker, outside the Police Force.

. < — <

Police officers are fully aware of the need to take into account the special circumstances of all handicapped people when carrying out their duties. In response to a suggestion made at this Council's Working Group on Separate Legislation for Mentally Handicapped in 1993, the Social Welfare Department has been helping the Police to develop and refine the curriculum of the Police Training School in order to improve the skills of police officers when dealing with a mentally handicapped person. Police officers are briefed on :-

- 42 -

: . •• • i

(a) the common circumstances under which they could come into contact with a handicapped person; and

(b) the steps they can take in identifying persons who are likely to be mentally handicapped, for example, by observing the appearance, gestures and behaviour of the individual, and by asking some simple questions.

As 70% of autistic persons are estimated to have some degree of mental handicap, the procedure and the training should help police officers to deal with them in the appropriate manner.

Finally, Mr President, I should just add that all police officers are under a duty to deal with all members of the public with courtesy and with care.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Voter registration in the new functional constituencies *****

- - •: 1 I - .1' ; . f > .

Following is a question by the Hon Eric Li Ka-cheung and a reply by the Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Nicholas Ng, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

The number of voters who are eligible to register in the nine new functional constituencies is about 2.7 million. Under the Boundary and Election Commission (Registration of Electors) (Functional Constituencies and Election Committee Constituency) Regulation, employers are required to furnish to the Registration and Electoral Office information about their employees within the prescribed time limit, failing which they are liable to a fine of $5,000. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council of the number of employers who have been convicted and fined because of a breach of the relevant provision of the above Regulation, and the effect that it has produced on the number of registered voters?

■.. qm

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• • • <. “Hi

43

Reply:

• • , ' " • .t'

Under the Boundary and Election Commission (Registration of Electors) , (Functional Constituencies and Election Committee Constituency) Regulation which was made by the independent Boundary and Election Commission this January, the Registration Officer may require employers to provide the name and identity card number of working persons in their establishments within a specified period. Failure to comply with such a requirement is liable to a fine of up to $5,000.

The information so obtained is used to facilitate the registration of working persons in the nine new functional constituencies. For working persons who are already registered as geographical electors and whose names and identity card numbers are included in the employers' returns, they will be registered in the appropriate functional constituencies through a simple notification arrangement. The information also facilitates the Registration and Electoral Office to reach out to working persons who have not yet been registered as geographical electors, inviting them to get registered as geographical and functional electors at the same time.

Since mid-January, the Registration and Electoral Office have sent letters to over 700,000 employers, requesting them to provide the required information. As at, the end of May 1995, the Registration and Electoral Office have received some 240,000 employers' returns covering about 1.8 million employee records. For those which have not responded, we suspect that many are shell companies or not active in business.

The response shows that many of the employers are civic minded. The penalty provision for non-compliance primarily serves as a deterrent and has not been invoked so far. As to any further action would be taken against employers who have not responded, this is a matter which the Boundary and Election Commission will be looking into.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

44

Public access channel

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Lee Cheuk-yan and a reply by the acting Secretary for Recreation and Culture, Mr Fred Ting, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday): t:'

t . . /•

:j j- >•..-• •• . . / t ’Hof’

Question:

With regard to the Recreation and Culture Branch's assessment that the establishment of a public access channel would not be suitable for the territory, will the Government inform this Council:

■■■ . ■ .......' ' ■ • .. . . . ..f ... ■-

(a) whether, despite the information supplied by the Branch concerning the successfill examples of establishing public access channels in other countries as well as examples overseas which have encountered problems, the Government has considered the setting up of a public access channel modelled on the successful examples in other countries; if not, why not; and

(b) whether, having regard to the concern expressed by the Recreation and Culture Branch about the "waste of public resources" because the "usage" and "public demand" for a public access channel cannot be determined, the Government has conducted any survey to substantiate «?■ that a public access channel is of interest to a minority only?

;■ O- ■ ...... -u’b.

Reply: ' - ‘ - '<

• ■ • ' •’ ' - ? ‘ ■'H ••

Mr President,

In determining whether a public access channel is suitable for Hong Kong, the Administration has drawn on overseas experience in operating the service. Not many examples are available. Public access television is not found anywhere in Asia. Even in the few western countries with public access television, the experience is not an entirely successful one. For example, those in the United States tend to be well funded and properly set up by cable franchisees, which help users with technical assistance. However, there are problems preventing unacceptable programming from being shown. This has led to abuse in many cases. To overcome the problem of unacceptable programming, as in the case of Canada, cable operators are given responsibility for programme content. This, therefore, tends to compromise the principle of free access and freedom of expression.

45

In the case of Hong Kong, we do not impose pre-censorship or pre-viewing of programmes. Instead, we rely on post-broadcast sanctions. However, introduction of any public access channel would require pre-viewing programmes so as to maintain the same quality and standards as existing TV broadcasting licensees and to ensure that the service would not be misused for political, commercial or pornographic purposes. Bearing in mind that television is a very powerful media and the impact it has on the viewing population, any damage done would be difficult to rectify.

As regards to the second part of the question, the subject of a public access service had been discussed at the LegCo Recreation and Culture Panel on numerous occasions since early 1994. Since the early part of 1994, these Panel discussions had been widely reported in the media, but despite this, only three written representations were received on the matter. Given the very real problems as identified by the Working Group in setting up a public access service in Hong Kong and the subsequent decision by the Executive Council on this matter, wider consultation amongst the public will not serve any useful purpose.

Thank you, Mr President.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

Quality of water supplied to Hong Kong from China *****

Following is a question by Rev the Hon Fung Chi-wood and a reply by the Secretary for Works, Mr James Blake, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

It is recently reported that despite the effort made by the Shenzhen authorities to improve their hygienic conditions in the Dongjiang River and Shenzhen Reservoir, which supply water to the territory, the pollution problem is still serious. With the . arrival of summer season in which infectious diseases are prevalent, the people in the territory arc concerned about this matter. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council whether;

(a) the Water Supplies Department and other Government departments have conducted regular checks of the quality of the water supplied to the territory from China; if so, whether they have detected any deterioration in water quality; and what measures have been put in place to ensure that the water quality is up to the standard required; and

46

(b) the Government has reflected the concern of local people to the relevant Chinese authorities; and whether the Government is aware of the measures taken by the Chinese authorities to solve the problem?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) The Water Supplies Department carries out routine tests at a frequency of three times daily to check the quality of raw water supplied from China. The latest equipment and techniques are used in a comprehensive monitoring programme for all water in the supply and distribution system, in accordance with the internationally acceptable practice.

Over the years WSD has noticed some fluctuations in water quality in the raw water supplies from the Dongjiang River and the Shenzhen Reservoir. These fluctuations are well within the treatment capabilities of our treatment works, and the potable water which supplied to consumers is up to the standard set by the department which complies with the requirements of the World Health Organisation.

Furthermore, the quality of raw water from the Dongjiang River has met the requirements laid down by international guidelines.

(b) There are regular liaison meetings between Hong Kong and Guangdong authorities on water quality matters. These include the Annual Business Meeting with myself leading for Hong Kong, and the Director of Guangdong Provincial Bureau of Water Conservancy and Hydro-Power leading for the Chinese side. In addition an Operating and Management Technical Sub-group meets at working levels, to discuss water quality control and operational matters, at least twice a year. Further ad hoc contacts by telephone can take place at any time if water quality or other operational reasons make this necessary.

The Guangdong authorities have followed up on the meetings with-actions whenever needed to improve the quality of water supplied to Hong Kong. These include legislative and enforcement actions to protect the water source from the Dongjiang River, as well as engineering measures such as the introduction of sewage diversion schemes and building additional sewage treatment works.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

47

Statutory registration system for social workers

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Hui Yin-fat and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok. in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council whether it will introduce legislation to set up a statutory registration system for social workers in the territory, if so, when it plans to introduce such legislation?

Reply:

The short answer to the first part of the question is 'yes'. On 30 May 1995, the Executive Council approved the drafting of a Government Bill to provide for the statutory' registration of social workers in I long Kong.

The Bill will establish a Board -

(a) to register and discipline "registered social workers" and "enrolled social

workers";

(b) to set the qualifications needed for registration and assess those qualifications: and

(c) to issue a Code of Practice or Code of Conduct.

We also propose that the Board would comprise a majority elected by and from the Council made up of registered social workers with the rest appointed by the Governor and representing, for example, employers, academics and the community at large.

The Bill would restrict the use of titles such as "registered social worker" etc. to those who are registered, while not preventing those who are not registered from providing social work or social welfare services.

48

We have been discussing our proposals with the Hon Hui Yin-fat and other Members of the Hong Kong Social Welfare Personnel Registration Council and have reached a wide measure of understanding on these issues. We will be continuing our discussions with them and the profession as a whole as we develop our proposals further and draft the legislation.

We aim to introduce this Bill into the Legislative Council during its next session.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

Locations of bus stop cause obstruction *****

Following is a question by the Hon Roger Luk Koon-hoo and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma. in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

As many franchised bus stops in the urban area arc located at road junctions or the kerb side of major trunk roads causing unnecessary obstruction to other road users, will the Administration inform this Council whether there are plans to relocate these bus stops and what are the criteria for the selection of locations of bus stops in the urban area?

Reply:

Mr President.

The factors taken into account in determining the locations for bus stops include passenger demand, safety and convenience, the availability of kerb side space, traffic circulation and road safety.

49

As a general rule, bus stops are not located within 15 metres of a road junction, on trunk roads or elevated sections of primary distributor roads. However, given limited road space in the urban areas and the network of bus routes designed to serve the needs of the travelling public, it is inevitable that many bus stops have to be located on major thoroughfares e.g. Gloucester Road and Lung Cheung Road. Wherever possible, bus laybys arid service lanes are provided to minimise obstruction to other vehicles.

The Transport Department considers all suggestions and complaints about the location of bus stops and. when appropriate, will relocate bus stops in response to changes in passenger demand and traffic conditions.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

Proposed bypass and Eastern Corridor Link *****

Following is a question by the Hon Miriam Lau Kin-yee and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Regarding the proposed Central-Wanchai Bypass and Island I .astern Corridor Link, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the design and construction programme of the whole project:

(b) of the progress of construction works to date; and

(c) whether a dual two-lane or a dual three-lane design will be adopted: what is the planned traffic capacity, and when such capacity is expected to be reached?

- 50 -

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) Design and Construction Programme of the Project

Site investigation work for the proposed Central-Wanchai Bypass (CWB) and Island Eastern Corridor Link (IECL) started in March 1995, for completion in February 1996. Since the road will be built on reclaimed land, the detailed design and construction will be carried out in stages, matching the various phases of the reclamation. On this basis, design work will take place from June 1995 to October 1999. Administrative and statutory procedures will be completed and funds sought with a view to construction starting in January 1997 for completion by December 2003.

(b) Progress of Construction Works to Date

Construction has yet to begin. However site investigations commenced in March 1995 and work on the detailed design will start this month, in accordance with the programme set out in paragraph (a) above.

(c) Planned Capacity of the New Road System

The CWB will be a dual-two lane road, with capacity for 3.400 vehicles per hour in each direction, while the IECL will be dual-four lane with capacity for 6.700 vehicles per hour in each direction. When account is taken of the 15 traffic lanes that will run parallel to the CWB alignment and the 10 traffic lanes that will run parallel to the IECL alignment, the new road system is expected to be adequate to meet demand at least up to the year 2011.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

51

Illegal sale of marked oil

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Zachary Wong and a written reply the Secretary for the Treasury, Mr K C Kwong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the illegal sale of marked oil, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the volume of cases relating to the illegal sale of marked oil, together with the volume of oil seized and the amount of tax involved, in the last three years; and of the penalty generally imposed on the accused;

(b) whether the number of cases has indicated an upward trend, if so, whether it is related to the leniency of sentences passed; and

(c) how the illegal sale of marked oil can be eradicated more effectively; whether the authorities concerned are adequately staffed; if not, whether additional staff will be provided?

Reply:

(a) The information sought by the Honourable Member is set out in the following two tables -

1992-93 1993-94 1994-95

Misuse of marked oil and detreated oil

Cases detected 268 326 (+22%) 461 (+41%)

Seizures (litre) 130.438 64,576 (-50%) 699,774 (+984%)

Duty Potential ($) 268,826 146,609 (-45%) 1,728,530 (+1079%)

Statistics on Penalties *

1992 1993 1994

Statutory maximum penalty under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance (Cap. 109): • use or place marked oil in the fuel tank of a motor vehicle or sell for this purpose: Fine $100,000 and 2 year imprisonment • remove any marker or colouring substance from marked oil: Fine $5,000 and 6 month imprisonment

Range of penalty imposed Fine: $200 - $20,000 Fine: $500-$12,000 Fine: $500 -$10,000

* Statistics based on financial year are not available.

52

(b) The volume of seizures in the past three years has not shown a consistent trend. It dropped in 1993-94 and then increased substantially in 1994-95. Nor can we draw any clear correlation between the sentences imposed and the number of cases of contraventions. Nevertheless, we consider that there is a need to increase the maximum fines substantially to maintain their deterrent effect. For this purpose, we are planning to introduce amendments within this legislative session to raise the present maximum fines in respect of the offences under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance (Cap. 109) set out in (a) above from $5,000 to $50,000 and from $100,000 to $200,000 respectively.

(c) The Government tackles the misuse of marked diesel oil through vigorous enforcement action. The Customs and Excise Department has deployed one dedicated team (comprising seven officers) to investigate the illegal import of diesel oil and illicit distribution and use of marked oil. In addition, the Department has eight patrol teams (each comprising seven officers) which devote about 25% of their time to combat the illicit sale and use of diesel oil at street level, paying special attention to illegal oil filling operations. We keep under constant review the resources deployed on enforcement work. Wc also encourage the public to provide information on activities involving the misuse of diesel oil through an incentive scheme which offers rewards to informers.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Medical, welfare and education services for Island District *****

Following is a question by the Hon Lee Wing-tat and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare. Mrs Katherine Fok. in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

As the level of medical, welfare and education services provided by the Government in some areas of the Island District (such as Tai O, Lamma and Peng Chau) falls short of that enjoyed by the people in urban areas, will the Government inform this Council whether it has any plans to improve the level of such services in the Island District so as to bring it on par with that enjoyed by the people in urban areas; if so. what the details of the plans arc; if not. why not?

53

Reply:

To achieve optimal use of resources, medical and health facilities are planned in accordance with the geographical distribution of population.

General out-patient clinics are provided on the larger islands where there is a bigger population. The Department of Health operates a total of five clinics on Lantau, Peng Chau and Cheung Chau, operating either full-time or part-time. These provide out-patient medical services, maternal and child health services, maternity, tuberculosis and chest services. Four of the clinics provide 24-hour first aid services. Remote and sparsely populated areas are served by a floating clinic.

In addition to a general out-patient clinic, the St John's Hospital on Cheung Chau provides 93 beds, 24-hour emergency treatment and other general hospital services for Islands District residents.

Patients on the outlying islands who require secondary or tertiary care are referred by primary care physicians to hospitals or clinics on the mainland for treatment. Emergency transfer of accident and emergency patients to mainland hospitals is provided either by helicopter or police launch.

The average occupancy rate for St John's Hospital in 1993/94 was only about 55 per cent. Clinic services are similarly not yet fully utilised. Having regard to this, the present level of medical and health services for Islands District is considered adequate and on par with the urban area provision.

As for welfare services, a meaningful comparison between districts is possible only with regard to those services where population-based planning standards are adopted. All of these types of services (listed in the appendix) as provided in Island District meet the prescribed standards, except for places in care and attention homes for elderly persons where there is currently a shortfall of 50 places. This shortfall will, however, disappear on the completion of the Chung Shak Hei (Cheung Chau) Home for the aged in 1996/97.

The Administration takes a flexible approach in providing necessary services even when such are not strictly justified under the current planning standards. So. whereas the population of Island District may not justify the establishment of certain full-fledged welfare facilities according to the planning standards, a more flexible approach has been adopted, for example, by setting up youth centres (as in Mui Wo and Ping Chau) or by providing extension and outreaching services from units in the Central and Western District, as in the case of family life education programmes and family service centre services offered to families in Island District.

54

Some services, such as many rehabilitation services, are provided on a territorywide rather than on a District-by-District basis. Comparison between the Island District and the urban areas is neither possible nor appropriate in these cases. Residents of Island District in need of these types of services are fully entitled to use the facilities provided on a territory-wide basis.

As for education services, all such services provided in the Island District meet the Government's planning standards. There is no difference in the level of services enjoyed by people in urban areas and people living on the islands.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Petitions received by Government House *****

Following is a question by the Hon Tam Yiu-chung and a written reply by the acting Chief Secretary, the Hon Michael Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council of:

(a) the number of petitions received by Government House during the past

year; and

(b) the breakdown of the types of articles which some organisations have presented to the Governor when lodging petitions; and how these articles have been dealt with by the Governor?

Reply:

(a) Government House received 1,258 petitions in 1994.

(b) The types of articles received can be broken down into the following categories :-

- 55 -

(1) letters (1,252);

(2) compilations of signatures (35);

(3) banners (37) and

(4) miscellaneous items (55).

The letters are kept on file in Government House and in the policy branches concerned. The other items are disposed of after follow-up action has been initiated.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

Measures to keep inflation rate within Government estimate *****

Following is a question by Dr the Hon David Li and a written reply by the acting Financial Secretary, the Hon T II Chau, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

As Japan is our second largest importer, supplying almost 16% of the territory's imports and 24% of retained imports, the current appreciation of the Japanese Yen is having a direct impact on the territory's inflation. Moreover, the average rate of inflation for the first quarter of this year was 9.5%, one percentage point higher than the Government's original estimate. In particular, those components in the CPI having a high import content, such as clothing, footwear and miscellaneous goods showed rather faster price increases. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council what are the short-term and long-term measures which the Government will implement in order to keep the inflation rate within Government's estimate and maintain the territory's competitiveness?

Reply :

In the May update of the economic forecast for 1995. we have revised the forecast of consumer price inflation, in terms of the Consumer Price Index (A), upwards from 8.5% to 9.0%. in the light of the higher actual outturn in the first four months of the vear.

56

In recent months, consumer prices have come under greater pressure from the higher import prices, due to a weakened Hong Kong dollar in line with the US dollar, faster increases in world commodity and product prices, and the high inflation in China. The prices of goods imported from Japan. Taiwan and China have shown more distinct pick-ups. The various external factors contributing to greater imported inflation are, however, beyond the Government’s control. In the circumstances, Hong Kong’s importers have an important role to play in reducing the impact of imported inflation on local consumers by seeking cheaper supplies from more diversified sources.

On locally-generated inflation, there are nevertheless some helpful developments. Following the decline in the prices of residential flats since April last year, rentals of flats have also softened more recently. This should have a dampening effect on the rental component of the CPI, albeit with a time lag. Prices and rentals for office space and shop premises have likewise moderated from their peak levels. This should have a dampening effect on the cost of doing business in Hong Kong. Labour market conditions have eased somewhat in the first quarter. This should help to relieve pressures on local resources and hence domestic inflation.

It is clear, however, that the level of inflation in Hong Kong is still high. Ongoing vigilance in the inflation situation is therefore necessary. Accordingly, we continue to exercise firm control over government expenditure, and avoid fuelling inflation through excessive tax cuts. We continue to restrain growth of the civil service, and seek to follow rather than lead the market in its pay increase.

For the longer term, we arc working intensively to increase the supply of land and to remove bottlenecks on growth by implementing our infrastructure programmes. On human resources, we adopt a more pro-active approach in assisting the unemployed by expanding the services on job matching and placement. In addition, various training and retraining courses are run to better equip our workers with new skills required by the market. There is, moreover, a general improvement in education opportunities, particularly on tertiary education. All these measures should contribute to raising our productive capacity and efficiency, thereby enhancing our overall competitiveness and indirectly also helping to contain inflation.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

57

Vacant public rental flats ♦ * ♦ * *

Following is a question by the Hon Emily Lau Wai-hing and a written reply by the Secretary for Housing, Mr Dominic Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Figures released recently by the Housing Authority show that as at the end of March this year, there are over 14,000 vacant public rental flats, of which a third have been unoccupied for at least one year. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) how many of these vacant flats have never been allocated and the reasons for this; and for the other vacant flats which have previously been allocated, could the Government provide a breakdown by the number of times of allocation;

(b) of the number of flats remaining unoccupied for one year and above, together with a breakdown by location of the housing estates concerned, duration of vacancy, numbers of flats and reasons for such flats remaining vacant; and whether all these flats have ever been allocated;

(c) of the total number of casual vacancies out of the 14,000-plus vacant flats; what procedures have to be completed before these flats can become available for re-allocation; and how long it will take to complete those procedures; and

(d) whether any measures will be adopted to reduce the number of vacant flats so that people in need can be allocated public housing units as soon as possible?

Answer:

Mr President,

At the end of March 1995, there were about 14,000 vacant public rental flats, representing about 2 per cent of the total stock. Of these, 6,800 flats were reserved for clearance and redevelopment exercises. 4,400 flats were under offer to applicants or were being processed for allocation, and 2,800 flats were under refurbishment. Of the 11,200 lettable flats, 1,257 were vacant for one year or more.

58

Answers to the four specific points raised are :

(a) Among the 1,257 flats vacant for one year or more, about 600 have never been allocated. They have been reserved for various clearance and redevelopment exercises which may take nine to 24 months to complete, depending on the scale of the exercise concerned. For the remaining flats, the number of offers made to eligible households ranges from one to 39. No breakdown is ready available.

(b) The flats reserved for clearance or redevelopment exercises, which have been unoccupied for one year or more, are mainly in Tin Shui, Kwai Shing (East), Cheung Hang and On Yam Estates as shown below :

Estate Vacant flats

Tin Shui 222

Kwai Shing (East) 145

Cheung Hang 139

On Yam 107

613

The other flats vacant for one year or more are scattered over a hundred housing estates, and are mostly unpopular and non-self-contained flats without lift service, or are stigmatised by incidents of homicide or suicide. As indicated at (a) above, the number of offers made to eligible households ranges from one to 39. No further breakdown by duration of vacancy for both categories is readily available.

(c) Among the 14,000 vacant flats, 6,300 are vacated flats requiring refurbishment which usually takes three months. On average, two allocations will have to be made before a flat is eventually let. This means that the total time taken for a vacant flat to be refurbished, allocated and occupied is usually around six months.

(d) In order to reduce the vacancy period of flats under refurbishment, the Housing Department has introduced a centralised allocation system under which flats are allocated one month before refurbishment is completed. A working group has been set up recently to examine ways to reduce the number and period of other flats left vacant.

End/Wednesday. June 7, 1995

59

Average length of stay in public hospitals *****

Following is a question by the Hon Zachary Wong Wai-yin and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare. Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the average hospitalisation of period of patients in each of the public hospitals in the last three years; and

(b) whether there is an indication of a downward trend in the hospitalisation period of patients in certain public hospitals; if so, what the reasons are and whether it is due to a shortage of hospital beds?

Reply:

A breakdown on the average length of stay in each public hospital over the last three years is provided in the Appendix. There is no evidence to indicate a consistent downward trend during the period.

In general, the average length of stay is affected by rationalisation of service through hospital clustering or networking, advancement of medical technology, development of ambulatory care or outreach medical services and improved rehabilitation. The supply and demand of hospital beds has no direct relevance in this regard.

60

Appendix

Breakdown on Average Length of Stay (1992/93- 1994/95)

1992/93 1993/94 1994/95

Hong Kong

Alice Ho Miu Ling Nethersole Hospital (Note 1) 5.1 4.7 N/A

Cheshire Home Chung Hum Kok 610.8 375.5 453.3

Duchess of Kent Children's Hospital 14.7 13.1 18.8

Fung Yiu King Convalescent Hospital 28.7 26.3 29.9

Grantham Hospital 22.1 19.0 15.6

Maclehose Medical Rehabilitation Centre 57.5 55.5 62.6

Nam Long Hospital 55.5 56.0 39.8

Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital (Note 2) N/A 6.0 6.2

Queen Mary Hospital 5.6 5.7 5.5

Ruttonjee Hospital 21.5 14.2 10.4

St John Hospital 37.3 24.6 21.9

Tang Shiu Kin Hospital 6.2 7.5 7.0

Tsan Yuk Hospital 4.7 5.2 4.2

Tung Wah Eastern Hospital 8.6 10.5 11.2

Tung Wah Hospital 17.4 16.7 15.6

Kowloon

Caritas Medical Centre 10.2 10.4 9.9

Hong Kong Buddhist Hospital 12.8 12.8 11.6

Hong Kong Eye Hospital (Note 3) N/A N/A N/A

Kowloon Hospital 18.5 19.5 21.3

Kwong Wah Hospital 6.6 6.3 5.9

Margaret Trench Medical Rehabilitation Centre 61.1 65.9 59.7

Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital 7.4 7.4 7.8

Queen Elizabeth Hospital 6.6 6.5 6.2

United Christian Hospital 5.5 5.1 5.0

Wong Tai Sin Infirmary 59.1 57.8 56.4

61

N wT.rritnries

Castle Peak Hospital 251.6 241.6 243.2

Cheshire Home (Shatin) 23.4 22.6 25.8

Fanling Hospital 19.5 20.9 18.0

Haven of Hope Hospital 34.3 28.8 27.0

Kwai Chung Hospital 202.5 191.1 184.0

Lai Chi Kok Hospital 2794.0 5216.2 3255.6

Pok Oi Hospital 8.3 9.0 10.0

Prince of Wales Hospital 5.8 5.4 5.2

Princess Margaret Hospital 4.9 6.3 6.4

Shatin Infirmary & Convalescent Hospital 87.9 54.1 48.3

Siu Lam Hospital (Note 4) N/A 548.7 1118.1

Tiien Mun Hospital 7.7 7.2 7.0

Yan Chai Hospital 7.8 8.3 7.8

Total 10.8 10.9 10.4


Note 1 : closed with effect from 9/93 u:

Note 2 : operated with effect from 10/93

Note 3 : no in-patient facilities

Note 4 : re-opened in 9/93

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

* i

Privately-run residents’ coach service

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Miriam Lau and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, at the Legislative Council today . (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding privately-run residents’ coach services, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of applications for a licence to operate residents' coach routes received by the Government, and the success rate of such applications, in the past three years;

- 62

(b) of the criteria used in determining whether approval will be granted to such applications; and

(c) whether it has any information concerning the number of residents' coach routes which are being operated without the relevant department's approval, and whether it will consider regulating or banning these services?

Reply:

Mr President,

In the past three years, the Transport Department received a total of 117 applications for the operation of residential coach services. Overall the success rate of applications which have been processed is about 60%. A detailed breakdown is as follows -

Being ,

Successful Unsuccessful Processed Total

1992/93 13 11 0 24

1993/94 17 9 0 26

1994/95 25 19 23 • > 67

Total 55 39 23 117

The purpose of providing residential coach services is to supplement franchised bus services, particularly during peak hours. In considering applications for residential coach services, the Transport Department takes into account the following factors:

'•>09'

(a) the need for the service;

(b) the level, quality and adequacy of services being provided or planned by other public transport operators;

• • i ? . ‘ ; •

(c) traffic conditions along the proposed routing and availability of terminal facilities in the areas to be served; and

Ob 1

(d) the support and preference of users of the service.

63

If the application is considered acceptable, a passenger service licence will be granted by the Transport Department to a new operator stipulating the conditions for the operation of the residents' service in question.

Any unauthorised operation of residential coach services usually come to light quickly. The Transport Department will act on information and has dealt with a total of 38 cases of such unauthorised services in the past three years. If a case is substantiated, the Transport Department will issue a written warning to the operator to stop the unauthorised service. This has generally proven to be effective as most such services have been withdrawn almost immediately. In those relatively rare instances where repeated warnings are ignored, the passenger service licences of the operators will be cancelled and. if the Commissioner for Transport deems it appropriate, he will refer the case to the Police for investigation and prosecution.

End/Wednesday, June 7. 1995

Surveys on benzene content of unleaded petrol *****

Following is a question by Rev the Hon Fung Chi-wood and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands. Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

The Hndings of a research conducted in Britain last year indicate that the benzene content of unleaded petrol is excessively high, and that vehicles which are not equipped with catalytic converters cannot effectively eliminate this carcinogen in the petrol and arc thus unsuitable to use unleaded petrol. Despite the carcinogenic nature of benzene, the Environmental Protection Department has still not informed the public of the benzene content of unleaded petrol. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) whether any research has been conducted on the benzene content of unleaded petrol;

(b) of the anticipated benzene content in the air in the territory in each of the next ten years:

64

(c) whether there is any difference between the readings of benzene content in the air recorded by the air quality monitoring stations set up at the roof-top of buildings and that recorded at the ground level; and

(d) whether consideration will be given to encouraging owners of vehicles which are not equipped with catalytic converters to use leaded petrol so as to reduce the level of carcinogen in the air?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) Fuel surveys conducted by the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) show that the average benzene content for unleaded petrol is 3.4%, while that for leaded petrol is 3.2%. Both are below the U K standard of 5%.

(b) As 1 informed this Council on 17 May in answer to another Question on benzene (LegCo Question 5 (Oral)), the current benzene level is about 3-7 microgrammes per cubic metre. This is extremely low. It is not possible to provide a precise year-by-year prediction of benzene levels. However, since all petrol vehicles imported into Hong Kong after 1992 are required to be fitted with catalytic converters, we expect the ambient benzene level to remain low in the coming years.

(c) Benzene levels at road sides are not significantly different from those recorded at roof-top monitoring sites.

(d) As the difference in benzene content between leaded and unleaded petrol is small, and as lead is itself a major pollutant which could accumulate in human bodies and cause adverse effects on the central nervous systems, especially among children, it is not appropriate to encourage vehicles without catalytic converters to revert back to use leaded petrol.

End/Wednesday. June 7. 1995

65

Health education for students ♦ * * ♦ ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Huang Chen-ya and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of hours of health education classes attended by primary and secondary school students each year;

(b) what plans have been drawn up by the Education Department to improve and update the syllabus of primary school health education which has not been revised since the publication of its first edition in 1980; and

(c) what education do secondary school students receive regarding the prevention of critical illnesses like AIDS, heart disease, stroke and cancer;

(d) what qualifications teachers of health education are required to possess and what continuous training they receive?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) For primary schools, the average number of hours on health education attended by students is 25 each year. In secondary schools, health education is taught through formal subjects (e.g. Social Studies, Biology etc), cross-curricular lessons on selected topics (e.g. sex education, civic . education etc) as well as through the informal curriculum, rhe number of hours devoted to health education varies with the class level and with the individual school, ranging from 40 hours to over 80 hours per student per year. In addition, many primary and secondary schools organise informal sessions on health related topics for their students.

66

(b) The Education Department has restructured the syllabus of primary school health education by integrating Social Studies, Primary Science and Health Education into a new core subject of General Studies. The new General Studies syllabus will be introduced in 1996.

(c) As indicated in para (a) above, secondary school students are taught through the formal curriculum about different diseases like heart diseases, cancer, AIDS and major infectious diseases including their prevention. Details of the illness covered are annexed. Similar topics are also covered through cross-curricular lessons on civic education, moral education and sex education. In addition, students are encouraged to take part in extra-curricular activities on health education such as the Student Health Ambassadors Training Project organised by the Health Department. This project aims to provide health education to secondary school pupils through a training programme consisting of a series of lectures and site visits.

(d) Most if not all teachers of health education in primary schools should have attended this subject in their pre-service or in-service teacher education courses in the former Colleges of Education or the new Institute of Education. Secondary school teachers teaching subjects related to health education are usually subject-trained. On continuous training, the Education Department in conjunction with the Health Department organises regular in-service teacher education courses and seminars on health education for teachers for both the primary and secondary level.

67

Annex

Critical Illnesses as taught in the school curriculum.

Secondary

Subject Level Topic

Social Studies SI-S3 My Health - Personal Hygiene - Balanced Diet and Food Hygiene - Exercise and Rest Selected Types of Diseases in Hong Kong - airborne diseases, foodbome diseases, heart diseases and cancer AIDS Awareness and Cancer Education

Economic and Public Affairs • S1-S2 Public Health - Indicators of good public health - Medical services in Hong Kong - Other efforts of government to promote public health : Health education; Prevention and control of infectious diseases

Biology (Advanced Level) S6-S7 Microorganisms and diseases : A Review of common human diseases and their causative microorganisms, social aspects of AIDS A brief review of methods and cost to control the spread of diseases

Biology S4-S5 The heart and blood vessels: The structure and action of the heart

68

Human Biology S4-5 Healthy living and factors affecting health - Healthy living includes: physical, mental and social health. A general introduction to a balanced diet. - Dietary habits and their effects on the body - A general account on the causes of stress and means to reduce stress - A general introduction to drug abuse, alcoholism, tobacco smoking and overeating as habits affecting health Causes and prevention of infectious diseases - An introduction to bacteria viruses, fungi and protozoans disease causing microorganisms - The spread of infectious disease by air, water, food, vectors and by contact. Sexually transmitted diseases - The spread of STDS and the preventive measures against the spread of STDS as exemplified by syphilis, gonorrhoea and AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome)

Physical Education S4-5 Effect of regular exercise for the maintenance of good general health and well being - Exercise effect on the cardio-respiratory system; the alleviating of coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and obesity

End/Wednesday, June 7, .1995

69

Hepatitis cases among prisoners * ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Huang Chen-ya and a written reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Peter Lai, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council of:

(a) the number of cases and incidence of acute Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C respectively among prisoners in each of the past three years; and

(b) the incidence of acute Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C respectively among the public as compared with those among prisoners?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) The number of reported Hepatitis B cases among prisoners over the last three years is -

Year

Cases

1992

1993

1994

10

17

27

There have not been any reported cases of Hepatitis C among prisoners over this period.

70

(b) According to the Director of Health, the numbers of reported cases of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in the general population over the last three years, including those cases in the prison population, are -

Year Hepatitis B Cases Hepatitis C Cases

1992 157

1993 116

1994 102 2

However, these figures may not represent the total number of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C cases occurring in Hong Kong. From experience, not all cases of Hepatitis are reported or diagnosed as such. We cannot, therefore, accurately compare the incidence of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C in the general population with that among prisoners.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

Compassionate rehousing scheme for divorced tenants *****

Following is a question by the Hon Albert Chan and a written reply by the Security for Housing, Mr Dominic Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

It is learnt that since its establishment, the Hong Kong Housing Society (HKHS) has not laid down any policy on the splitting of tenancies on compassionate grounds for tenants of rental housing estates under its management. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council whether:

(a) it will provide assistance to divorced tenants of HKHS's rental flats who have to move out of their flats but are unable to find alternative accommodation due to the lack of financial resources;

(b) it is aware of the reasons why the HKHS refuses to offer separate rental fiats for a couple whose divorce has been declared by the court; and

71

(c) it will require the HKHS to formulate a policy on the splitting of tenancies on compassionate grounds similar to that of the Housing Authority so as to enable divorced couples to live separately?

Answer:

Mr President,

(a) The Compassionate Rehousing Scheme, administered by the Housing Authority, caters for people in the territory with an urgent need for housing as a result of special medical or social problems. Public rental housing may be offered, subject to the assessment by and recommendation of the Social Welfare Department. The scope of the scheme was extended in 1991 to cover the urgent housing needs of those seeking divorce. Like people living in other types of accommodation, divorced tenants living in rental flats of the Housing Society may also apply for compassionate rehousing under this scheme.

(b) The Housing Society normally allows the divorced party who has been granted custody of the children to continue to occupy the flat previously occupied by both spouses. If the party concerned is not the principal tenant of the flat, the Housing Society will persuade the principal tenant to give up the tenancy. If persuasion fails, the Housing Society may serve a notice to quit. Non-compliance will be dealt with in the District Court. Because of its small number of rental flats and the low turnover rate, the Housing Society does not have adequate resources to grant extra flats to divorced tenants. Those with housing difficulties are advised to contact the Social Welfare Department with a view to applying for assistance under the Compassionate Rehousing Scheme.

(c) Since the Compassionate Rehousing Scheme already meets the purpose, it is not necessary to require the Housing Society to set up a new scheme for divorced tenants.

End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

72

Q’t.

Demand and supply of special school places ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Tik Chi-yuen and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council of: »’ -.4 /I

(a) the demand and supply in respect of special school places in various districts for the next academic year;

' a...- .

■; : ' : .j' ,

(b) the number of classes and the size of different types of classes in special schools, including the classes for the severely mentally handicapped, the moderately mentally handicapped, the mildly mentally handicapped and the physically handicapped, as well as the skills opportunity classes, the classes for the deaf, the blind, the maladjusted and the multihandicapped, in each of the past ten years; and

(c) the turnover rates of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech

therapists in special schools in the past three years?

Reply:

Mr President,

* _• .!• - I. -

Special school places are provided for pupils who have more complex special educational needs and/or who cannot benefit from education in ordinary schools because of the severity of their disability.

'■< « k.

(a) The estimated demand and supply of special school places by category and by district for 1995/96 school year is set out at Annex A. Special school places are provided on a territory-wide basis although in practice special schools have been built as far as practicable in areas with demonstrated demand. -

73

(b)

(c)

The provision of different types of special school places including the class size and the number of classes for each of the last 10 years is set out at Annex B. Skills opportunity schools have not been included because they are not classified as special schools. With the exception of blind children with mental handicap, multi- handicapped children are placed in special schools appropriate to their major handicap. Their provision is, therefore, not shown separately.

The wastage rates of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech therapists for the past three years are as follows :

Wastage Rates

2W 22/21 21/24

Physiotherapist 41.7% 73.4% 69.6%

Occupational therapist 12.5% 22.6% 49.4%

Speech therapist 33.3% 42.9% 33.3%

In this context, wastage rate is defined as the number of staff who have left their posts during the school year expressed as a percentage of the strength in their relevant grade at the beginning of that school year.

Estimated No, of Special Schools Places for 1995/96

(Projection made in June 1995)

BL -DF 4.RHESki .^MOMItCi^ SMH Y- HS TOTAL

Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply Demand Supply

CW 7 23 25 49 107 70 31

WC 4 14 140 15 29 64 200 42 100 18 64

6a 15 51 90 56 108 234 200 153 190 67 72

S 7 210 24 26 200 52 240 111 140 73 180 32

HKSub-T 33 210 112 230 122 200 238 240 516 540 338 470 148 136

- ■ ' •. •

YTM 7 23 24 48 103 200 68 29

SSP 8 27 30 58 420 124 200 82 130 36 320

KC 9 29 32 62 105 133 200 68 100 38

WTS 10 33 270 36 69 90 149 98 200 43

CT 13 44 47 230 94 198 200 130 190 57

KlriS ub-T 47 0 156 270 169 230 331 615 707 800 466 620 203 320

K&T 16 51 240 55 120 110 236 360 155 220 68 72

rw 7 22 24 40 45 98 64 28 64

FM - •• 18 60 65 130 277 300 182 150 79

YL 12 41 47 89 198 200 129 100 57

N 9 28 31 61 133 240 87 30 38

fp 11 35 39 78 168 110 110 48 120

ST 18 62 68 100 136 287 400 189 160 82

SK 8 24 28 53 117 200 77 34 80

Is 1 2 3 5 75 11 8 3

NTSub-T 100 0 325 240 360 260 707 75 1525 1700 1001 770 437 336

•T

JTOTAL »■ 180 210 593 740 $51 690 1276 930 2748 3040 1805 1860 788 792 - 499 8041‘ 8761

Note:

BL Blind

DF: Deaf

* excluding hospital school, the provision of such places is planned according to actual need

PH: Physically Handicapped

MAL Maladjusted

Ml MH: Mildly Mentally Handicapped

MOMH: Moderately Mentally Hancficapped

SMH: Severely Mentally Handicapped

HS: Hospital School at 15 different locations

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Provision of Special Educadon Scneol Places by Category 198S/86 199445

Category iwwa . I- .. 1IIM7-. ; 1987785 XT'. . -.laaMO-s . 138946

Primary 5accr>laxy<ic Pnnary ;'F> ’ Mcchdary*.< Pnmiiy. Jecc-ndsry ' Prtfair/fciL** Jsccnd xry Primary- • Secondary

Bind Race* 165 75 185 75 106 45 105 45 105 45

Classes II 5 11 5 7 3 7 3 7 3

Class Stea 15 15 15 15 1$ 15 15 15 15 15

Bind with Places 20 20 20 20 30 20 30 30 30 30

MtvZel Claims 2 2 2 2 3 2 3 3 3 3

Handicap Class Sae 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 W 10 10

Deal Places 510 280 490 300 480 310 480 310 470 310

Classas 51 28 49 30 48 31 48 31 47 31

Class Sae 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 W 10 10

Phytcalhy Places 460 190 460 190 460 190 480 210 480 210

Class Sde 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10

Hospaal Psycnkatnc Places 43 8 48 8 48 16 48 16 46 16

School Classes fl 1 6 1 6 2 6 2 6 2

Class Size 8 8 fl 8 8 8 8 8 fl 8

Non-piycfttainc Places 285 20 270 40 285 40 285 40 285 40

Ctassas 19 2 18 4 19 4 19 4 19 4

Cass Size 15 10 15 10 15 10 15 10 15 10

MahdXuted Places 555 870 555 870 540 885 540 805 540 865

Classes 36(1) 42 (16} 36(1} 42 (16) 35 U) 43(18) 35(t> 43(18) 35(1) 43(16)

Class Size 15 9 15 • 15 f 15 a 15 a 15 8 15 8 15 8 15 8 tSf

M&fiy Merts*? Places 1380 800 1380 840 1420 860 1600 MO 1040 MO

Hanflcapped Classes 69 40 69 42 71 43 80 47 82 47

Class Sae 20 20 1 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20

Modwaie-y Places IMO 530 1 1060 550 1070 580 11W . 840 1110 660

Mental Classes IM 53 ’ 105 55 107 58 Ill 64 lit 66

HfMwapfwl Class Stea 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 to 10

Severely Places 392 144 456 144 464 168 496 224 486 224

Mcrtdty Classes 49 18 67 18 58 21 62 28 St 28

Hanflcapped Class Stea 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 6 8

Stow Learning Pieces - 300 300 300 300 300

Classes 15 15 15 15 a 15

Class Sire 20 20 20 * 20 20

Sub-toUI Places 4855 3237 4894 3337 4902 3414 6174 3640 6186 3tW

Classes 393 225 399 233 400 241 419 261 419 263

Total Places 8992 £4 ft 8231 83 16 88 14 88 56

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( ) No. of classes ka Hong Koog Sea School

• Except tof Hong Keog See School which had 30 pepCs per dess

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End/Wednesday, June 7, 1995

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Primary'. • Secondary Primary. Secondary/.^ ’Hrrliry^ Secondary^* Pit'mir/Oa ♦condzry- Primary.-'-. -eccnduy

Bind Puces CIUSO3 Chat Slzs iOS 7 15 45 3 15 IQS 7 15 45 3 15 IOS 7 15 45 3 15 105 7 15 45 3 15 105 7 15 45 3 15

Sirrfvrtii MenUd Handicap Pieces Classes Class Size 30 3 10 30 3 10 X 3 10 30 3 10 X 3 10 30 3 10 X 3 10 30 3 10 X 3 10 X 3 10

Deaf Places C lassos Class Size 430 43 10 330 33 10 MO 38 10 360 36 10 370 37 10 370 37 to 350 35 to 390 39 W S|82 39C 39 10

PhyucaDy Mandxappod Places Classes Ciass Size 480 48 10 210 21 10 490 46 10 210 .. 21 10 480 48 10 210 21 10 480 48 10 210 21 10 460 46 10 230 23 10

Hos^al School Psychiatric Pieces Classes Class See 48 8 8 16 2 • 48 6 8 24 3 8 48 • 8 24 3 8 48 6 8 24 B 64 8 24 3 8

»»Oir pSyCIl *3U)C Places Classes Class Size 285 19 15 40 4 10 315 21 15 40 4 10 315 21 15 40 4 to 315 21 15 40 4 10 3X 22 15 . <o 4 10

Maladjusted Pieces Classes Class Sie 510 34 15 - 900 43(17) 15 8 515 34 15 900 «(17) 15 8 495 33 15 885 43 (16) 15 8 450 X 15 450 X 15 450 X 15 480 32 15

MAfly Menially Handicapped Places Classes Class Size 1660 83 20 1040 52 20 1760 88 26 1140 57 20 1780 89 20 1140 57 20 1820 91 X 1140 57 2C 1800 90 20 1180 59 X

Moderately MenlaUy Handicapped Places Classes Class Size 1120 680 IMO 116 10 720 72 to 1140 720 1110 72D 1148 730

10 10 10 72 to 111 10 72 tc 140 10 73 10

Se rarefy Places 472 232 4M 6£ 240 30 a 496 62 256 32 4 504 83 8 266 32 8

Mentally Handicapped Classes Class Sire 59 8 29 8 60 8 X 8

StorrLeamrg Places Classes Class Stea 300 15 20 300 300

20 15 20 -

SuMolal Places 6140 414 3823 6266 4009 CSC 4604 6204 3364 5233 3408

Classes 273 421 287 411 218 4l< 24 444 271

Tout Places * •M3 ♦277 8247 8609 M38

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4

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Annex B - Page

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DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

Saturday, June 10,1995

Contents Page No.

Higher fines for unauthorised developments........................... 1

Review of training and employment for disabled....................... 2

Second driest May on record.......................................... 3

Arrangements for holiday clinic services............................. 6

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations................. 6

Sunday, June 11,1995

Contents Page No,

New North District Officer appointed................................... 7

Pregnant employees should not be sacked................................ 7

Booklet on corrosion resistant waterpipe materials published........... 8

S6 classes in government evening secondary schools..................... 9

Child care centres list updated........................................ 9

Chinese stamp album to be on sale..................................... 10

1

Higher fines for unauthorised developments ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ *

A resolution to increase the level of fines for unauthorised development under the Town Planning Ordinance will be moved into the Legislative Council on June 28, 1995.

The resolution proposes that any person who undertakes or continues an unauthorised development will be liable to a maximum fine of $500,000 on first conviction and to $1,000,000 on each of second and subsequent convictions.

At present, the maximum fine for undertaking or continuing an unauthorised development is $ 100,000.

The resolution also proposes that any person who fails to comply with the requirements specified in a notice served under the Ordinance will be liable to the same level of increased fine and, in addition, a daily fine for a continuing offence of $50,000 for first conviction, and $100,000 for each of second and subsequent convictions.

The present level of fine is $100,000 and daily fine is $10,000.

A Government spokesman said the Town Planning Ordinance was amended in 1991 to empower the Director of Planning to take enforcement action against unauthorised development within development permission areas in the New Territories. The intention was to contain the widespread environmental degradation of the countryside caused by haphazard development.

"The present level of fines under the Ordinance is too low to be a sufficient deterrent against unauthorised development. Profit generated from unauthorised development can be substantial, and in comparison, the fines appear to be minimal," the spokesman said.

So far, fines imposed under the Ordinance have been in the range of $5,000 to $199,000 with most fines in the lower end of the range.

Up to early March 1995, 105 defendants in 67 cases of unauthorised development have been convicted. Of these, only 26 cases have been discontinued after conviction.

2

The spokesman said the proposed maximum level of fine was worked out after taking into account the monthly turnover and profit margin of a typical container yard in the New Territories.

"The court can always impose a lower level of fine if the scale of any particular unauthorised development is of a modest nature and its adverse impact is not too severe," the spokesman added.

End/Saturday, June 10, 1995

Review of training and employment for disabled

*****

A working party under the chairmanship of the Director of Social Welfare has conducted a comprehensive review pf a whole range of training and employment facilities for the disabled. r

• • • V .

This was stated by the Director of Social Welfare, Mr Ian Strachan, when he officiated at the opening ceremony of the Home of Love Sheltered Workshop and Hostel of the Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong today (Saturday).

Noting that a report was expected to be available next month, Mr Strachan said one important means to achieve the basic aim of rehabilitation was to enhance independence through various modes of employment services for disabled perSons.

"Sheltered work is one of these services. Historically, sheltered workshops provide opportunities for disabled persons to take part in the assembly line of our manufacturing industry. ;;;j.

' <■ '! ’ • / . ....

’’But we now to move one step forward. To enhance the employment opportunities of disabled persons, we need to improve their training and employment prospects,’’ he said.

'■5 ' . •<

Mr Strachan said the authority basically wanted to see some of the more ’ capable sheltered workers move on to more independent work settings by engaging themselves in supported and open employment.

’’This will bring them a more dignified life, better integration with their ordinary counterparts in work and social situations.

3

"For anyone managing a sheltered workshop exciting times and new challenges lie ahead," he added.

The sheltered workshop and hostel opened today is the first of its kind ever run by the Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong.

End/Saturday, June 10, 1995

Second driest May on record ♦ ♦ * * *

May 1995 was the filth consecutive month this year with below average rainfall.

The monthly total rainfall of 20.8 millimetres recorded at the Royal Observatory is only 7 per cent of the normal amount, making last month the second driest May on record.

According to a Royal Observatory report released today (Saturday), the total rainfall of 183.7 millimetres accumulated since January 1 was 70 per cent below the normal of 616.5 millimetres for the same period and was also the second lowest record for the first five months.

Hot weather prevailed during the last few days of the month and a maximum temperature of 34.2 degrees was recorded on May 30, the fourth highest for the month of May.

Under the influence of a southerly airstream, it was fine and hot the first two days in May. A trough of low pressure developed over south China on May 3.

On its approach to the south China coast on May 4, the weather became unsettled over the territory with widespread rain and thunderstorms that afternoon. More than 40 millimetres of rainfall were recorded over the northeastern part of the New Territories that day but less than 20 millimetres in urban areas.

A fresh and relatively cool northeasterly airstream brought cloudy weather to Hong Kong on May 5. Temperatures dropped to the month's lowest of 20.8 degrees early that morning.

- 4 -

As winds moderated, the weather turned fine on May 6. It became cloudy with some rain patches the next three days.

Temperatures rose rapidly on May 10 as winds turned to the southeast and the weather cleared up.

A fresh easterly airflow reached the south China coast early on May 11 and the weather became cloudy with some rain patches on May 11 and 12.

More rain fell on May 13 where over 30 millimetres were recorded mainly over the northern part of the New Territories.

It was sunny on May 14 and the warm weather continued the next day.

A continental airstream reached the territory and brought cooler and cloudier weather on May 16 and 17. Cloudy conditions persisted but temperatures were on the rise in the next three days.

A trough of low pressure traversed the coast of Guangdong during the night of May 21. As it reached Hong Kong, it weakened rapidly. Although thundery showers brought more than 20 millimetres to Lantau Island, only traces of rainfall were recorded in other areas of Hong Kong.

The weather remained cloudy and slightly cooler with light rain patches on May 22 to 24.

Under the influence of a maritime airflow, it was fine and hot apart from some isolated showers from May 25 until the end of the month.

The month's highest temperature of 34.2 degrees was reached in a sunny and very hot afternoon of May 30.

No tropical cyclone activity was observed over the western North Pacific and the South China Sea in May.

Details of the issuance/hoisting and cancellation/lowering of various wamings/signals in the month are summarized in Table 1.1. Monthly meteorological figures and departures from normal of May are tabulated in Table 1.2.

J

- 5 -

Table 1.1 Warnings and signals in May 1995

Effective date and time

Warnings / Signals

Flood Warning 4 May 1620- 4 May 1720

Thunderstorm Warnings 4 May 1315- 4 May 1815 21 May 1830- 21 May 2130

Table 1.2 Figures and Departures from Normal - May 1995

Total Bright Sunshine

Mean Daily Global Solar Radiation

Total Rainfall

Mean Cloud Amount

Mean Relative Humidity

Mean Daily Maximum Temperature

Mean Air Temperature

Mean Daily Minimum Temperature

Mean Dew Point

Total Evaporation

156.4 hours ; 2.6 hours above normal

14.52 MJ/m2; 1.60 MJ/m2 below normal

20.8 mm ; 295.9 mm below normal

80 % ; 6 % above normal

82 % ; 1 % below normal

28.8 °C : 0.1 °C above normal

26.0 °C ; 0.1 °C above normal

24.1 °C ; 0.2 °C above normal

22.5 °C : 0.1 °C below normal

110.4 mm ; 27.3 mm below normal

Remarks: All measurements were made at the Royal Observatory except sunshine, solar radiation and evaporation which were recorded at King’s Park.

End/Saturday, June 10. 1995

- 6 -

Arrangements for holiday clinic services *****

The Department of Health announced today (Saturday) that there would be no holiday out-patient clinic service on June 17 (Saturday).

Eight general out-patient clinics will be open from 9 am to 1 pm on June 18 and June 19 (Sunday and Monday).

They are: Violet Peel Health Centre and Shau Kei Wan Jockey Club Clinic on Hong Kong Island; Kwun Tong Jockey Club Health Centre, Robert Black Health Centre and Yaumatei Jockey Club Clinic in Kowloon; and Lady Trench Polyclinic, Shek Wu Hui Jockey Club Clinic and Yuen Long Jockey Club Health Centre in the New Territories.

All other out-patient and evening clinics will be closed during the three days of holiday.

End/Saturday, June 10. 1995

I long Kong Monetary Authority money market operations *****

$ Million Time (limns) Cumulative Change ($ Million)

Opening Balance in the account 1.803 09:30 +525

Closing Balance in the account 883 10:00 +525

Change Attributable to: 11:00 +525

Money Market Activity +525 11:30 +525

LafToday -1.445 15:00

Laf Rate 4.25% Bid/6.25% Offer TW1 118.4 *-0.1* 10.6.95

End/Saturday, June 10, 1995

7

New North District Officer appointed *****

Mr Tommy Yuen Man-chung will assume the post of District Officer for North District tomorrow (Monday).

Mr Yuen, 31, joined the administrative service in 1985 and was promoted to Senior Administrative Officer in 1993.

He has served in the former Administrative Services and Information Branch, the Economic Services Branch, the former City and New Territories Administration, and the Housing Department.

His previous post was Assistant Secretary for the Economic Services Branch.

End/Sunday, June 11, 1995

Pregnant employees should not be sacked

*****

The Labour Department today (Sunday) warned employers not to dismiss any female employee who had given notice of her intention to take maternity leave.

Overseas Company Registration Agents Asia Limited at Harcourt Road, Central, was recently fined $7,500 at Western Magistracy for sacking a pregnant employee after she had submitted a notice of intention to take maternity leave to the company.

The notice, which stated her expected date of confinement and the date on which maternity leave was to begin, was submitted in accordance with the provisions of the Employment Ordinance.

"Under the Employment Ordinance, a female employee is protected from termination of her employment from the date on which she gives notice of her intention to take maternity leave until the date on which she is due to return to work, if she has been employed for not less than 12 weeks," Labour Officer (Prosecutions) Mrs Tonia Leung said.

A female employee who has worked for the same employer under a continuous contract for not less than 26 weeks is entitled to maternity leave.

8

She is also entitled to maternity leave pay if she has worked continuously for the same employer for not less than 40 weeks before the expected date of her commencement of maternity leave and if she has not more than two surviving children.

Mrs Leung said failure to comply with these provisions could incur a maximum fine of $10,000.

End/Sunday,June 11, 1995

Booklet on corrosion resistant waterpipe materials published *****

The Water Supplies Department has recently published a booklet providing general information on the use of different types of pipe materials as inside service in buildings, a spokesman for the department said today (Sunday).

Following announcement of amendments to the Waterworks Regulations on December 23, 1994, unlined galvanised steel pipes should not.be used as water inside service in new buildings one year after the enactment of the new legislation.

"The booklet supplies consumers with general information on the corrosion resistant type of pipe materials approved by the Water Authority under the new legislation.

"It outlines the advantages and disadvantages of different pipe materials and provides a list of suppliers and a price list for comparison.

• "However, consumers should still consult suppliers on the properties and characteristics of the pipe material they want to use," the spokesman said.

The booklet was prepared last year by a working party comprising representatives from associations in the plumbing trade.

Copies of the booklet, which arc available in both English and Chinese, can be obtained free of charge from the consumer enquiry centres of the Water Supplies Department.

End/Sunday. June 11, 1995

9

S6 classes in government evening secondary schools ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Education Department will operate sixth form classes in the Government Evening Secondary School Course in the 1995/96 school year for students aged over 15 to pursue post-secondary or tertiary education.

A spokesman for the Education Department said: "The newly introduced sixth form course will last for three years and only arts classes will be offered at the present stage."

The course fee for 1995/96 will be $1,290 per annum.

A total of four classes, one at each centre with different combinations of arts subjects, will be offered at the following centres:

Ho Tung Technical School for Girls Centre;

Queen Elizabeth School Centre;

* Tsuen Wan Government Secondary School Centre; and

Sha Tin Government Secondary School Centre.

Application forms will be obtainable at the Adult Education Section of the Education Department, Wu Chung House, 11th floor, Room 1106, 213 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai on August 10 and 11 and at the respective centres on August 11.

End/Sunday, June 11, 1995

Child care centres list updated ♦ * * * ♦

The Social Welfare Department (SWD) has recently revised a list of all registered child care centres to provide up-to-date information to members of the public enquiring about child care centre service.

The list, which is updated on an annual basis, is intended for the reference of various concerned government departments as well as non-governmental organisations, a spokesman for the SWD said today (Sunday).

The list indicates that as at April this year, there are 365 child care centres providing a total of 39,817 places throughout the territory.

The spokesman said under the provision of the Child Care Centres Ordinance, all child care centres looking after more than five children aged under six are required to be registered with the SWD.

10

"The registration system aims to ensure that the child care centres are maintained to a standard which provides adequate care for children’s physical, social, emotional and intellectual development.

"Members of the public wishing to check the exact location of any particular child care centre or whether the centre is a registered one may contact the department’s Child Care Centres Advisory Inspectorate (CCCAI) on telephone 2892 5510," the spokesman said.

Anyone who intends to operate a child care centre or wants to make any enquiry in respect of child care centres may call on the office of CCCAI on ninth floor, Wu Chung House, 213 Queen’s Road East, Wan Chai.

End/Sunday, June 11, 1995

Chinese stamp album to be on sale *****

The Postmaster General, Mr Mike Pagliari, announced today (Sunday) that the 1994 Annual Album, the Romance of the Three Kingdoms presentation pack and the Three Gorges of Yangtze River presentation pack, issued by the Chinese Post Office, will be placed on sale at the following seven philatelic offices as from June 14:

* Beaconsfield House Post Office

* General Post Office

* Granville Road Post Office

* Peak Post Office

* Sha Tin Central Post Office

* Tsim Sha Tsui Post Office

* Tsuen Wan Post Office

The selling prices are:

* prestige album - $200

* The Romance of the Three Kingdoms presentation pack - $12

* Three Gorges of Yangtze River presentation pack - $ 12

A restriction of a maximum of two items per product per customer queuing will be imposed on June 14.

End/Sunday, June 11, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 842 8777

Monday, June 12,1995

Contents Page No.

Metro Broadcast and Wharf Cable warned..................................... 1

Incident at border involving HK officers.................................   3

Tuen Mun Road bus-only lane modification................................... 3

Hong Kong's external trade statistics for April............................ 4

Volunteers on last military exercise...................................... 14

Water storage figure..............•••..................................... 14

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results............................... 15

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations...................... 15

1

Metro Broadcast and Wharf Cable warned * ♦ * * ♦

At its meeting held on June 8, the Broadcasting Authority (BA) received a progress report from the Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority on the mid- term review of the licence of Hong Kong Commercial Broadcasting Company Ltd (CRHK) and was generally pleased with the press coverage given to the results of the sound broadcasting survey.

A spokesman said BA was also happy with the attendance at the two public hearings: "The two public hearings held on May 9 and 18, 1995, were attended by more than 200 people with about 50 who stood up to speak and gave a point of view. A report on the public hearings will be published in due course."

BA is now studying the submissions from CRHK, the findings of the survey and the opinions collected at the public hearings. This information will be analysed and taken into account by BA in formulating its recommendations for submission to the Govemor-in-Council in September this year.

During the meeting, BA had considered a number of complaints and decided to issue a serious warning to Metro Broadcast (MB) for the blatant breach of the Radio Code of Practice on Programme Standards in its programme "Kwok Talk" broadcast on FM Select on April 22.

The programme featured drug-taking and the conversations of the programme hostess with callers were found to have conveyed the message that drug-taking was acceptable.

"This is against the Programme Code which stipulates that addiction to drugs or narcotics should not be encouraged or presented as desirable or socially acceptable," the spokesman said.

This was the first time Metro Broadcast breached the code in question. While a first-time breach usually attracts a lesser sanction (eg advice), BA considered a serious warning to be appropriate in the present case in order to underline its strong disapproval of any message which might mislead the audience into underestimating the extremely harmful effect of drug-taking.

"In addition, the top management of Metro Broadcast had been made fully aware of the seriousness of the matter and had undertaken to take remedial steps to prevent recurrence. The BA would consider imposing a financial penalty in the event of any recurrence," the spokesman said.

2

BA accepted the topic of "drug-taking" need not be prohibited for broadcasts but should be treated with great care and the programme hosts, in particular, should not let their personal experience prevail and give listeners the impression that it is harmless to try drugs.

The programme under complaint was broadcast on a Saturday at 7 pm to 9 pm and it was likely to have a large group of young people in its audience.

Elaborating on BA's decision, the spokesman said: "programme hosts should consider the impact which a particular view point might have on impressionable youths."

BA also decided to issue a serious warning to Wharf Cable (WC) for the broadcast of an advertisement on its Women Channel.

This was not the first occasion that WC contravened the licence condition prohibiting broadcast of any advertising material on its subscription television service. BA took a very serious view of the matter and cautioned the licensee that any further breach of the same nature would trigger the consideration of a financial penalty.

Asia Television Ltd (ATV) and Television Broadcasts Ltd (TVB) were each given a strong advice for breaching the Commercial Television Code of Practice on Programme Standards.

BA did not accept ATV's argument that plot development justified the inclusion of an excessively violent fighting sequences in the drama "Midnight Lovers" shown on Home during the family viewing hours on April 7. Nor it was satisfied with TVB's explanation that the repeated utterance of a vulgar expression in the feature film "Crying Game" shown on Pearl on March 24 had escaped the station's attention because of its close resemblance to another commonly used expression.

BA also issued a strong advice to Hong Kong Commercial Broadcasting Company Ltd for the inclusion of an unsubstantiated superlative claim in the advertisement for a medical preparation. The licensee was strongly advised to discontinue the broadcast of the advertisement.

End/Monday, June 12. 1995

3

Incident at border involving HK officers

*****

In response to media enquiries, a Government spokesman gave an account of an incident at the border today (Monday) involving an ambulance officer from the Fire Services Department (FSD) and a Police officer.

"The Fire Services Department received a 999 call at 11.36 am today to convey from Lok Ma Chau to hospital a Hong Kong resident who had become ill in China," he said.

"An emergency ambulance and an emergency motorbike were despatched to the border to transfer the patient to a Hong Kong hospital.

"On arrival, an FSD ambulance officer on the motorbike and a Police escort officer crossed over the border. While the patient was conveyed by ambulance to Hong Kong immediately without delay, the officers returned in the early afternoon before 3 pm."

The spokesman said the Police Liaison Officer at the border had clarified the issue with the Chinese authorities and the matter was satisfactorily resolved.

"The patient is now receiving treatment at Tuen Mun I lospital." he added.

End/Monday. June 12. 1995

Tuen Mun Road bus-only lane modification *****

The modification to the Tuen Mun Road bus-only lane trial scheme, involving the opening up of Sham Tseng Interchange to light vehicles and deletion of the bus lane east of the interchange, was implemented this morning (Monday).

Initial observations indicated that traffic joining Tuen Mun Road from Sham Tseng Interchange was reasonably smooth, with all the traffic signs and safety measures provided at the merging point.

About 400 vehicles per hour using the Sham Tseng Interchange approaching Tsuen Wan was recorded, compared with over 500 vehicles per hour before the interchange was closed.

4

Concerning bus services, the bus journey time was slightly longer. While this may be the result of the modification of the traffic management at Sham Tseng, however, there were a number of vehicle breakdown incidents this morning which also affected traffic flow.

Hence, it is too early to assess the impact of the scheme modification to bus operation at this stage.

More detailed surveys will be carried out in the coming two weeks when motorists are fully aware of the revised traffic arrangements.

The modification shall be experimented for no more than six weeks. The situation will be closely monitored by the Transport Department and an assessment of the modification shall be made after obtaining traffic data in the first three weeks.

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

Hong Kong's external trade statistics for April *****

The Census and Statistics Department today (Monday) released detailed statistics on external trade with breakdown by country/territory and commodity for April.

The value of re-exports continued to increase notably, by 13% over a year earlier to $84.6 billion in April.

Comparing April 1995 with April 1994. the value of re-exports to all of the main destinations showed increases of various magnitudes: Singapore (+24%). France (+21%). China (+17%). South Korea (+16%). Taiwan (+13%). Japan (+13%), the Netherlands (+11%). the United States (+8.5%). the United Kingdom (+5.3%) and Germany (+1.9%).

Changes in the value of Hong Kong's re-exports to ten main destinations are shown in Table 1.

The value of re-exports in the first four months of 1995 was $324.6 billion, 19% higher than that in the same period in 1994.

5

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, the value of re-exports to all main destinations showed increases of various magnitudes : Singapore (+29%), Japan (+26%), France (+22%), Taiwan (+21%), China (+21%), the Netherlands (+19%), the United States (+17%), South Korea (+17%), the United Kingdom (+7.1%) and Germany (+3.2%).

Table 2 shows changes in the value of re-exports of ten principal commodity divisions.

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, increases of various magnitudes were recorded in the value of re-exports of most principal commodity divisions. More notable increases were registered for electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (by $9.4 billion or 41%); telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment (by $8.9 billion or 32%); office machines and automatic data processing machines (by $6.5 billion or 62%); miscellaneous manufactured articles consisting mainly of baby carriages, toys, games and sporting goods (by $6.2 billion or 21%); textiles (by $6.2 billion or 27%); and photographic apparatus, equipment and supplies, optical goods, watches and clocks (by $2.7 billion or 23%).

Over the same period, re-exports of clothing fell by $904 million, or 3.4% over a year earlier.

The value of domestic exports in April this year, at $16.9 billion, increased slightly by 1.5% over a year earlier.

Comparing April 1995 with April 1994, increases were recorded in the value of domestic exports to Taiwan (+28%), Canada (+9.0%), the Philippines (+8.4%), Singapore (+5.2%), the Netherlands (+3.4%), Japan (+2.7%) and the United States (+0.8%).

However, the value of domestic exports to Germany, the United Kingdom and China decreased by 8.1%, 4.9% and 1.5% respectively.

Changes in the value of domestic exports to ten main destinations arc shown in Table 3.

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, the value of domestic exports to most main destinations showed increases of various magnitudes : Japan (+27%), Taiwan (+22%). the Philippines (+14%), the Netherlands (+12%). Singapore (+11%). Canada (+11%). the United States (+8.1%). China (+7.0%) and the United Kingdom (+3.8%).

6

However, the value of domestic exports to Germany decreased by 3.3%.

Taking all destinations together, the value of domestic exports in the first four months of 1995, at $67.5 billion increased markedly, by 9.9% over the same period in 1994.

Table 4 shows changes in the value of domestic exports of ten principal commodity divisions.

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, increases in the value of domestic exports were registered for electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (by $1.6 billion or 23%); clothing (by $1.6 billion or 9.3%); office machines and automatic data processing machines (by $1.3 billion or 26%); photographic apparatus, equipment and supplies, optical goods, watches and clocks (by $743 million or 17%); and plastics in primary forms (by $357 million or 31%).

Over the same period, decreases in the value of domestic exports were recorded for telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment (by $147 million or 4.2%); and machinery specialised for particular industries (by $136 million or 13%).

The value of imports continued to increase substantially, by 20% over a year earlier to $122.8 billion in April 1995.

Changes in the value of imports from ten main suppliers are shown in Table 5.

Comparing April 1995 with April 1994. the value of imports from all main suppliers showed increases of various magnitudes : France (+138%). Malaysia (+44%). the United States (+35%), Germany (+33%), Singapore (+30%). Taiwan (+23%). South Korea (+17%), Japan (+16%), China (+12%) and the United Kingdom (+8.9%).

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, the value of imports from all main suppliers showed increases of various magnitudes: France (+103%), Singapore (+49%). Malaysia (+43%). South Korea (+32%), the United States (+31%). Taiwan (+27%), Japan (+22%), Germany (+21%). China (+20%) and the United Kingdom (+16%).

The value of imports in the first four months of 1995. at $449.0 billion, increased markedly, by 25% over the same period in 1994.

7

Table 6 shows changes in the value of imports of ten principal commodity divisions.

Comparing the first four months of 1995 with the same period in 1994, increases were recorded in the value of imports of all principal commodity divisions. More notable increases were registered for electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (by $15.1 billion or 39%); telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment (by $9.6 billion or 28%); textiles (by $7.5 billion or 22%); office machines and automatic data processing machines (by $7.0 billion or 55%); miscellaneous manufactured articles consisting mainly of baby carriages, toys, games and sporting goods (by $4.8 billion or 20%); photographic apparatus, equipment and supplies, optical goods, watches and clocks (by $3.7 billion or 23%); and general industrial machinery and equipment, and machine parts (by $3.0 billion or 25%).

All the trade statistics described here arc measured at current prices and no account has been taken of changes in prices between the periods of comparison.

A separate analysis of the volume and price movements of external trade for April 1995 will be released in early July 1995.

Detailed trade statistics analysed by commodity and by country/ territory are published in trade statistics reports.

The April issue of the "Hong Kong External Trade” with detailed analyses on the performance of Hong Kong's external trade in April will be available for sale at $122 per copy around June 22.

The report can be purchased at cither (i) the Government Publications Centre, ground floor. Low Block, Queensway Government Offices, 66 Queensway, Hong Kong, or (ii) the Publications Section of the Census and Statistics Department, 19th Floor. Wanchai Tower. 12 Harbour Road. Wan Chai. Hong Kong.

Enquiries regarding regular subscription to this report may be directed to the Publications (Sales) Office, 28th Floor. Siu On Centre, 188 Lockhart Road. Wan Chai. Hong Kong (Tel 2598 8194) and enquiries on trade statistics to the Census and Statistics Department (Tel 2582 4915).

8

TABLE 1 : RE-EXPORTS TO TEN MAIN DESTINATIONS

DESTINATION APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) APR 95 OVER APR 94 (% CHANGE) JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

CHINA 31,214 + 17.4 115,786 + 20.6

UNITED STATES 17,158 + 8.5 64,456 + 17.5

JAPAN 5,097 + 12.8 19,792 + 26.3

GERMANY 3,160 + 1.9 13,155 + 3.2

TAIWAN . 2,118 + 12.9 8,374 + 21.3

UNITED KINGDOM 2,118 + 5.3 8,370 + 7.1

SINGAPORE 1,858 + 23.7 7,460 + 28.6

SOUTH KOREA 1,587 + 15.7 6,041 + 16.6

FRANCE 1,365 + 21.4 4,977 + 21.7

NETHERLANDS 1,241 + 11.5 4,962 + 18.8

9

TABLE 2 : RE-EXPORTS OF TEN PRINCIPAL COMMODITY DIVISIONS

COMMODITY DIVISION APR 1995 (HKD Ma.) APR 95 OVER APR 94 (% CHANGE) JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Ma.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

MISCELLANEOUS MANUFACTURED ARTICLES (MAINLY BABY CARRIAGES, TOYS, GAMES AND SPORTING GOODS) 9,838 + 10.2 36,319 + 20.6

TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND SOUND RECORDING AND REPRODUCING APPARATUS AND EQUIPMENT 8,303 + 7.0 36,119 + 32.5

ELECTRICAL MACHINERY, APPARATUS AND APPLIANCES, AND ELECTRICAL PARTS THEREOF 7,832 + 29.3 32,425 + 41.1

TEXTILE YARN, FABRICS, MADE-UP ARTICLES AND RELATED PRODUCTS 8,065 + 12.8 29,123 + 27.1

ARTICLES OF APPAREL AND CLOTHING ACCESSORIES 6,224 - 2.8 25,649 - 3.4

FOOTWEAR 4,436 + 8.7 18,643 + 14.4

OFFICE MACHINES AND AUTOMATIC DATA PROCESSING MACHINES 5,279 + 91.6 16,888 + 61.9

PHOTOGRAPHIC APPARATUS, EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES, OPTICAL GOODS, WATCHES AND CLOCKS 3,941 + 15.6 14,677 + 23.0

TRAVEL GOODS, HANDBAGS AND SIMILAR CONTAINERS 3,012 + 17.2 10,585 + 18.0

GENERAL INDUSTRIAL MACHINERY AND EQUIPMENT, AND MACHINE PARTS 2,666 + 5.7 9,518 + 18.1

10

TABLE 3 : DOMESTIC EXPORTS TO TEN MAIN DESTINATIONS

DESTINATION APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) APR 95 kOVER ®>R 94 JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

(% 1 CHANGE)

CHINA 5,147 - 1.5 18,846 • + 7.0

UNITED STATES 4,188 + 0.8 16,406 + 8.1

SINGAPORE 958 + 5.2 4,077 + 11.2

JAPAN 835 + 2.7 3,903 + 26.8

GERMANY 729 - 8.1 3,317 - 3.3

UNITED KINGDOM 650 - 4.9 2,879 + 3.8

TAIWAN 649 + 28.3 2,291 + 21.6

NETHERLANDS 300 + 3.4 1,457 + 11.6

CANADA 266 + 9.0 1,217 + 11.0

PHILIPPINES 257 + 8.4 1,030 + 14.3

11

TABLE 4 : DOMESTIC EXPORTS OF TEN PRINCIPAL COMMODITY DIVISIONS

COMMODITY DIVISION' APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) APR 95 OVER APR 94 (% CHANGE) JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

ARTICLES OF APPAREL AND CLOTHING ACCESSORIES 4,483 + 7.5 18,615 + 9.3

ELECTRICAL MACHINERY, APPARATUS AND APPLIANCES, AND ELECTRICAL PARTS THEREOF 2,335 + 13.9 8,945 + 22.5

OFFICE MACHINES AND AUTOMATIC DATA PROCESSING MACHINES ’ 1,449 + 4.2 6,443 + 26.1

MISCELLANEOUS MANUFACTURED ARTICLES (MAINLY JEWELLERY, GOLDSMITHS' AND SILVERSMITHS' WARES) 1,521 - 7.4 5,969 + 1.6

PHOTOGRAPHIC APPARATUS, EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES, OPTICAL GOODS, WATCHES AND CLOCKS 1,343 + 11.0 5,209 + 16.6

TEXTILE YARN, FABRICS, MADE-UP ARTICLES AND-RELATED PRODUCTS 1,206 - 9.8 4,376 - 2.7

TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND SOUND • RECORDING AND REPRODUCING APPARATUS AND EQUIPMENT 742 - 27.5 3,359 - 4.2

PLASTICS IN PRIMARY FORMS 402 + 24.5 1,494 + 31.5

MANUFACTURES OF METALS 320 - 18.3 1,378 - 2.5

MACHINERY SPECIALIZED FOR PARTICULAR INDUSTRIES 283 + 4.0 898 - 13.2

12

TABLE 5 : IMPORTS FROM TEN MAIN SUPPLIERS

SUPPLIER APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) APR 95 OVER APR 94 (% CHANGE) JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

CHINA 41/222 + 12.1 156,572 + 20.3

JAPAN 19/886 + 15.9 71,188 + 21.8

TAIWAN 10/787 + 23.0 39,084 + 27.0

UNITED STATES 9/088 + 34.6 33,036 + 31.2

SINGAPORE 6,485 + 29.7 24,115 + 48.9

SOUTH KOREA 6,224 + 17.5 22,846 + 32.2

FRANCE 4,043 +137.9 10,473 +102.8

GERMANY 2,748 + 33.2 10,056 + 21.2

UNITED KINGDOM 2/225 + 8.9 8,722 + 15.9

MALAYSIA 2,526 + 43.7 8,575 + 42.7

13

TABLE 6 : IMPORTS OF TEN PRINCIPAL COMMODITY DIVISIONS Li

COMMODITY DIVISION APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) APR 95 OVER APR 94 (% CHANGE) JAN-APR 1995 (HKD Mn.) JAN-APR 95 OVER JAN-APR 94 (% CHANGE)

ELECTRICAL MACHINERY, APPARATUS AND APPLIANCES, AND ELECTRICAL PARTS THEREOF 14,081 + 34.4 53,564 + 39.3

TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND SOUND RECORDING AND REPRODUCING APPARATUS AND EQUIPMENT 10,629 + 7.6 43,964 * 28.0

TEXTILE YARN, FABRICS, MADE-UP ARTICLES AND RELATED PRODUCTS 11,902 + 5.2 42,261 + 21.5

MISCELLANEOUS MANUFACTURED ARTICLES (MAINLY BABY CARRIAGES, TOYS, GAMES AND SPORTING GOODS) 7,871 + 14.8 28,437 + 20.4

ARTICLES OF APPAREL AND CLOTHING ACCESSORIES 7,261 + 2.0 27,537 + 2.6

OFFICE MACHINES AND AUTOMATIC DATA

PROCESSING MACHINES 6,236 + 68.9 19,817 + 54.5

PHOTOGRAPHIC APPARATUS, EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLIES, OPTICAL GOODS, WATCHES AND CLOCKS 5,199 + 22.2 19,683 + 23.0

FOOTWEAR 4,128 + 11.1 16,661 + 15.0

ROAD VEHICLES 4,599 + 12.0 15,764 + 6.5

GENERAL INDUSTRIAL MACHINERY AND

EQUIPMENT, AND MACHINE PARTS 4,531 + 15.9 14,917 + 24.8

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

- 14 -

Volunteers on last military exercise *****

The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers) conducted its last military exercise in the New Territories over the past three days (June 9, 10 and 11).

' r. ■ & •

More than 600 soldiers participated in this annual exercise.

The main areas of activities were in Tai Lam Chung, Shing Mun, Sek Kong, Lam Chuen and Cloudy Hill.

The exercise scenario was that groups of religious extremists had infiltrated the above areas and were trying to establish bases there.

The Volunteers were called out to destroy these fanatics.

The activity in each of the above locations were limited to small areas. Blank ammunition and pyrotechnics were also used.

The Royal Hong Kong Regiment will become non-operational on July 1 and disband on September 3 this year.

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

Water storage figure ♦ * * ♦ ♦ 'fC!

Storage in Hong Kong's reservoirs at 9 am today (Monday) stood at 63.8 per cent of capacity or 373.648 million cubic metres.

This time last year the reservoirs contained 379.729 million cubic metres of water, representing 64.8 per cent of capacity.

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

15

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ *

Tender date

Paper on offer

Issue number

Amount applied

Amount allotted

Average price (yield) accepted Lowest price (yield) accepted Pro rata ratio

Average tender price(yield)

12 Jun 95

EF notes

5006

HK$2,030 MN

HKS500 MN

99.03 (6.95 PCT)

99.01 (6.95 PCT)

About 30 PCT

98.88 (6.99 PCT)

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations * ♦ ♦ * ♦

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change (^million)

Opening balance in the account 883 0930 +1,651

Closing balance in the account 770 1000 +1,631

Change attributable to : 1100 +1,631

Money market activity +1,632 1200 +1,632

LAF today -1,745 1500 +1,632

1600 +1,632

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.4 *+0.0* 12.6.95

16

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.55 2 years 2705 6.40 100.71 6.09

1 month 5.60 3 years 3804 6.90 101.72 6.33

3 months 5.63 5 years 5003 7.75 103.85 6.90

6 months 5.67 5 years M501 7.90 102.23 7.49

12 months 5.80 • • 4

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $ 10,810 million

Closed June 12,1995

End/Monday, June 12, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Wednesday, June 14,1995

Contents Page No.

Transcript of the Governor's media session.................................. 1

Governor visits Eastern District............................................ 4

New TV API on shark warnings................................................ 5

Food Hygiene Campaign launched.............................................. 6

Helicopter incident to be investigated...................................... 8

VMs depart on orderly repatriation flight................................... 8

Monitors' report submitted to CS............................................ 9

New District Officer for Sha Tin............................................ 9

HK delegation to set out for World Special Olympics........................ 10

Three NT lots to let....................................................... 11

Bilingual Monthly Statistical Bulletin................................ 11

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations....................... 12

1

Transcript of the Governor's media session *****

The following is a transcript of the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten's media session after visiting Eastern District today (Wednesday):

Question: Mr Patten, what is the Hong Kong Government going to do with Macau authorities to increase the security measures on ferries following yesterday's hijack incident?

Governor: I think we are all extremely concerned about what happened yesterday. It was a very worrying crime and we’ve put our crack police squad, the Organised Crime and Triad Squad in charge of dealing with it. We've accepted responsibility for coordinating the operation and we are working very closely with the authorities in China and in Macau in seeking the criminals who carried out this act. I think it is fair to say that we've had very good co-operation on this and on other matters with the Chinese and Macau authorities as far as the law and order situation is concerned and I am sure that will continue in this case. Clearly we've got to look at issues like security on the vessels. We've got to try to make sure that nothing like this happens again. It was worrying and we are doing everything we can to deal with it. 1 - -<•

9 • 11 • / , f — . • • . ' y • • n v

• *i •. ' e, i • x- ■. s

Question: If once suspects are arrested, which court will they be taken to, the Zhuhai court or the Hong Kong court?

Governor: I think that is a matter which we’ll have to consider at the time but I think that it's agreed that we would have the jurisdiction or responsibility. I believe that is the case but I don't want to deal with the matter which is probably the responsibility of the Attorney General.

Question: Some of Legco members .^on the Court of Final Appeal Bill, what do you feel about this response?

Governor: I think that you know my view. I think the agreement that we reached last week with China was a good one. I think it was profoundly in the interests of the people of Hong Kong. And, the sooner we can pass the Bill in the Legislative Council the better. But obviously it's for Legislative Councillors to consider the position, to consider their responsibilities and their own view of what's in Hong Kong’s best interest and then in due course they will have to explain the decisions they come to the community. My hunches of the community is understanding and supportive of the agreement that we've reached. The only poll that has been done so far suggested that support was getting on for three to one in favour of the agreement and I hope that will continue through the summer. I think there was a sigh of relief in the community when this agreement was reached. But obviously there are other problems that we've now got to tackle. m ; .

2

Question: An ATV poll said that the majority of people did not understand or what would like in the agreement....the one carried out very recently.

1'1 i ' Governor: I haven't seen that poll....

Question: What is your reaction to the fact that the majority of people did not like or understand the Bill?

Governor: I want to see the poll and study it before I react to it.

* 9

Question: Do you think the Chinese side can set up their own ...Without passing the Bill in Legco, do you think the Chinese side can set up their own Court of Final Appeal?

Governor: If there isn't a bill passed in the Legislative Council and we don't secure acceptance for the bill we put forward, then there is inevitably going to be a rupture in Hong Kong's arrangements because we won't be able to move ahead in the smooth way which we were hoping for and there is bound to be some sort of gap in 1997 before a court can be set up. But I hope that won't happen.

Question: Shall we talk about, changing topic now to special education. There is obviously a motion before Legco today accusing the government of not doing enough. What is your reaction to that? Is the government doing enough?

Governor: Yes. We're doing more but I can understand that particularly parents with children with difficulties will always want the government to do more. So it is not an issue on which one can ever be complacent. I've been particularly concerned as you know to ensure that we meet the targets that we set for ourselves in relation to all the handicapped including handicapped children and mentally handicapped children in 1992, when we brought forward the Green Paper on Rehabilitation targets which have previously been for 10 years to 5 years, so we can provide the day care places and the hostel places that are required by 1997. We're now back on course in delivering on those targets and that of course has implications for the educational service and the provision of places for those with particular difficulties in our schools as well. One of the problems that we face which I saw this afternoon is that it's not always just a question of places. It's also a question of providing the services that are required in schools, for example, the occupational therapy and the physiotherapy as well. That's something we need to address in addition to the basic question of places.

Question: Do you agree that with the improved Sino-British relation, the adaptation of law could be solved afterward?

3

Governor: I very much hope that the CFA agreement will break the logjam and make it easier to reach agreements on other issues. But I don't think that will automatically happen and I also believe that it should give us some new ways of dealing with the adaptation of laws issue. We're getting on with the work of drafting, but there are Chinese concerns about what I think lawyers call the modality, the way in which the trigger mechanism which you actually use for the adaptation of laws. But I hope we can cope with that.

Question: So you hope the CFA agreement can help the implementation of the midnight legislation?

Governor: I very much hope that the agreement on the CFA will help to secure sensible ways of dealing with the adaptation of laws. We've been doing well on the localisation of laws. The programme on that front has been going ahead pretty successfully. On adaptation, the slowness hasn't been for work that we've been doing on the laws themselves. The difficulty has been, as you suggested, that trigger mechanism at mid-night on the June 30/July 1, 1997 and I hope that perhaps the approach that we’ve put forward in clause 1 of the bill might be a way in which we can unlock that problem.

Question: On the compulsory provident fund, since the Chinese side still keep silent on that, do you think that you can make the implementation of that scheme which is intended by the Hong Kong government, will be implemented in...

Governor: I hope that we'll be able to see reasonably swift passage of the legislation. It's enabling legislation. There's still a great deal of detailed work to be done on the scheme. Obviously, Chinese officials would quite properly want to be consulted about the details of the legislation. But unless we get the enabling legislation in place, we'll waste a couple of years before we can set up any sort of scheme. My view is that the people of Hong Kong want us to get on with things.

Question: But you hope that it will not be implemented in such a rush way?

Governor: I think that the people of Hong Kong have been observing government discussing this issue for two decades or longer. 1 don't think they actually regard trying to reach some conclusions at the end of that period as an undue rush.

Question: Governor, do you have any response to the recent American policy about the Vietnam boat people?

4

Governor: It's not the American administration's policy. It's a proposal which has been made in Congress. I think it's extremely unhelpful. And it's very unfair to the people in the camps because it raises their expectation in a way which can't and won't be fulfilled. So I very much hope that the situation is clarified rapidly and that those in the camps will recognise that their future lies in Vietnam where the economy does better and better rather than in Hong Kong, in camps which have cost the people of this territory about six billion HK dollars over the last years. So I think the sooner we can get on and complete the return of Vietnamese migrants within all the regulations set out and agreed with the UNHCR and all the agreements and arrangements which have been tested in the courts, the sooner we can do that and complete that, the better.

Question: You have promised that you'd .... the government promised to release a full statement after the bill of the CFA. But we have now also not known what happened between May 24 and the time of the agreement. In these two weeks, what happened that made you changed....Would you promise to give us a full detail about that ?

Governor: What happened between those two dates was that we had some hard negotiations and reached an agreement and the terms of that agreement have been made absolutely plain.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Governor visits Eastern District ♦ * ♦ ♦ ♦

The Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, toured Eastern District this (Wednesday) afternoon to familiarise himself with the latest developments in the district.

Mr Patten first visited the residents at the Mr and Mrs Lawrence Wong Lutheran Home for the Elderly in Siu Sai Wan.

This was followed by a call at the Caritas Lok Yi School for the Mentally Handicapped in Lei King Wan where he was briefed on the training and other services being provided for the mentally handicapped children.

The Governor then proceeded to Marble Road in North Point to have a look at the fixed-pitch stalls and shops selling wet and dry goods in the market area.

5

He met district board members and local community leaders at a reception in a restaurant before concluding his visit.

The Governor was accompanied by the acting Director of Home Affairs, Mr Philip Chok; the acting Eastern District Officer, Miss Shirley Yuen; and the Eastern District Board Chairman, Mr Chan Bing-woon.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

New TV API on shark warnings ♦ ♦ * * ♦

Warnings to swimmers to stay out of the sea in the Sai Kung area have been in force since June 2. They are being further reinforced today (Wednesday) with the screening of a new film clip on the shark attacks on television, starting this evening.

The film clip, to be screened on both the English and Chinese channels of ATV and TVB, depicts a shark warning flag with the superimpose ”Do not swim when shark warnings are in force”.

Through the voiceover, members of the public arc advised not to enter the water when the shark warning flat is hoisted. They should avoid swimming alone in the sea at dawn, dusk, at night or in murky water. In addition, they should not swim if they have any open wound or if they are bleeding.

Most important of all, they should follow the advice disseminated by the Government through the media and the instructions of life guards and policemen at the beach.

The Government has already produced a radio announcement of public interest (API) to warn the public against the danger of sharks. This has been in use since last Friday.

The TV and radio APIs will be broadcast throughout the swimming season.

A spokesman for the Recreation and Culture Branch today reaffirmed that the Government was very concerned about the recent shark attacks and would do all it could to promote public safety and help increase public awareness of sharks.

"The public must also take personal responsibility for their own safety, by heeding the advice they are given and exercising due caution, thus avoiding placing either themselves or rescue workers at risk," he said.

6

"All sightings and incidents this year have occurred in the Sai Kung area and so that is the focus of our attention. But due caution should still be exercised elsewhere when swimming in the sea.

"Vigilance is already high and has been further increased by additional air, sea and land patrols.

"We are, of course, seeking appropriate longer term measures to mitigate the problem for the future. This involves careful analysis of data and consultation with experts both locally and overseas," the spokesman added.

In the meantime, he called on the public to make full use of the 27 public swimming pool complexes managed by the two municipal councils throughout the territory.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Food Hygiene Campaign launched *****

The Department of Health and the Urban and Regional councils today (Wednesday) launched a territory-wide campaign on food hygiene for people in the food business.

Under the campaign entitled "Practise Food Hygiene to Prevent Food Borne Diseases", a total of 24 seminars has been organised for all licensees and staff of licensed food premises, cooked food stalls, canteens and other food catering establishments.

Speaking at the opening ceremony. Chairman of the Urban Council Public Health Select Committee, Mr Joseph Chan Yuek-sut, urged people in the food trade to practise the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point food safety concept to prevent food borne diseases.

Mr Chan said: "Last year there were 251 cases of food poisoning in which 973 persons were involved. Besides, for food borne diseases, there were 546 cases of Hepatitis A, 341 cases of dysentery and 56 cases of cholera.

"Most of the cases were induced by the intake of contaminated and improperly treated food. However, I believe that these food borne diseases can be avoided and prevented."

7

Also speaking at the ceremony, Chairman of the Regional Council Environmental Hygiene Select Committee, Mr Ting Yin-wah, pointed out that Hong Kong people were intelligent consumers who cared much about the safety and hygiene of food.

Mr Ting said the adoption of hygienic methods to prepare food was the most effective means for the catering trade to gain confidence from the consumers.

Mr Ting called on seminar participants to take the knowledge they gained back to their workplace and practise food hygiene to prevent food borne diseases.

Apart from the 24 seminars, two further separate seminars has also been organised in collaboration with the Education Department for primary and secondary school teachers.

Through the "training of trainer" method, teachers attending the seminars could later convey health messages to their students.

Each food hygiene seminar consists of a talk by a Chief Health Inspector, a film show and a discussion session on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point concept and its implementation.

In addition, a 24-hour hotline - 2723 0013 - will provide taped messages on food safety during the campaign period which will last until the end of August.

Callers can leave their questions and telephone numbers with the hotline and staff of the Health Education Unit will call them back.

Furthermore, mobile broadcasting teams of the Unit will be deployed to disseminate food hygiene messages throughout the territory.

Printed educational materials such as leaflets and posters can be obtained free from the district offices and the environmental hygiene offices of the Urban Services and Regional Services departments.

End/Wednesday, June 14. 1995

8

Helicopter incident to be investigated

*****

The Director of Civil Aviation, who is also the Chief Inspector of Accidents, has announced that an investigation has been launched to look into the cause of the helicopter accident which occurred on June 9 near Yuen Long and is calling for representations from interested persons who should contact the Civil Aviation Department.

Shortly before noon on June 9, an Aerospatiale SA315B Lama helicopter with registration VR-HJH operated by Heliservices (Hong Kong) Limited, was reported to have been involved in an accident near Yuen Long.

The department will put a notice in the local newspapers tomorrow (Thursday) to call for representations on the cause of the mishap.

Any persons interested in making representation as to the circumstances or cause of the incident should write to the Chief Inspector of Accidents c/o The Civil Aviation Department, 46th Floor, Queensway Government Offices, 66 Queensway within 14 days of the notice.

Alternatively, they may telephone the department's Investigation Team on 2769 8896 within the stipulated period.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

VMs depart on orderly repatriation flight

*****

A group of 100 Vietnamese migrants (VMs) returned to Vietnam today (Wednesday) on the 23rd flight under the Orderly Repatriation Programme (ORP).

The returnees, comprising 40 men, 25 women. 14 boys and 21 girls, were mainly from High Island Detention Centre. The oldest is 61 years old and the youngest, six months.

Most of them arrived in Hong Kong in 1989, with a small number in 1988, 1993 and 1994.

The group brought to 1,371 the total number repatriated on ORP flights since November 1991.

9 .

The returnees were transported to the airport early this morning for predeparture security checks before boarding their flight for Hanoi.

The Refugee Co-ordinator, Mr Brian Bresnihan, stressed that the Government was determined to repatriate all screened-out VMs to Vietnam.

"There is no future for them in Hong Kong and the best option for them is to volunteer to go back to Vietnam," he said.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Monitors’ report submitted to CS *****

The monitors appointed to observe the Orderly Repatriation Programme operation this (Wednesday) morning have submitted their report to the Chief Secretary.

Mrs Chan Chan Lai-ling, a Justice of the Peace, and Ms Linda Hitchcox, from Oxfam, observed the transfer of 100 Vietnamese migrants to the airport this morning.

The monitors described the operation as being carried out smoothly without major incident.

End/Wednesday. June 14. 1995

.k . r.

New District Officer for Sha Tin *****

Miss Wong Mei-lin will take over as the new Sha Tin District Officer of Sha Tin District Office tomorrow (Thursday).

Aged 44, Miss Wong joined the administrative service in 1979. She was made Administration Officer Staff Grade C in 1990.

10

She has served in the former Administrative Services and Information Branch, Education and Manpower Branch, Civil Service Branch, Transport Branch, the former City and New Territories Administration, Housing Department, Regional Services Department and Urban Services Department.

Her last post was Assistant Director in the Industry Department.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

HK delegation to set out for World Special Olympics ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Mrs Patten today (Wednesday) officiated at a flag presentation ceremony to mark the departure of the Hong Kong Special Olympic delegation for the 1995 World Special Olympics Summer Games to be held in the United States next month.

She said Hong Kong had participated in every Summer Special Olympics since 1979.

"Our athletes did remarkably well in the last one in 1991, bringing home 34 gold, 18 silver and 11 bronze medals.

"This was largely due to the determination and talent of the athletes."

The Hong Kong Sports Association for the Mentally Handicapped offer over 140 competitions and training programmes a year for more than 25,000 mentally disabled people.

Mrs Patten said Hong Kong would be represented by a contingent of 35 athletes and 15 coaches and staff in this year's event.

They will take part in no less than 80 events.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

11

Three NT lots to let

* * * * *

The Lands Department is inviting tenders for the short-term tenancies of three pieces of Government land in the New Territories.

To be used as fee-paying public car parks, the lots are located in Area 9 in Tai Po (9,900 square metres in area), area 4B, San Wan Road, Shcung Shui, (11,790 square metres) and Sai Kung Tuk, Sai Kung (2,830 square metres).

The tenancies of the five and second lots will be for one year, and that for the third lot for two years, all renewable quarterly.

Closing date for submission of tenders are at noon on June 30.

Tender forms, tender notice and conditions may be obtained from the District Lands Offices, Tai Po, Sai Kung, and North, the District Lands Offices, Kowloon, 10th floor, Yau Ma Tei Car Park Building, 250 Shanghai Street, Kowloon, and the Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road.

Tender Plans can also be inspected at these offices.

End/Wcdnesday. June 14. 1995

Bilingual Monthly Statistical Bulletin

* * * * *

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority today (Wednesday) launches the bilingual edition of the Monthly Statistical Bulletin.

The latest issue of the Bulletin provides in both Chinese and English a glossary and explanation of economic terms and concepts used in financial and banking sectors. The headings of tables and the footnotes in the Bulletin arc also available in both languages.

The English edition of the Bulletin, which provides comprehensive statistical tables on Hong Kong’s monetary and banking activities, was launched in September last year. The bilingual edition was-created to widen readership and establish a unified standard in the use of Chinese terms.

End/Wednesday. June 14. 1995

12

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

*****

$ million Time (hours.) Cumulative change (Smillion)

Opening balance in the account 1,916 0930 +580

Closing balance in the account 2,057 1000 +580

Change attributable to : 1100 +588

Money market activity +589 1200 +589

LAF today -448 1500 +589

1600 +589

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 *+0.2* 14.6.95

Flong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.17 2 years 2705 6.40 101.24 5.79

1 month 5.35 3 years 3804 6.90 102.44 6.05

3 months 5.42 5 years 5006 6.60 100.05 6.70

6 months 5.48 5 years M501 7.90 103.21 7.24

12 months 5.59

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $24,788 million

Closed June 14, 1995

End/Wcdnesday, June 14, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL.: 2842 8777

SUPPLEMENT

Wednesday, June 14,1995

Contents Page No.

Legislative Council meeting: Motion debate on special education.................................... 1

Motion debate on economic strategy................................... 5

HK people's interests best served by CFA Bill: AG................ 11

Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill................................ 14

Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Bill............................ 21

Road Traffic Ordinance.............................................. 24

Revision of the Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance............ 25

Revision of Foreign Marriage Ordinance.............................. 26

Revision of Legitimacy Ordinance.................................... 27

Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995: second reading..................... 27

Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995: committee stage.................... 29

/Amend clauses......

Contents

Page No.

Amend clauses of Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill................. 30

Amend schedule of Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill................ 31

Nuclear Material Bill: committee stage.............................. 32

>

Intimidating witnesses liable to be prosecuted: AG.................. 33

"Forgetful” witnesses.................................................... 34

Sit-in protest outside NCNA.............................................. 38

Successful applicants under British Nationality Selection................ 39

Duty of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong............................. 40

New franchise for CMB.................................................... 41

On-the-Job Training Scheme..............................................   43

Increase of water bills due to sewage charge........................ 44

Redevelopment of Kwun Tong bus depot................................ 46

Security services in public housing estates......................... 47

Foreign exchange investors protection.................................... 48

Prisoners’wages.......................................................... 51

Land use in industrial estates......;............................... 52

District officers’ attendance at functions............................... 54

Stench emission from Tin Shui Wai stormwater sewer.................. 55

Length of time for retrained workers to find jobs................... 56

Fund-raising activities by hospitals................................ 57

Foreign domestic helpers as drivers................................. 59

Works in Land Development Corporation sites continue................ 60

Remedies for unemployment problem................................... 61

Equal status of Chinese and English under language law.............. 63

/District officers’.....

Motion debate on special education *****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the motion debate on special education in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

1 am grateful to Members who have spoken this evening about special education services. Let me reassure Members that Government is just as concerned as Members that special education services should continue to develop and improve. This commitment is clearly re-affirmed in the White Paper on Rehabilitation tabled at the Legislative Council on 7 June 1995. But first of all, I would like to spend a few minutes on the premise of this debate, which provides the broad parameters within which Members have put forward their views and suggestions. The premise is that the Government has paid insufficient attention to special education services for more than thirty years. Is this true? What are the facts? A brief review will be helpful.

In the sixties, special education services comprised no more than two special schools, one each for the mentally and physically handicapped and a handful of special classes in primary schools for slow-lcaming children - special education was at its infancy.

During the seventies, special education services began to develop. By 1976, the number of special schools grew to 35, that of special and resource classes to 287 and these catered not only slow-learning children but also children with other disabilities such as maladjustment. The first Special Education Services Centre under the Education Department was established in Kowloon to provide assessments, diagnosis and intervention programmes for children with special education needs.

The publication of the White Paper "Integrating the Disabled into the Community : A United Effort" in 1977 set out for the first time Government’s comprehensive objectives in services for the disabled.

In line with other service areas, this White Paper announced an ambitious programme of expansion in the next decade of special education services - a rapid increase in special school places and a much enhanced standard of provision of support services in special and resource classes in ordinary schools.

2

The policy enshrined in the 1977 White Paper that as many disabled children as possible should be enabled with appropriate support services to receive education in ordinary schools has been a cardinal principle guiding the development of special education services.

In accordance with the ambitious targets set in the White Paper, the number of special schools was increased by mid 1980s to 61 offering a total of 8,092 places. Special and resource classes expanded in parallel - there were 426 such class giving a total of 9,265 places. To improve the quality of special education, the teacher to classes ratio was increased from 1.3 for primary or 1.4 for secondary to 1.5 for both. The reduction of class size which had already started in the seventies was extended to other categories of disability including the maladjusted. Other provisions in the Code of Aid for Special Schools were revised to include enhanced provisions of paramedical and ancillary staff such as physiotherapists, social workers etc. As an integral part of development, teacher training in the education of children with special education needs was improved.

Two other important developments also took place around the same time. The first related to the introduction of a combined screening programme for children at Primary one level to facilitate the early identification of hearing, vision, speech or learning problems so that children identified could receive early remedial services. This service has since become an exceptionally useful tool in planning our special educational services.

The second related to the introduction of an Intensive Remedial Support Service for children being educated in special or resource classes in ordinary schools. This service was subsequently developed to include peripatetic service, school-based remedial service and non-school-based support services at resource centres. This comprehensive range of remedial and support services enabled more and more handicapped children, in particular, those who were visually or hearing-impaired, physically or mildly mentally handicapped children to receive school education alongside their peers, thereby laying the ground for further development in integration.

Developments in the late 80's and early 90’s was characterised by further improvements in teacher education, a new approach in meeting the special needs of junior secondary students through curriculum restructuring and extending the concept of special education to gifted children.

3

To raise the quality of teacher education, the part-time in-service course of training in special education was upgraded to a one-year full-time course in 1993. In the same year, following the recommendations of the Education Commission, Government decided that a programme of new practical schools and skill opportunities schools with emphasis on practical subjects or vocational skills should be established in the mainstream education to cater for junior secondary students who are unmotivated by the normal school curriculum or who experience learning difficulties. As Members may recall, a sum of $340 million was subsequently earmarked for the construction of three new practical schools and seven skill opportunities schools in the next four years. Similarly, efforts were re-inforced to assist low achievers in our secondary schools through the provision of school-based curriculum, specially tailored to the needs of these students and the provision of extra graduate teachers. As Members know, the scheme has proved so successful that it is being extended to 70 schools in September 1995.

In striving to assist students at the lower end of the ability spectrum, it is important that we do not overlook the special needs of those at the upper end of that ability spectrum. In 1994, a pilot project started in our primary schools where academically gifted children were identified and given special assistance in terms of curriculum and learning materials. A special training programme for teachers of these children was also started. A site for a new resource centre to help both teachers and children alike was identified. Construction work started in late 1994 and has just been completed. The Centre will be opened for use shortly.

Given these encouraging integrative developments in our mainstream schools and given that today we have enough special school places for all children with a disability - 63 special schools with a total provision of 8,638 places - I believe Members will agree that we have taken major steps in the development of our special education services and have achieved concrete results of which all of us can be proud.

4

This does not mean that we should rest on our laurels - in our Hong Kong style, we never do. As with the development and expansion of any of our services, we must be on the constant alert to problems that may arise and tackle them robustly so that we can move forward to the next stage of development. In this regard, I agree fully with Members that the current difficulties in recruiting and retaining paramedical and other specialist staff for our special schools are adversely affecting the quality of our service and must be dealt with. I also .share the concern, too, that it is high time we should have a fresh look at the standards of provision including our teaching and nonteaching staff as well as the question of class size in our special schools - although I would hasten to add that our average pupil to teacher ratio at 5.7 to 1 compares favourably with some advanced countries such as the United Kingdom which happens to have the same ratio. For these reasons, the Administration had asked in mid 1994 the Board of Education to conduct a comprehensive review on special educational services to advise on further development both in the short and longer term. The Board subsequently appointed a Sub-committee to undertake this review. This Subcommittee commenced work in October last year and expects to complete its task by the end of 1995. Separately, a Working Group on Allied Health Personnel has been established under the Health and Welfare Branch to look into the question of shortages of paramedical and other allied health professionals and to propose solutions. I know that this Working Group has selected, as a matter of priority, physiotherapists and occupational therapists as their next targets for examination.

Thus, while I fully share the sentiments and the concerns of Members on the need for further improving our special educational services, it would be presumptuous of me to pre-empt the recommendations of the Board of Education’s Sub-Committee and indeed the Board’s own considerations of such recommendations by seeking priority funding at this stage to undertake the areas of improvements as set out in the motion. Such action may not adequately reflect the valuable advice which the Working Group on Allied Health Personnel may subsequently tender. Furthermore, to do so would not only do injustice to the Board of Education as a whole, but may be misconstrued - by an outsider if not by the Honourable Member himself - as a sign of disrespect to the Honourable Tik Chi-yuen in his capacity as a member of the Board’s Sub-Committee. What 1 can do is to assure Members that I will accord priority to the examination of the Board of Education’s recommendations as and when these are received and to seek funding support for the proposals on the basis of their merits. For the reasons already stated, Mr President, the Administration is unable to support the motion and will abstain from voting.

End/Wednesday, June 14. 1995

5

Motion debate on economic strategy *****

Following is the speech by the acting Financial Secretary, the Hon T H Chau, in the motion debate on economic strategy in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I share the concern expressed by many Honourable Members today about the genuine difficulties encountered by people displaced from jobs they have held for many years. Indeed, my colleagues and I agree with the underlying message of the Motion, which is that everyone who wants a job should be able to find one.

Turning to substance, however, the Motion urges the Government to formulate both short and long-term strategics to stimulate the economy and create employment opportunities. The proposed amendments call for tax concessions or tax incentives, and measures to address high rentals. These apparently attractive requests would, in fact, require a drastic change to Hong Kong’s fundamental economic philosophy. This philosophy has helped Hong Kong not only to cope so well with the restructuring of its economy in the past decade but also to become the economic miracle that it is today. Let me explain why.

The Proven Value of Our Economic Philosophy

Despite the impression given by the wording of the Motion, we do have an economic strategy which we have pursued consistently, with conviction, and with proven success. It stems from our fundamental philosophy that allowing market forces to determine the allocation of resources generates the most wealth and the greatest benefit to the community. Within this framework, our economic policy is simple and effective. On the one hand, we refrain from interfering with either the pace or the direction of economic development. On the other hand, we provide what is arguably the best business environment in the world.

It is a policy which recognises that economic development is best guided by the people who stand to win or lose by the business decisions they make. Centrally-determined visions of the future are not only most likely to be wrong, as experience in other economies has clearly and abundantly shown. To the extent that they blind us to alternative paths to economic development, they are also unhelpful. Who. for instance, could have envisioned in 1985, that Hong Kong investors would today, 10 short years later, control a huge trans-border manufacturing base, stretching far up into the Pearl River delta, employing more than three million manufacturing workers in Guangdong province alone, and fuelling an enormous growth in our service sector? Certainly not the bureaucrats, and if one bureaucrat had provided such a vision in 1985. no one. including those then in this Council, no one would have believed it.

6

Our economic policy recognises that market forces allow Hong Kong's economy to respond far more efficiently and effectively to changing circumstances than any intervention could ever do. It is no accident that despite enormous changes to its economy during the 1980s, Hong Kong suffered remarkably little disruption to employment or to the overall growth in our economy by comparison with many other economies.

Between 1982 and 1994, our manufacturing workforce halved, while industry's contribution to GDP fell from 20% to just over 11%. In many other countries, this rapid change would have spelled disaster. Not in Hong Kong. During the same period, total employment increased from 2.4 million to 2.9 million, an increase of 21%. During the same period, per capita GDP increased in real terms by 80%.

With such a large shift in the economy, it would be surprising if there was no dislocation. Indeed, in an economy as open as ours to the shifting business cycles of our trading partners, cyclical variations in the pattern of labour demand are inevitable. But our economic policy minimises these imbalances and helps to ensure that they are quickly corrected. For example, while the unemployment rate rose to a cyclical high of 4.1% in 1983, it then dropped quickly, falling to 2.6% in 1986, and further to 1.9% in 1987. We firmly believe that remaining true to our basic economic philosophy will be the quickest way of remedying the present problems.

By the same token, we do not agree that there is a need, or that it is desirable, for the Government to intervene to bring down rentals, be they for office, commercial or industrial space. On the contrary, we believe that prices and rentals for office space should continue to be adjusted by market forces. In this connection, it should be clear that what is a reasonable price, what is a reasonable rental, is one that is set by the free-playing of market forces, or by supply and demand. In the case of office accommodation, an additional 500,000 square metres of new office space was completed in 1994, representing an increase of 22% over 1993: and it appears that office prices and rentals are already softening. Large amounts of office space will become available in the next two years, with a further boost from developments connected with the airport railway and reclamation projects, which will certainly include a significant supply of commercial and industrial space. If we were to take precipitate action to reduce rentals, we would simply make it less attractive to construct new buildings, thereby reducing the supply in years to come.

7

The Policies and Measures We Pursue to Make Hong Kong Business Friendly

Mr President, through you I would respectfully ask Honourable Members to note that our economic policy is not one of positive non-intervention which is of course a contradictioning term and which I have never thought was a particularly clever slogan. Our policy is one of minimum intervention. Our policy of minimum intervention is balanced by a commitment to maintain the most business- friendly environment that we can. We make it easy to set up in business in Hong Kong. Our taxation system is simple and consistent, and levels of tax are very low by world standards. Regulations governing businesses in such areas as employment, the environment and health and safety are transparent and relatively uncomplicated. Our trade regime is straightforward; there are no import or export tariffs, and licensing controls are kept to the minimum.

In addition, we provide an extensive and growing range of services to equip both employers and employees to respond to the changing demands of the market place. As both the Governor and my colleague the Secretary' for Education and Manpower have only last week outlined the measures the Government is taking to improve the employment situation over the short to medium term, I will not reiterate those. But I should like to reiterate that measures such as the Employment Retraining j Scheme have proved to be genuinely useful in helping displaced workers to re-enter the job market. As the Secretary for Education and Manpower has undertaken, we shall review this and other measures to see how we can make them even more effective.

Since some Honourable Members have drawn particular attention to the need for active measures to help the manufacturing sector, I should like to mention some of the measures we are taking to help manufacturers to adjust to changing economic circumstances.

Now that Hong Kong is no longer a low-wage economy, it is inevitable that many lower value-added processes such as fabrication, assembly and packaging have been relocated elsewhere, notably China. If manufacturers are to remain competitive in world markets, it is vital that they focus on higher value-added activities such as design, tooling, pilot production, manufacture of complex components, testing, marketing, and distribution.

c ■' i . •* ' - j . .T

For this reason, we have, over a period of several years, pursued a consistent policy of upgrading Hong Kong’s technological infrastructure and support services, in order to help industry move up-market. For example, during the last few years, we have established the Industrial Technology Centre, set up the Industrial Support Fund and the Applied Research and Development Fund, opened a new/industrial estate, stepped up accreditation of local laboratories, and expanded the' services of the Productivity Council and the Standards and Calibration Bureau.

8

Incidentally, Mr President, I would dare anyone to say that our industrial support policy is a do-nothing policy or a passive one. When the Industrial Support Fund went up from zero in 1993-94 to $180 million, an infinite increase in mathematical terms, in 1994-95 and further to $210 million in 1995-96. On top of all that we also spend $250 million in building the Industrial Technology Centre and $180 million in funding it, and further $200 million has been allocated to the Applied Research Fund.

We intend to go on upgrading our technological infrastructure. Next week, we shall seek approval from the Finance Committee of this Council for funds to establish the Cooperative Applied Research and Development Scheme, to be run by the Applied Research Council in cooperation with research institutions in China. In addition, we are studying the possibility of a second technology centre, a fourth industrial estate, and a science park.

Why a More Interventionist Strategvjsvould be Impracticable

But for those Honourable Members convinced that the Government should intervene to stimulate the economy artificially, let us consider what tools we could use:

* Not interest rates. Even if we were able to manipulate interest rates, it is by no means certain that lower interest rates would act as a boost to the economy, since many economic activities may not be particularly sensitive to interest rate movements, again as experience in other economies have shown. But the vital importance of maintaining exchange rate and monetary stability in the run- up to 1997 and beyond requires us to maintain the peg with the US dollar. This means that there is no scope for lowering interest rates to stimulate the economy.

Not subsidies. Even if we believed that distorting market forces was a good thing - which we emphatically do not, to provide subsidies to our expdrt-oriented manufacturing industries would be contrary to our obligations under the World Trade Organization and would lay us open to challenge and trade sanctions by our trading partners.

* Not more imported labour. Even though the present comparatively modest levels of labour importation secure many more jobs for Hong Kong workers than they displace, I doubt that there would be much support in this Council for even a small increase, let alone a scheme on the much larger scale of that in Singapore, which, incidentally, is one of the reasons why, in the past several years, Singapore has been able to achieve substantially higher economic growth rates than Hong Kong and considerably lower inflation rates than Hong Kong.

9

Not higher public spending. The policy of keeping the growth of public expenditure in line with the trend growth rate of the economy is a vital ingredient of Hong Kong’s success. In any case, adding to our already substantial programme of infrastructure investment would simply divert resources from the private sector, suck in more imports and increase inflationary pressures.

And last, but not least, not tax concessions or tax incentives. Given the already low rates of corporate tax in Hong Kong, and the generous depreciation allowances for expenditure on equipment and buildings, tax concessions are more likely to stoke inflation than to stimulate the economy. In any case, substantial tax cuts would either require corresponding cuts in public expenditure, or entail a significant budget deficit, which is not desirable on fiscal grounds.

Finally, Honourable Members may wish to know that a recent IMF (i.e. International Monetary Fund) report suggests that given the economic situation of Hong Kong and the prospective acceleration of infrastructural investment, our budget should be formulated in such a manner as to avoid providing additional stimulus to the economy.

Conclusion

In sum, given an economy as open as ours and as dependent on world markets as ours, the Government’s policy of minimum intervention in market forces is not only the best for Hong Kong. It is the only realistic economic policy. Government measures to stimulate economic activity in order to generate employment opportunities would not only be impracticable within the framework of our economic philosophy, but they would also produce undesirable side-effects, which would negate any beneficial impact that they might have in the short term and damage our economy and our economic prospects in the long term. So while my colleagues and I recognise the sincere concerns underlying this Motion and the proposed amendments and while the Government is committed to alleviating the situation through the measures which my colleague the Secretary for Education and Manpower spelled out clearly and in detail during last week's lengthy motion debate in this Council on unemployment, the ex-officio Members will demonstrate the courage of the Government’s convictions by voting against the Motion as well as the proposed amendments.

10

Mr President, for too long now this Council has been a chamber of doom and gloom. Let me dare to put it to Honourable Members that political leadership does not consist only in exposing the dark side of our community and telling our citizens how badly off they are. Not too long ago, there was an American President who indulged in telling himself and his people, again and again, about the malaise that their country was in. He managed to make American voters feel so depressed that he became a one-term President because, at the next election, most of them voted for his opponent, who ran an upbeat election campaign which made them feel good again about their country.

Mr President, Honourable Members ought to know that there is such a thing as talking the economy down. If people do not feel good about their prospects, their desire to consume is inevitably reduced and that will have unfavourable knock-on effects on the economy as a whole. So, Mr President, at the risk of delaying Honourable Members' supper by a few more minutes, please allow me to take Honourable Members on a tour of the sunlit uplands of our still prosperous economy and to end my speech on an optimistic note by quoting a few facts about Hong Kong, of which the people of Hong Kong can justly be proud.

Hong Kong is today the 8th largest trading entity in the world. If the member states of the European Union are counted as one, which they should be, then Hong Kong is the world's 5th largest trading entity. America with a population 40 times that of Hong Kong, has a total trade value which is only 4 times that of Hong Kong.

* Hong Kong's per capita GDP is the highest in Asia after Japan. In the past two years, we have overtaken developed countries such as Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom, which all now have lower per capita GDP than ours.

According to the World Bank, Hong Kong's per capita income, expressed in terms of actual purchasing power, is the 6th highest in the world, after Luxembourg, the United States, Switzerland and two oilrich Arab states and ahead of Japan and Germany.

Our port is the largest in the world in terms of container throughput.

* Our airport is the world's 2nd busiest in terms of international passengers

and 4th busiest in terms of international cargo.

* Hong Kong is one of the world's leading financial centres - 5th largest in terms of the volume of external banking transactions; 6th largest in terms of foreign exchange transactions; 8th largest in terms of stock market capitalisation.

11

In short, when you measure all of those achievements against our very small physical size and population and our lack of natural resources, the only conclusion you can come to is that Hong Kong is an economic miracle. This miracle has not come about as a result of any direction or blueprint developed by the Government or indeed any vision provided by bureaucrats like me. The Government’s role has been limited to the maintenance of an environment in which business can thrive - a free and open society; the rule of law; a low, sifriple and stable taxation system; superior physical as well as human infrastructure; and the Government’s sound macro- economic policies and firm belief in the benefits of minimum intervention in market forces. Clearly it is not the Government but rather it is a combination of the hard work of the people of Hong Kong, their ingenuity and their entrepreneurial spirit, that has created this economic miracle. And long may this continue to be the case!

Mr President, many commentators have predicted that the 21st century will be the Asia Pacific Century. I am convinced that they are right. I am equally convinced that, under the principle of "one country, two systems", and as a highly autonomous Special Administrative Region under Chinese sovereignty - as a separate customs territory, as a separate member of the World Trade Organization and as a separate economic entity which will continue to enjoy autonomy in the conduct of our external economic relations - Hong Kong is set to enter the Asia Pacific Century as the world’s most brilliant example of the triumph of free trade, of free enterprise and of capitalism.

Thank you.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

HK people's interests best served by CFA Bill: AG *****

The Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, has urged Legislative Councillors to support the passage of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill the early enactment which was clearly the wish of both the local and international communities.

Speaking at the second reading of the Bill today (Wednesday), Mr Mathews said Councillors had a clear choice.

12

"Passage of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill will guarantee the establishment of a proper Court of Final Appeal on 1 July 1997 with Sino-British cooperation and in accordance with this Bill, which is based on the established principles and practices of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.

"The alternative of rejecting the Bill will leave the establishment of the Court of Final Appeal to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region after 1 July 1997, creating damaging and unnecessary uncertainty about the eventual form of the Court of Final Appeal," he said.

Mr Mathews pointed out that the major aim in ensuring continuity of the rule of law through the transition was to safeguard two key principles - that the Court of Final Appeal should be a proper Court of Final Appeal and that there should not be a damaging judicial vacuum in 1997.

The agreement now concluded with the Chinese side on the Court of Final Appeal safeguards both these two points, he said.

He added that the Bill before the Council was based on the principles and practices of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, and that its early enactment would end uncertainty about the form of the Court of Final Appeal to be set up.

The Attorney General responded to three queries that had been raised against the agreement.

There was the suggestion that the jurisdiction of the Court of Final Appeal would be restricted by including in the Bill the formulation of "acts of state" in Article 19 of the Basic Law.

This argument is devoid of any legal merit and is. as the Governor has said, a red herring. Mr Mathews said.

He noted that as a matter of law, Article 19 of the Basic Law would operate as from 1 July 1997 and under its provision. HKSAR Courts would have no jurisdiction over acts of state such as defence and foreign affairs. The Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Ordinance would come into operation on the same day and could not override the Basic Law.

"So as a matter of law. the jurisdiction of the Hong Kong Courts will be subject to Article 19. The recognition of this inescapable fact is not a concession, and nor does it restrict the jurisdiction of the courts further than is provided in the Basic Law," he said.

13

On the commencement provision in the Bill, Mr Mathews said some had argued that as the legislation would not be in operation before I July 1997, it would not be a "law previously in force" and would be unconstitutional because of Article 18 of the Basic Law.

This argument overlooks two vital points, he said: "First the Chinese text of Article 18 does not refer to 'laws previously in force in 1 long Kong', but in effect to 'laws which Hong Kong originally had'.

"Secondly, the English text of Article 18 refers to laws previously in force in Hong Kong 'as provided for in Article 8'. Article 8, in referring to 'the laws previously in force in Hong Kong' says 'that is, the common law. rules of equity, ordinances, subordinate legislation and customary law.'

"Once the Court of Final Appeal Bill is enacted it will clearly be an Ordinance, and will therefore be a law previously in force in Hong Kong within the meaning of Article 8...", Mr Mathews said.

As regards the "four plus one" composition of the Court of Final Appeal, Mr Mathews pointed out that the assertion that it breached the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law was incorrect and had been rejected by both British and Chinese Governments.

"Our view that the four plus one composition is consistent with the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law is supported by a number of authoritative and independent legal opinions," he said.

"We have not the slightest doubt that the four plus one composition is a perfectly acceptable way of implementing the provisions in the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law that provide for judges from other common law jurisdictions to sit on the Court of Final Appeal," he added.

Turning to the Bill itself. Mr Mathews said there were provisions which would help to ensure a smooth transition.

"Clause 49 of the Bill provides that any appeal to the Privy Council in respect of which leave to appeal has been granted but which has not been finally disposed of before I July 1997 shall proceed in the Court of Final Appeal.

14

"Clauses 24 and 33 make it possible for appeals to the Court of Final Appeal to be made outside the normal period of 28 days if leave is obtained. This will enable the court to hear appeals from decisions made in the period shortly before the transfer of sovereignty," he said.

Transitional provisions under Clause 49 are set out in Part IV of the Bill which contains miscellaneous provisions. Other Parts of the Bill set out provisions for the establishment of the Court, and provisions in respect of civil appeals and criminal appeals respectively.

End/Wcdnesday. June 14, 1995

I long Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill *****

Following is the speech of the Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, in moving the second reading of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President.

I move the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill be read the second time. This Bill provides the legislative framework for setting up the Court of Final Appeal in Hong Kong.

The Sino-British Agreement

Last Friday, 9 June, Members of this Council were briefed by the Governor about the agreement we had reached with the Chinese side on the question of the Court of Final Appeal, immediately after the agreement had formally been signed by the Senior Representatives of the Joint Liaison Group. The Governor commended the agreement to this Council as an agreement which serves the best interests of I long Kong. Our objective has always been to find an acceptable way of ensuring the continuity of the rule of law in Hong Kong through the transition in 1997. Our major aim in this process was to safeguard two key principles - that the Court of Final Appeal should be a proper Court of Final Appeal and that there should not be a damaging judicial vacuum in 1997. The agreement we have now concluded safeguards both these important points.

15

Point 4 of the agreement sets out the Chinese side's agreement to the Court of Final Appeal Bill and also their agreement that the legislative procedures for the Bill should be taken forward immediately to enable them to be completed as soon as possible before the end of July 1995. This guarantees that the Court of Final Appeal to be set up on 1 July 1997 will be in accordance with the Bill now before this Council. This Bill is based on the principles and practices of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. Its early enactment will end the uncertainty about the form of the Court of Final Appeal to be set up in Hong Kong, which has had a damaging effect on public and international confidence in the judicial system. It will help maintain that public and international confidence in the Court of Final Appeal and in our judicial system as a whole.

I am pleased that some Members of this Council have already expressed their support for the agreement we have reached with the Chinese side, including the early enactment of the Bill within the current session. However, a few Members have queried some aspects of the agreement. I wish to respond to these queries, with particular reference to the relevant provisions in the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill.

Jurisdiction of the CFA

First 1 would like to discuss the proposed jurisdiction of the court and to refute the suggestion that we are restricting the jurisdiction of the Court of Final Appeal by including in the Bill the formulation of "acts of state" in Article 19 of the Basic Law. Frankly, I do not understand the logic of this argument, which is devoid of any legal merit. It is, as the Governor has said, a red herring.

Clause 4 of the Bill reflects Article 19 of the Basic Law by providing that the court shall have no jurisdiction over acts of state such as defence and foreign affairs. It has been alleged that the provision is the result of a concession by the British side of the Joint Liaison Group. This allegation has no foundation whatsoever.

Indeed. Mr President, it is strange that when we propose to align the Court of Final Appeal Bill on this point with the Basic Law. we are accused of kowtowing. But when others propose to amend the Bill to align it with the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law then that becomes a matter of principle.

16

As a matter of law, Article 19 of the Basic Law will operate as from 1 July 1997. Article 19 provides that the Courts of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall have no jurisdiction over acts of state such as defence and foreign affairs. The Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Ordinance will come into operation on the same day and cannot, of course, override the Basic Law. So as a matter of law, the jurisdiction of the Hong Kong Courts will be subject to Article 19. The recognition of this inescapable fact is not a concession, and nor does it restrict the jurisdiction of the courts further than is provided in the Basic Law.

Before I leave the jurisdiction of the Court of Final Appeal, I should point out that the Chinese side have agreed that there is no need for any further legislative or other provisions in relation to the power of the courts to enquire into the constitutionality of laws or to provide for post- verdict remedial mechanisms. All members of this Council will, I am sure, agree that this is an important point, as it will ensure that the jurisdiction of Hong Kong’s Court of Final Appeal will, subject to the provisions of the Basic Law, be the same as that of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.

Selling up the CourtouJ July 1997

I now turn to the commencement provision in the Bill. It has all along been our objective to introduce the Court of Final Appeal Bill into this Council with the agreement of the Chinese side, because only that would guarantee that the Court of Final Appeal will endure after 1 July 1997. We have now agreed with the Chinese side that the Court of Final Appeal should be established on 1 July 1997. It is no secret that we would have preferred to establish the Court of Final Appeal by July 1996 to give it about a year to build up experience before the transfer of sovereignty. But we would have had to pay a very high price to achieve that. By introducing the Court of Final Appeal Bill into this Council without Chinese agreement and with no guarantee that any Court set up as a result would survive 1997 would have meant a loss of public and international confidence in the form of the Court of Final Appeal after 30 June 1997.

Thus, as stated in the agreement, the Court of Final Appeal will be established on 1 July 1997 in accordance with the Court of Final Appeal Bill after it has been passed by this Council. Clause 1(2) of the Bill makes it clear that that will be the case. The Court of Final Appeal Ordinance will come into operation on the day after 30 June 1997, that is 1 July, and it will be amended to the extent necessary to ensure that it conforms with the Basic Law.

17

The provision for this legislation to come into operation on 1 July 1997 has given rise to some legal controversy. Some have argued that it is unconstitutional because of Article 18 of the Basic Law. I wish to reject that suggestion in no uncertain terms. Article 18 of the Basic Law provides that the laws in force in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region shall include "the laws previously in force in Hong Kong as provided for in Article 8" of the Basic Law. Some have argued that as the legislation will not be in operation before 1 July 1997 it will not be a "law previously in force" and will not therefore be a law in force in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

Mr President, this argument overlooks two vital points. First, the Chinese text of Article 18 does not refer to "laws previously in force in Hong Kong", but (in effect) to "laws which Hong Kong originally had." The Court of Final Appeal Ordinance would clearly be such a law. Secondly, the English text of Article 18 refers to laws previously in force in Hong Kong "as provided for in Article 8". Article 8, in referring to "the laws previously in force in Hong Kong" says (and I quote) "that is, the common law, rules of equity, ordinances, subordinate legislation and customary law". Once the Court of Final Appeal Bill is enacted it will clearly be an Ordinance, and will therefore be a law previously in force in Hong Kong within the meaning of Article 8. even though it is not brought into operation before 1 July 1997. There is therefore no merit whatsoever in the argument that this legislation cannot be brought into operation on 1 July 1997.

The commencement provision, combined with other arrangements I shall refer to shortly, will ensure that there is no judicial vacuum as a result of the establishment of the Court of Final Appeal. Nobody will be deprived of his or her right of appeal because of the inevitable and short gap between the ending of appeals to the Privy Council and the establishment of the Court. As I mentioned earlier, this has been one of our key objectives.

According to the agreement reached in the Joint Liaison Group last week, the preparatory work for the establishment of the court will be done before the transfer of sovereignty. On 1 July 1997. therefore, the judges can be appointed, the rules of court made, and the court can commence work immediately. With regard to appeals lodged before the transfer of sovereignty, the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council will keep its jurisdiction to hear appeals from Hong Kong until 30 June 1997. We have received the British Government's assurance that the Privy Council will continue to retain its jurisdiction over cases from Hong Kong up to 30 June 1997, and will give priority to Hong Kong appeals in the months immediately prior to July of that year.

18

There are other provisions in the Bill which will help to ensure a smooth transition. First, clause 49 of the Bill provides that any appeal to the Privy Council in respect of which leave to appeal has been granted but which has not been finally disposed of before 1 July 1997 shall proceed in the Court of Final Appeal. That court is empowered to give such directions as to the continuation of the appeal as it thinks fit. We will discuss with the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council and the team designate of the Special Administrative Region the implementation of this transitional provision to ensure the orderly transfer of any business unfinished by 30 June 1997. In addition to clause 49, clauses 24 and 33 make it possible for appeals to the Court of Final Appeal to be made outside the normal period of 28 days if leave is obtained. This will enable the court to hear appeals from decisions made in the period shortly before the transfer of sovereignty.

Composition of the CFA

I now turn to the composition of the Court of Final Appeal which, as Members will know only too well, is based on the 4 plus 1 formula. This formula was agreed by the British and Chinese Governments in the Joint Liaison Group in September 1991. According to this agreement, the Court of Final Appeal, in every sitting, will consist of the Chief Justice, three permanent Hong Kong judges and one non-permanent judge, who could be either from Hong Kong or from another common law jurisdiction. The permanent and non-permanent Hong Kong judges could be either local or expatriate.

It has been argued that the 4 plus 1 formula breaches the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law. This assertion is not correct, and has been rejected by both the British and the Chinese Governments. Our view that the 4 plus 1 composition is consistent with the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law is supported by a number of authoritative and independent legal opinions.

I spoke at length on this subject during the Motion Debate in this Council on 3 May, and I will not repeat now what I said then. Suffice it to say that we have not the slightest doubt that the 4 plus 1 composition is a perfectly acceptable way of implementing the provisions in the Joint Declaration and the Basic Law that provide forjudges from other common law jurisdictions to sit on the Court of Final Appeal. Indeed the Bill itself reflects this consistency. In Clause 5, which provides for the Constitution of the Court, sub-clause (3) includes the wording of the Joint Declaration and Article 82 of the Basic Law that "the Court may as required invite judges from other common law jurisdictions to sit on the Court". The 4 plus 1 composition is reflected in Clause 16(1) of the Bill, which specifies the composition of the Court when it hears a particular appeal.

19

Other Provisions

Mr President, I have dealt so far with those provisions in the Court of Final Appeal Bill which concern the three main questions that have been raised on the agreement reached with the Chinese side on 9 June. I would now like to take Members through the other principal provisions of the Bill.

Part 1 of the Bill sets out the provisions for the establishment of the Court. The appointments of the Chief Justice and of the other Court of Final Appeal judges are provided for in Clauses 6 to 9. which provide that those appointments shall be made by the Governor (the Chief Executive as from 1 July 1997) in accordance with the recommendation of an independent commission. This commission will be known as the Judicial Officers Recommendation Commission.

Clause 12 prescribes the qualifications of the Chief Justice and the other judges of the Court of Final Appeal. These are based on the existing qualifications for appointment to the Supreme Court, and incorporate additional qualifications suggested by both the legal profession and the Preliminary Working Committee.

The tenure of office of the Chief Justice and other judges of the Court of Final Appeal is provided for in Clause 14. The term of office of a permanent judge, including the Chief Justice, may be extended beyond retirement age for a maximum of two terms of 3 years each; and each term of office for a non-permanent judge is to be for 3 years. The term of office of a Chief Justice may be extended by the Governor (the Chief Executive as from 1 July 1997) in accordance with the recommendation of the Judicial Officers Recommendation Commission. The term of office of any other judge may be extended by the Governor (once again the Chief Executive as from 1 July 1997) in accordance with the recommendation of the Chief Justice.

Parts II and III of the Bill set out the provisions in respect of civil appeals and criminal appeals, respectively. These are based on the established principles and practices of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. Some of these provisions have been amended to take into account the comments of the Law Society and the Bar Association when the draft Bill was sent to them at the end of last year. I would here like to express my appreciation to those two bodies for their helpful comments on many technical aspects of the Bill.

Part IV contains miscellaneous provisions, including the transitional provisions under Clause 49 to which I referred earlier. Clauses 38-48 provide for the making of rules, the setting up of the Registry, the appointment of the Registrar and the regulation of the sittings and business of the Court of Final Appeal. These provisions are in line with current court practices in Hong Kong.

20

Clause 50 provides for consequential amendments to other legislation as set out in the Schedule. These are mainly related to the statutory powers of the Chief Justice. They transfer most of the current Chief Justice's statutory powers to the Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal, to reflect the fact that the latter will be the head of the Judiciary. However, the current Chief Justice's powers in relation to the operation and jurisdiction of the High Court and Court of Appeal are preserved for the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. We have also included in the Schedule an amendment to section 83 P of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance. The amendment makes it clear that the Governor's power to refer certain cases to the Court of Appeal under that section will apply to appeals heard and determined by the Court of Final Appeal.

Conclusion

Mr President, Members of this Council now have a clear choice. Passage of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Bill will guarantee the establishment of a proper Court of Final Appeal on 1 July 1997 with Sino-British co-operation and in accordance with this Bill, which is based on the established practices and procedures of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council; the alternative of rejecting this Bill will leave the establishment of the Court of Final Appeal to the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region after 1 July 1997, creating damaging and unnecessary uncertainty about the eventual form of the Court. 1 very much hope that Members will agree with the Administration that the interests of the people of Hong Kong are clearly best served by passing this Bill.

The agreement that we have reached with the Chinese side has received a warm welcome from the business community, both in Hong Kong and overseas. Hong Kong's major partners have firmly endorsed it. An independent survey commissioned by Ming Pao has shown that it also has the wide support of the Hong Kong public. It is clear that both the local and international communities wish to see the early enactment of the Court of Final Appeal Bill to provide certainty about the form of the Court of Final Appeal to be set up in Hong Kong on 1 July 1997. I hope that we can count on the support of all Members for the Court of Final Appeal Bill.

End/Wednesday, June 14. 1995

21

Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Bill ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in moving the second reading of the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Bill in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the Second Reading of the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Bill.

The object of this Bill is to provide for the mandatory establishment of nongovernmental provident fund schemes for the purpose of funding benefits on retirement. It will be beneficial for those in the workforce. There is then the separate question of social security: this is being reviewed elsewhere.

The Bill itself constitutes a framework for the mandatory provident fund schemes system. Certain matters are provided for substantively in the Bill, while other important matters will be provided for in future subsidiary legislation. The subsidiary legislation will, of course, be the subject of full and detailed discussion with all the parties concerned.

The Bill is divided into six parts, and nine schedules, covering the main features of the Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) Schemes system, which I believe Members will be familiar with, so I shall concentrate on specific clauses.

Part I

Clause 4 provides for exemptions from the mandatory provisions of the Bill for persons listed in Part 1 of Schedule 1. Exempt persons include civil servants who are governed by pensions legislation, teachers to whom the Subsidised Schools Provident Fund Rules and Grant Schools Provident Fund Rules apply, and persons who are already 64 years of age by the time the Schedule comes into operation. There is also provision for exemption for persons coming from overseas to work in Hong Kong who are already covered by a retirement scheme outside Hong Kong; persons, regardless ofcoverage, who come here from overseas to work for a period of less than 180 days; and also those persons who have been employed for a continuous period of less than 30 days. The employers of such persons are also exempted.

22

RaiUI

Clause 5 of the bill provides for the establishment of the MPF Schemes Authority. The functions of the Authority include ensuring compliance with the provisions of the legislation, the approval, regulation and prudential supervision of trustees, and the registration of provident fund schemes.

Part III

The heart of the Bill is in clauses 6(1), 6(2) and 6(3). Under clause 6(1), the employer must arrange for a registered provident fund scheme to receive contributions in respect of his relevant employees. Clause 6(2) requires the employer to contribute to the registered scheme the employer’s contribution of 5% of relevant income of each relevant employee, to deduct from the relevant income of each relevant employee the employee’s contribution of 5% of that income, and to remit the whole contribution to the trustee of the registered scheme no later than seven working days following payday. Clause 6(3) imposes a relevant requirement on self-employed persons to contribute 5% of their income.

Clause 8 of the Bill allows employees or self-employed persons whose relevant income is less than the minimum level specified in Schedule 3 to elect whether or not they wish to contribute to a provident fund scheme. On the advice of the Labour Advisory Board, employers of such persons will still have to contribute, irrespective of the employee’s election. The provision will benefit the 240.000 members of our workforce whose income is below the current prescribed level of $4,000 a month.

Clause 10 of the Bill provides that contributions made in excess of the* percentage level specified in Schedule 4, or after retirement age when an employee remains in employment or a self employed person in business, shall be voluntary.

An important feature of a mandatory system of provident fund schemes is the preservation of benefits until retirement age, i.e. under normal circumstances benefits are not paid out upon each change of job. but are preserved until retirement. Benefits may be transferred from one scheme to another upon change of job. Under clause 12, scheme trustees are prohibited from paying out accrued retirement benefits to any scheme member other than in accordance with clause 14. Clause 14 allows preserved benefits to be withdrawn as of right, in a lump sum, once a scheme member reaches the age of 65. It also provides for the early withdrawal of benefits by a scheme member who has reached the age of 60 and who has left the workforce permanently, as well as for early withdrawal under such circumstances as total disability or incapacity, or permanent departure from Hong Kong. Clause 13 deals with the transferability of benefits from scheme to scheme.

23

A major area of public concern has been the safety of accrued retirement benefits, and the provision for compensation in the event of losses. This is provided for under clause 16(1), which enables the Authority to establish a compensation fund to deal with benefit losses brought about by misfeasance or illegal conduct. Clauses 16(2) and 16(3) provide for a compensation fund to be financed by a levy on the assets of registered schemes, to be paid by approved trustees. Clause 16(5) allows the Financial Secretary to provide grants or loans, payable from general revenue, to the compensation fund. There will be no guarantee against losses arising from poor investment performance as this would only encourage unscrupulous investment managers to take the kind of undue risks which we would all wish to avoid.

Part IV

Clause 19 deals with scheme administration. A registered scheme, other than a master trust scheme, must be administered by an approved trustee, who could be an individual or a corporate trustee, while a master trust scheme must be administered by a corporate trustee. Trustees or corporate trustees may apply to the Authority for approval as an approved trustee of a registered scheme. Clause 20 enables approved trustees to apply to the Authority for the registration of a provident fund scheme as a registered scheme.

Clause 22 of the Bill allows the Authority to authorise a corporate trustee to be the approved trustee of a residual provident fund scheme. This would allow access to a scheme for those persons whose employers were unable to find one on the open market, serve as a receptacle for unclaimed benefits from other schemes, and facilitate the portability of benefits between schemes.

Clause 27 allows the Authority, after consultation with the Financial Secretary, to make guidelines in respect of forbidden investment practices, which, if undertaken by approved trustees, might prejudice the financial soundness of these schemes. Clause 28 requires trustees to comply with limitations or prohibitions in respect of restricted investments, i.e. loans to or investments in the employers of scheme members. Clauses 29, 30 and 31 confer power of regulation of trustees by the Authority. The Authority may require special audit reports, disclosure of information and production of documents (Clause 29), appoint inspectors to investigate the affairs of a scheme (Clause 30) and in appropriate circumstances, remove trustees (Clause 31).

- 24 -

Part V

J ’1 - ■ •’ > • •

Clauses 33 to 38 deal with the establishment of the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Appeal Board, and matters relating to appeals.

Part VI

Clauses 39 and 40 deal with the disclosure of information acquired while carrying out any function under the Bill.

Clause 41 provides for offences which may be committed by employers, selfemployed persons and scheme trustees. We believe that offences in respect of mandatory contributory provident fund schemes are serious, especially where an employer may deduct the relevant employee contribution, for example, but fails to remit it to the scheme trustee within the stipulated time, and therefore the penalties provided for in clause 43 are commensurate with the gravity of the offences.

, Clauses 44 and 45 enable the Governor in Council and the Authority respectively to make regulations and rules regarding a wide range of issues, for the effectual carrying out of the provisions and objects of the Ordinance, including provision for the early withdrawal of benefits, the operation of the compensation fund, the management of registered schemes and the maintenance of employees' accounts.

... . -•• • ■• . ■ -)5.

• - ■ ... •

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995 • '

Road Traffic Ordinance

* * ♦ ♦ ♦

■f •• ■' . . • . > •

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in moving the motion in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday) regarding the number of public light buses as specified in the Road Traffic Ordinance:

' ’ ' • . ... ... • • • ( •' •

e \ k 4

Mr President,

>P> ■ ! • ' "■

I move the motion standing in my name on the Order Paper.

25

Section 23(1) of the Road Traffic Ordinance provides for the Govemor-in-Council to specify a limit on the number on any class of vehicles, whilst section 23(3) provides for the Legislative Council to extend the period for such a limit remains in force. In exercise of these powers, the number of public light buses (PLBs) has been limited to 4,350.

PLBs play an important supplementary role in our transport network, particularly in providing essential feeder services. That is why the Administration continues to convert non-scheduled red minibus services to green minibus services which operate on specified schedules along fixed routes at approved fares.

But the fact remains that PLBs are less efficient road users than high capacity franchised buses. They also cause traffic and other problems. That is why it has been our policy to limit their numbers.

The last major review of the policy on the role of PLBs was conducted in 1988. It is now time to undertake another comprehensive review and I intend to put this in train. In the meantime we need to maintain the status quo on the number of PLBs. Mr President, the motion before Honourable Members provides for this.

Sir, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

A

Revision of the Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance *****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in moving the motion in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday) that the fees and charges specified in the Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance be revised:

Mr President,

I move the first motion standing in my name on the Order Paper. This proposes increases in the fees specified in the Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance for the registration of births and deaths and related matters.

26

A recent review of fees and charges collected by Immigration Department has indicated that in various areas, the Department is not recovering its costs : these are, the registration of persons, where the average shortfall is about 16%; the registration of births, deaths and marriages, where the average shortfall is about 26%; and the issue of travel documents, where the average shortfall is about 16%.

It is Government policy to provide services to the public on a cost-recovery basis, unless there are good reasons for doing otherwise. We are, therefore, proposing to revise the fees in the three areas I have mentioned. Full details of the increases proposed are contained in the Annex which I have tabled for the information of Members.

The fees to be revised were last revised in July 1994. If approved, the new fees will be introduced on 1 July this year.

. ■ ; if'

, .. - ...

Mr President, I beg to move.

' * ■. J } # * . \ '

t A

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Revision of Foreign Marriage Ordinance

*****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr, Ken Woodhouse, in moving the motion for fees and charges specified in the Foreign Marriage Ordinance be revised in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the second motion standing in my name on the Order Paper. It seeks to increase the fees specified in the Foreign Marriage Ordinance.

.fX

The Foreign Marriage Ordinance provides a means whereby Commonwealth citizens, can give a notice of marriage in Hong Kong, even though the marriage has taken place at the British Embassy abroad. Fees are payable for the issue of a certificate by the Registrar of Marriage. The fees were last revised in July 1994 and it is now proposed to increase them from $40 to $55, for a certificate by the Registrar of Marriages, given under Section 5, and from $400 to $540, for a Governor's licence, given under Section 6 of this Ordinance.

Mr President, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

21

Revision of Legitimacy Ordinance ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in moving the motion in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday) that the fees and charges specified in the Legitimacy Ordinance be revised:

Mr President,

I move the third motion in my name on the Order Paper. It seeks to increase the fees specified in the Schedule to the Legitimacy Ordinance.

The Legitimacy Ordinance provides for the re-registration of the births of legitimated persons. Fees collected relate to the re-registration of births and the issue of certified copies of entries of the birth of legitimated persons. The fees were last revised in July 1994. It is now proposed to revise the fees from $200 to $270, for reregistration of births, and from $80 to $110, for a certified copy of an entry of the birth.

Mr President, I beg to move.

i

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995: second reading

* ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Chief Secretary, the Hon Michael Suen, in the resumption of the second reading of the Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

On 25 January this year, the Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill was introduced into this Council. This Bill seeks to implement the recommendations made by an interdepartmental working group set up to undertake a comprehensive review pf the law, policy and practice governing the provision of legal aid services, taking into account the comments on a consultation paper published in April 1993. The objective of the Bill is to improve the scope and the operation of legal aid services in Hong Kong.

28

I would first like to thank Members of the Bills Committee, especially its Chairman, the Honourable Mr. Ronald Arculli, for their hard work and thorough examination of the Bill. We have responded positively to most of the ideas put forward by Members of the Bills Committee and these are reflected in the CSAs which I will move later. I believe the Bill has the support of most Members of the Committee, and I hope it will now receive the full support of this Council.

Mr President, I would now like to continue by outlining briefly the three major elements of the Bill.

First, the Bill will raise the financial eligibility limit for the standard legal aid scheme from $120,000 to $144,000. This proposed increase has taken into account the level of inflation since the current limit was set in 1992. The Administration will in future revise the limit every two years in the light of inflation. We will also conduct a comprehensive review of the overall approach that we take to assessing the financial eligibility of applicants every five years.

Secondly, the Bill seeks to expand the scope of the standard civil legal aid scheme. It gives the Director of Legal Aid the discretion to waive the financial eligibility limit in any civil cases where an applicant has a meritorious Bill of Rights (BOR) claim. This will include individuals making election petitions based on meritorious BOR claims. As a matter of human rights policy, legal aid will also be extended to persons making applications to the Mental Health Review Tribunal against detention in a mental hospital or the Correctional Services Department Psychiatric Centre.

Thirdly, the Bill introduces improvements to the Supplementary Legal Aid Scheme which provides assistance to the "sandwich class" whose financial resources are in excess of the amount prescribed for the standard legal aid scheme, but may not be sufficient to meet the high costs of conducting litigation on a private basis. The first improvement is to increase the upper financial limit under this supplementary scheme from $280,000 to $400,000, taking into account inflation since the introduction of the Scheme in 1984. This limit will also be revised in future on a biennial basis to take inflation into account. -

At present, legal aid under the supplementary scheme is restricted to a number of civil proceedings, including certain claims in the District Court for damages and compensation for personal injuries. The Bill now expands the scope of the supplementary scheme to cover claims involving professional negligence on the part of medical doctors, dentists and lawyers, the three professions which have most frequent contacts with individual members of the public.

29

We have heard just now that both the Honourable Mr Simon Ip and the Honourable Dr C H Leong are in favour of expanding the Supplementary Legal Aid Scheme to cover professional negligence against all professions. We are concerned however, that any further expansion at this stage to cover more new types of cases would jeopardise the financial viability of the scheme. Furthermore, we have a practical problem in defining "all professions" for this purpose. But however let me say it for the record and let me reassure Members that we will keep the operation of the scheme under review and negligence claims against members of other specific professions will be considered for inclusion at a later date when we consider that the scheme is financially capable of further expansion.

Finally, in the light of the operational experience of the Legal Aid Department, the Bill includes a number of detailed amendments to formalise or to improve the practices relating to the provision of legal aid in both civil and criminal cases. For example, it recognises the present practice whereby the Director of Legal Aid does not impose a first charge on maintenance payment to children.

Mr President, with these remarks, and subject to the Committee Stage Amendments proposed by the Administration. I commend the Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995 to Honourable Members for approval.

End/Wednesday, June 14. 1995

Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995: committee stage *****

Following is the speech by the acting Chief Secretary, the Hon Michael Suen. at the committee stage of the Legal Aid (Amendment) Bill 1995. in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President.

1 move that the clauses specified be amended as set out in the paper circulated to Members.

The amendment to clause 2 seeks to expand the definition of "domestic proceedings", to include cases under the "Matrimonial Causes Ordinance (Cap 179)" and "the Guardianship of Minors Ordinance (Cap 13).

30

The amendment to clause 4 seeks to give the Director of Legal Aid the discretion to waive the financial eligibility limit in any civil case where an applicant has been granted a legal aid certificate in proceedings in which a breach of the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance (Cap 383) or an inconsistency with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as applied to Hong Kong is an issue.

The amendment to clause 6 is mainly technical in nature.

The amendment to clause 8 seeks to clarify some technical concerns expressed by the legal profession.

The amendment to clause 9 seeks to remove the potential criminality for people who breach confidentiality.

The amendment to clause 12 seeks to clarify how the Director of Legal Aid will apportion the contribution payable by a person aided under both the standard legal aid scheme and the Supplementary Legal Aid Scheme.

The amendment to clause 13(2)(a) is related to the amendment to clause 4. This also clarifies that applicants will not be subject to double merits tests.

The amendment to clause 13(2)(d) better defines the excepted proceedings and clarifies the term "derivatives of securities".

Mr President, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday. June 14, 1995

Amend clauses of Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill *****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Economic Services, Mrs Elizabeth Bosher, in committee stage amendments of the clauses of the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr Chairman.

I move that the clauses specified be amended as set out in the paper circulated to Members.

31

Members will recall that the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill is part of our on-going exercise to localise UK legislation applying to Hong Kong so that the existing system of laws will continue after 1997. The Bill will also consolidate existing Hong Kong legislation which regulates the employment and conditions of work of seafarers.

All but one of the proposed amendments are changes to the Chinese text, which would remove possible discrepancies in meaning between the two texts of the Bill.

The other is in respect of Clause 124 of the Bill which empowers the Seafarers' Authority, meaning the Director of Marine, to prescribe various forms. These forms, which will be prescribed to replace the current sets in use, are routine, administrative documents which enable the Seafarers' Authority to discharge his functions effectively. The existing forms are not subsidiary legislation. We intend to maintain this system in the Bill and the proposed amendment will make this clear.

Mr Chairman, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Amend schedule of Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill *****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Economic Services, Mrs Elizabeth Bosher. in the committee stage amendments of the schedule of the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr Chairman,

I move that the Schedule specified be amended as set out in the paper circulated to Members.

Schedule 2 to the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) Bill sets out the consequential amendments to various enactments required by the Bill. Since the Bill's introduction, we have identified additional provisions which also require minor consequential amendments to make them consistent with the Bill. Some of the consequential amendments have to be replaced because the authentic Chinese texts of the affected ordinances have been declared since the publication of the Bill.

Mr Chairman. I beg to move.

End/Wedncsday, June 14. 1995

32

Nuclear Material Bill: committee stage ♦ ♦ ♦ * ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Economic Services, Mrs Elizabeth Bosher, at the committee stage of the Nuclear Material (Liability for Carriage) Bill, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr Chairman.

I move that the clauses specified be amended as set out in the paper circulated to Members.

The purpose of the Nuclear Material (Liability for Carriage) Bill is to replace, through the enactment of local legislation, the relevant provisions of the United Kingdom's Nuclear Installation Act 1965, as applied to Hong Kong by three Orders in Council made between 1972 and 1986.

The purpose of the proposed amendments to clauses 4 and 8(2) of the Chinese text of the Bill is to reflect better the meaning of the words "incurred" and "jettisoned" in the corresponding clauses of the English text ol the Bill.

The proposed amendments to clause 16 of the Chinese text of the Bill are consequential to the authentication of the Chinese text of the Foreign Judgments (Restriction on Recognition and Enforcement) Ordinance which took place on 24 February 1995.

Mr Chairman. I beg to move.

End/Wcdncsday, June 14. 1995

33

Intimidating witnesses liable to be prosecuted: AG

*****

Those who try to intimidate witnesses or interfere with witnesses are liable to be prosecuted with the offence of attempting to pervert the course of public justice which carries a maximum penalty of seven years imprisonment, the Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, said in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday).

Replying a question raised by the Hon James To, Mr Mathews said the courts were also equipped with the power to punish those who refuse to give evidence.

He said: "Under section 21(4) of the Magistrates Ordinance, if a person comes before a magistrate as a witness but refuses to be sworn, or, having been sworn, refuses to answer questions put to him, he is liable to be imprisoned for a period of up to 12 months.

"Section 36 of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance confers a similar power on the High Court and District Court to punish such witnesses for contempt of court up to a maximum period of two years' imprisonment," he added.

Mr Mathews said the Government was making every effort to ensure that witnesses would be given adequate protection and assurance where necessary.

"The Police have in place a wide range of witness protection arrangements. A Police Central Witness Protection Unit has been set up to implement and co-ordinate these arrangements," he said.

In addition, the Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Bill 1995 now being studied by the Legislative Council contained proposals which would enable witnesses in fear to give evidence in all levels of court through live television link, Mr Mathews said.

The Attorney General said it was a civic duty of every citizen to give true and full evidence in legal proceedings.

"The Government has published posters and leaflets to assure the public of their rights as a witness and to give sensible and useful guidance to witnesses as to what is expected of them when giving evidence in court," he said.

There were also Announcements of Public Interest and television programmes like "Crime Watch" and "Police Magazine" to encourage witnesses to come forward to testify in court, he noted.

34

Mr Mathews said these arrangements provided a comprehensive range of measures designed to ensure that criminal cases were heard on their merits with witnesses willing and confident to give full testimony in court.

"In order to support the rule of law we also need the co-operation of the community to come forward, report offences and give evidence in court," he said.

Mr Mathews said in the past three years, there had been three out of 2,299 cases in the High Court where defendants were acquitted because key prosecution witnesses gave evidence at the trial which was contradictory to their earlier statements. All three were murder cases.

During the same period, there were 27 out of 4,481 District Court cases where the defendants were acquitted because key witnesses for the Prosecution either suffered a lapse of memory or gave evidence in court contradictory to their earlier statements and damaging to the Prosecution's case.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

"Forgetful" witnesses

*****

Following is a question by the Hon James To and a reply by the Attorney General, the Hon Jeremy Mathews, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the annual breakdown, by types of offences, of cases in the past three years which have resulted in the discontinuance of prosecution on account of the witnesses claiming to have forgotten details of the events or contradicting their testimony made previously; and

(b) what measures the Government will take to prevent cases as described in (a) above so as to ensure justice and safeguard the rule of law in the territory?

35

Reply:

Mr President,

In the past three years, there have been three cases in the High Court where defendants were acquitted because key prosecution witnesses gave evidence at the trial which was contradictory to their earlier statements. All three were murder cases.

During the same period, there were 27 District Court cases where the defendants were acquitted because key witnesses for the Prosecution either suffered a lapse of memory or gave evidence in court contradictory to their earlier statements and damaging to the Prosecution’s case. A breakdown of such cases by reference to the type of offences is shown at the table attached to this reply. We do not have statistics of such cases in the Magistrate’s Courts. To put these figures into context, during the past 3 years, there have been 2,299 cases in the High Court and 4,481 cases in the District Court.

As regards the second part of the question, the following arrangements are already in place:

(a) It is a civic duty of every citizen to give true and full evidence in legal proceedings. The Government has published posters and leaflets to assure the public of their rights as a witness and to give sensible and useful guidance to witnesses as to what is expected of them when giving evidence in court. There are also Announcements of Public Interest and television programmes like ’’Crime Watch” and "Police Magazine” to encourage witnesses to come forward to testify in court;

(b) The Government is making every effort to ensure that witnesses will be given adequate protection and assurance where necessary. The Police have in place a wide range of witness protection arrangements. A Police Central Witness Protection Unit has been set up to implement and coordinate these arrangements;

(c) Those who try to intimidate witnesses or interfere with witnesses are liable to be prosecuted, subject to the availability of evidence, with the offence of attempting to pervert the course of public justice which carries a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment; and

36

(d) The courts are equipped with the power to punish those who refuse to given evidence. Under section 21(4) of the Magistrates Ordinance, if a person comes before a magistrate as a witness but refuses to be sworn, or, having been sworn, refuses to answer questions put to him, he is liable to be imprisoned for a period of up to 12 months. Section 36 of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance confers a similar power on the High Court and District Court to punish such witnesses for contempt of court up to a maximum period of 2 years’ imprisonment.

Mr President, in addition, the Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Bill 1995 now being studied by this Council contains proposals which will enable witnesses in fear to give evidence in all levels of court through live television link. This will add to the existing arrangements I have just mentioned.

These arrangements provide a comprehensive range of measures designed to ensure that criminal cases are heard on their merits with witnesses willing and confident to give full testimony in court. In order to support the rule of law we also need the co-operation of the community to come forward, report offences and give evidence in court.


37

District Court_C;is£s

Types of Eailwe.of

Offences Prosecution Du.e_t.o_

Contradictory. Lapse of evidence Memory

Attempt to Pervert the 1

Course of Public Justice

Blackmail 2 1

Causing Grievous Bodily 1

Hann

Counselling and 1

Procuring Blackmail

Criminal Intimidation 1

False Imprisonment 1

Lending Money at an 2

Excessive Rate

Possession of identity card 1

relating to another person

Robbery 2

Trafficking in dangerous drugs 1

Unlawful Sexual Intercourse 1

with girls under 13

Wounding with intent 10 2

22 5

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

38

Sit-in protest outside NCNA *****

Following is a question by the Hon Frederick Fung Kin-kee and a reply by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

On the evening of 23 May, a political group petitioned the Xinhua News Agency (NCNA) for the release of a political dissident in China, but the police did not allow the group consisting of ten people to stage a sit-in at the entrance to NCNA. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council of:-

(a) the number of organisations allowed to stage sit- ins at the entrance to the NCNA, as well as the number of those prohibited from doing so, in the past year; and

(b) the criteria adopted by the police in determining whether sit-ins should be allowed to take place at the entrance to the NCNA?

Reply:

Mr President,

As regards the first part of the question, during the past twelve months, the Police have had to deal with 191 public gatherings outside NCNA. None of the organisations which took part in these gatherings were allowed to stage sit-ins at the entrance to NCNA. 1 lowever, on two occasions in the past year, demonstrators acted contrary to police advice and staged sit-ins at the entrance to NCNA. Aller repeated police advice and warnings, the demonstrators subsequently moved away from the main entrance to less obstructive locations, where they continued their demonstrations.

As regards the second part of the question, as a general rule, the Police do not allow petitioners to stage sit-ins at the entrance to the NCNA, because they would cause obstruction and inconvenience to other members of the public.

End/Wedncsday, June 14. 1995

39

Successful applicants under British Nationality Selection ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Leong Che-hung and a reply by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

In the light of the recent media report that some persons who have been successful with their applications for a British Passport under the British Nationality Selection Scheme have given up their British passports and instead applied for the British National (Overseas) passports, will the Administration inform this Council:

(a) of the actual number of such persons;

(b) of the actual number of those who have given up their certificates of registration as a British Citizen; and

(c) whether the Government will ensure that the quota of the Scheme thus released will be reallocated to those still on the waiting list until the total quota of 50,000 families have been exhausted?

Reply:

Mr President,

As regards the first part of the question, as the British passports issued to successful applicants under the British Nationality Selection Scheme are the same as those issued to all other British citizens, we cannot distinguish scheme beneficiaries from other British citizens who give up their British citizen passport. Therefore, we do not have statistics on the number of beneficiaries who have given up their British passports. However, we believe the number to be low.

As regards the second part of the question, so far, six successful applicants under the British Nationality Selection Scheme have renounced British citizenship. However, the places taken up by them cannot be re-allocated to other applicants, because, under the law, these persons are entitled to revoke their renunciation and to resume their British citizenship, provided they apply before 1997.

As regards the third part of the question, subject to the caveat concerning the small number of renunciations I have just mentioned, every step possible will be taken to ensure that all 50,000 places available under the scheme are taken up.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

40

Duty of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong *****

Following is a question by the Hon Chim Pui-chung and a reply by the Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

The recent incidents of non-compliance with the regulations of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (SEHK) by the chairmen and directors of certain listed companies concerning non-declaration of their criminal offence records have aroused public concern. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) what kind of an organisation is the SEHK;

(b) whether SEHK is empowered to formulate regulations which have a legally binding effect; and

(c) whether persons who do not comply with the regulations of SEHK are legally responsible for such non-compliance?

Answer:

(a) Mr President, The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (SEHK) is a company incorporated in Hong Kong which has the right to establish, operate and maintain a stock market in Hong Kong pursuant to section 27(1) of the Stock Exchanges Unification Ordinance (Cap. 361). Due to its unique role in our financial markets, the Stock Exchange has a duty to perform in the public interest. This is stipulated in section 27A of the Ordinance which requires the Exchange to ensure an orderly and fair market in securities trading through its facilities. In performing this duty, the Stock Exchange shall act in the interests of the public, in particular the investing public, and must ensure that such interests prevail where they are in conflict with any other interests that the Exchange is required to perform under any other law.

In the regulatory framework for securities trading, the Stock Exchange is a front line regulator responsible for the day-to-day monitoring of the operation of the Hong Kong stock market. The Securities and Futures Commission has a statutory function to be responsible for supervising and monitoring the activities of the Exchange and to promote and • develop self-regulation by the Exchange and other relevant bodies.

41

(b) The Listing Agreement between an issuer and the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited setting out the continuing obligations which the issuer undertakes to comply with as a condition of listing is a legally binding contract. Section 34(l)(a) of the Stock Exchange Unification Ordinance empowers the Exchange to make rules in respect of listing requirements. However, the regulations are not subsidiary legislation of the Ordinance and there are no penalties under Ordinance for contravention of the regulations. The regulations are enforced under the Listing Agreement which is a commercial contract.

(c) Persons who do not comply with the regulations of the Stock Exchange may be sanctioned under the rules and regulations of the Exchange. However, contravention of such regulations is a civil matter and not a criminal offence.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

New franchise for CMB ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Lee Wing-tat and a reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

■. j r. ।

It is learnt that the China Motor Bus Company Limited (CMB) has refused to negotiate with the Government its franchise and that the company has purchased expensive fuel oil from an oil company, both of which are to the detriment of the interests of passengers. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the present progress of the negotiation on the renewal of CMB's franchise?

(b) of the criteria adopted in determining whether CMB’s franchise should be renewed; and

(c) whether the Government will consider introducing measures to make the CMB management accountable to both this Council and the public; if so, what the details are?

42

Reply:

Mr President,

The China Motor Bus Company Limited’s franchise will expire on 31 August 1995. The Administration is prepared to award CMB a new franchise. This has been supported by the Transport Advisory Committee in principle. We have been negotiating the terms and conditions with CMB for several months and have now reached the final stages of this exercise. I expect to be able to put a recommendation to the Executive Council within the next few weeks.

Let me provide some basic facts: CMB now operates about 1000 buses on 133 routes and carries some 540,000 passengers per day. The Administration’s prime consideration is to ensure that this level of demand can be satisfied through the provision of an efficient bus service. In this respect, the main criterion in determining whether or not CMB should be awarded a new franchise is whether CMB can provide a standard of service which is acceptable.

Admittedly, there have been many complaints about CMB and its service. It is not for the Administration to defend the company but it is our responsibility to assess CMB's performance in a dispassionate manner.

The Administration's conclusion is that, whilst there is certainly room for CMB to further improve its overall performance there have nonetheless been improvements since its current franchise was granted in September 1993 when 26 routes were excised. Transport Department's surveys show that CMB has been able to meet the scheduled requirement. In short CMB at least deserves a pass mark and for that reason we are prepared to offer a new 3-year franchise to CMB which will comprise a reduced network of routes which we believe CMB can effectively manage.

Regarding accountability on the part of the CMB management, the measures now in place will be retained and further steps taken. At present the Transport Department closely monitors CMB's daily services and where deficiencies are found warning letters will be issued to require CMB to rectify the situation. Failure to comply will result in the imposition of severe financial penalties which have to be borne by their shareholders. These procedures follow the provisions laid down in the Public Bus Services Ordinance. As part of the new franchise conditions, we shall also make it a mandatory requirement for CMB to disclose certain financial and operational information. At present, the provision of such information is only on a voluntary basis.

Mr President, the Administration is satisfied that, all factors taken into account, the award of a new franchise to CMB is in the interests of the travelling public.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

43

On-the-Job Training Scheme *****

Following is a question by the Hon James To and a reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the On-the-Job Training Scheme, will the Government inform this Council of the following :

(a) whether it will promote the Scheme to a larger number of establishments in the private sector so as to reduce the number of the unemployed in the territory;

(b) the current number of corporate participants in the Scheme; the respective percentages of participants from the service sector and the manufacturing sector out of the total number of participants, as well as the respective numbers of trainees involved; and

(c) the number of trainees who will stay on their jobs after completing the three-month on-the-job training; and whether the three-month training period is sufficient; if not. whether the training period will be extended?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) The Employees Retraining Board (ERB) and the Labour Department have been actively promoting the On-the-Job Training (OJT) Scheme through their liaison networks with major employers' associations and individual employers. Over 20.000 OJT pamphlets have been sent by the ERB to employers informing them of the Scheme. The ERB training bodies also contact employers in their locality to promote the OJT Scheme and to assist in the placements of retrainees. The ERB reviews such promotion efforts regularly and will step up publicity where necessary. In the coming months, the government will conduct a more detailed survey on job vacancies. The information will help the ERB to target the retraining at the occupational groups with high vacancy rates and those jobs that would benefit more through OJT rather than the more traditional classroom studies.

44

(b) By the end of May 1995, 1,314 firms have joined the OJT Scheme. Of this total, 64% are from the service sector and 22% are from the manufacturing sector. The number of trainees currently undergoing OJT are 1803 in the service sector and 363 in the manufacturing sector.

(c) Although we do not keep statistics on the number of OJT participants who remain in employment after completing 3 months' training, the feedback from individual employers indicated that the majority of participants have stayed on their jobs. Furthermore, the finding of an independent study commissioned by ERB indicated that the turnover rate of ERB trainees has been relatively lower than that of other employees.

A large proportion of the jobs under this scheme are general clerical jobs which do not require a high level of skill. The duration of three months for the OJT Scheme is therefore considered adequate. However, if there are other job types suitable for the OJT scheme which require longer training, the ERB will consider whether the duration should be extended in order to enhance the effectiveness of the Scheme.

End/Wednesday. June 14, 1995

Increase of water bills due to sewage charge

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Howard Young and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

In view of the concern expressed by restaurants and hotels regarding the substantial increase in their water bills because of the recently introduced sewage charge, will the Government inform this Council of the following:

(a) What measures restaurants and hotels can take to reduce such charges;

(b) What the Government has done to publicise the measures mentioned in

(a) above to the establishments concerned; and

45

(c) What assistance and advice can such establishments expect from the relevant departments on water conservation or sewage treatment?

Reply:

Mr President,

It may be useful to first clear up some degree of confusion regarding water charges and sewage charges which are different utility charges. Water is charged at $4.58 per cubic meter whilst the general sewage charge is $1.20 per cubic meter. The general sewage charge, which is paid by those who discharge effluent into the public sewerage system, is billed together with the water charge by the Water Supplies Department. In addition, a Trade Effluent Surcharge, which is paid by those trades and industries whose strength of effluent is higher than that for domestic discharges, is billed separately by the Drainage Services Department. The trades and industries who are subject to this surcharge, and the respective rates of the surcharge, are specified by the Sewage Services (Trade Effluent Surcharge) Regulation. The Sewage Charge and Trade Effluent Surcharge are based on the Polluter Pays Principle whereby the more one pollutes, the more one pays for its treatment.

(a) The following measures will help reduce sewage charges - (i) install onsite treatment facilities to reduce the strength of effluent: a less polluted discharge as measured by its COD (Chemical Oxygen Demand) would reduce sewage charges; (ii) reduce the volume of discharge by good housekeeping methods to conserve water; and (iii) proper installation and maintenance of grease traps.

(b) The Government has publicised the measures mentioned in (a) above via a booklet on the proper design, installation and maintenance of grease traps (published and distributed by the Environmental Protection Department in 1993, shortly to be reprinted), the provision of materials and briefings by the Drainage Services Department to all their customers to explore measures to take to reduce the pollution level of restaurant and hotel effluent, and through Municipal Council health inspectors when they visit restaurants and hotels.

(c) Apart from disseminating the information described above, assistance are provided by the Trading Fund Branch of the Drainage Services Department on information regarding in-house measures for waste water treatment; by the Environmental Protection Department’s Local Control Offices on advice on sewage treatment measures; and by the Water Supplies Department on water conservation measures. In addition, the Planning, Environment and Lands Branch has set up a liaison group with representatives of restaurateurs to discuss their concerns.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

46

Redevelopment of Kwun Tong bus depot *****

Following is a question by the Hon Fred Li Wah-ming and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

It is learnt that the Kowloon Motor Bus Company Limited (KMB) is negotiating with the Government the redevelopment plan of its depot in How Ming Street, Kwun Tong, and that the KMB intends to rent the vacant site in the neighbourhood of Shun Lee Estate for use as its temporary depot during the redevelopment period. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of bus parking spaces the KMB plans to provide in the redeveloped How Ming Street depot, and what is the number of parking spaces which the Government requires the KMB to provide;

(b) whether the Government intends to carry out an environmental assessment to examine if the site near Shun Lee Estate is suitable for constructing a temporary depot before deciding whether the site should be leased; if not, why not; and

(c) whether the Government will consult the Kwun Tong District Board and local residents about leasing the site near Shun Lee Estate to the KMB for use as a temporary depot; if so, when such consultation will take place; if not, why not?

Answer: . , , . -i.

Mr President,

(a) KMB's proposed re-development is still being considered by the Government. In this connection, KMB has also applied for a short term tenancy near Shun Lee Estate to facilitate its redevelopment project. However, the release of this temporary site to KMB will be considered in conjunction with the redevelopment proposal. The existing depot provides 159 bus parking spaces, mainly for parking 2-axle double deck buses. According to the proposal, the new development will provide 215 bus parking spaces, including 146 for 3-axle double deck buses, 63 for medium coaches and 6 for small coaches. The proposed provision will meet the Government's requirement for KMB's overnight bus parking in East Kowloon.

47

(b) Government does not intend to carry out a full environmental impact assessment covering the proposed temporary site near Shun Lee Estate because the site is quite far away (about 180 meters) from residential areas. The two adjoining users are a playground, and a temporary housing area which will shortly be cleared for the proposed Fire Service Recreational Club. Environmental Protection Department has however been consulted, ahd in the event that the tenancy to KMB does proceed, adequate environmental safeguards will be included into the tenancy conditions.

(c) Kwun Tong District Office has sought the preliminary views of individual District Board members and the Area Committee. They have raised no objection to the proposed tenancy subject to the provision of a physical partition to protect users of the adjoining playground.

End/Wednesday. June 14. 1995

Security services in public housing estates *****

Following is a question by Dr the Hon fang Siu-tong and a written reply by the Secretary for Housing. Mr Dominic Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

The Housing Authority has decided to provide entrance grilles, closed-circuit TVs and 24-hour security services in most public housing estates. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether :

(a) the Housing Authority will provide round-the-clock security services in public housing blocks where iron grilles have not yet been installed at the entrances: and

(b) the Housing Authority has any plan to provide entrance grilles, closed-circuit TVs and round-the-clock security services in all public housing blocks; if so, when the work is expected to be completed?

48

Answer:

Mr President,

The Housing Authority has a security improvement programme for different types of public rental housing blocks. All new and existing Harmony and Trident blocks will be provided with security devices including gates at all entrances, doorphones and closed circuit television (CCTV) inside lifts and at the main entrance. A guard will also be provided at the main entrance of each block round the clock. For blocks of other designs, CCTV will be installed inside lifts, with link-up to a control room for central monitoring by security guards.

Under the programme, about 1 000 rental blocks, other than blocks to be redeveloped shortly or without lifts, will be provided with security devices by the end of 1997 in phases. Installation work is now in progress.

Given the open environment in public housing blocks where gates have not yet been installed at the entrances, the Housing Authority will not provide round-the-clock security service as it will involve several thousand security guards and will not be cost-effective. Meanwhile, the Housing Authority has deployed additional security guards to patrol in estates where crime rates arc relatively high.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Foreign exchange investors protection *****

Following is a question by the Hon Frederick Fung Kin-kce and a written reply by the Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) what measures are currently adopted by the Securities and Futures Commission to control foreign exchange investment companies which have not been issued with licences in the territory; and

49

(b)

Answer:

(a)

what protection is provided to investors in the event of the closure of such companies due to operational problems?

Under the Leveraged Foreign Exchange Trading Ordinance (Cap. 451) (LFETO), it is an offence for any person to carry on a business of leveraged foreign exchange trading without a licence. The maximum penalty on conviction for such an offence is $10 million and 7 years’ imprisonment.

Since the coming into force of the LFETO on 1 October 1994, there have been no complaints from the public of unlicensed leveraged foreign exchange trading. Nevertheless, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has committed substantial resources to preventing unlicensed activity. 23 addresses which were identified as possible locations where unlicensed activity might be occurring were visited by SFC staff but no unlicensed activity has been detected.

Separately, there has been one successful prosecution of a company which held itself out as carrying on a business of leveraged foreign exchange trading whilst unlicensed. The company was fined $60,000 and ordered to pay SFC’s costs of $30,495.

In two other cases, search warrants were executed. The first case involved a securities dealer who was suspected to have offered facilities to his clients to trade foreign exchange on a leveraged basis. The other case involved the issue of a pamphlet to a solicitor which offered a scheme involving investment in foreign exchange in a manner which could infringe the LFETO. Enquiries into both these cases are continuing.

SFC will continue to take vigorous action against unlicensed leveraged foreign exchange traders to protect investors. However, a distinction should be drawn between unlicensed companies operating illegally and those which have applied for a licence under the transitional provisions of the LFETO. These latter companies, although legally unlicensed, are allowed to continue trading until their applications have been determined. In order to apply for a licence, these companies are required to have a minimum $30 million capital, ab initio, but they do not have to comply with the Financial Resources Rules, the Conduct of Business Rules and the Accounts and Audit Rules until they are licensed.

50

In actual practice, however, such companies by and large tend to respect the regulatory requirements pending approval of their licences, as they are not in a position to forecast when a licence may be issued but will have to meet these rules once a licence is approved.

For this reason, since the introduction of the Ordinance, the number of complaints against'the industry has fallen dramatically. The nature of the complaints has also changed - from essentially fraud related complaints prior to the introduction of the legislation to essentially trade dispute related complaints since the introduction.

In the event of an application being rejected, the LFETO obliges the company to cease trading within 14 days and provides SFC with the necessary powers to ensure that investors' positions are closed out in an orderly manner and that their assets are protected.

(b) Apart from the normal civil remedies, there is no protection for clients of an unlicensed leveraged foreign exchange trader in the event of a closure.

While the legal position is largely the same in respect of licensed leveraged foreign exchange companies, the combination of the capital requirements under the financial resources rules and the segregation of client assets requirements under the conduct rules which licensed companies are required to respect, is likely to afford an appropriate level of protection of client assets should a licensed company go into liquidation.

For this reason, in addition to its enforcement efforts, SFC has repeatedly urged investors to ensure that they deal only with leveraged foreign exchange companies which are authorised to conduct such activities. To assist investors, SFC has established a hotline service to advise whether the companies they are dealing with are indeed authorised.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

51

Prisoners' wages ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Tam Yiu-chung and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council of the system adopted to adjust the wages received by the prisoners for their work and the prices of the canteen items they are permitted to purchase during imprisonment; and whether the Government will consider adjusting the wages of the prisoners and the prices of the canteen items simultaneously; if not, why not?

Reply:

Mr President:

The tender for the supply of canteen items is renewed once a year, in October. When the result of the tender is known, the prices of canteen items can be fixed; prison wages are then adjusted correspondingly in order to maintain prisoners' purchasing power.

Prisoners' wages may also be adjusted in line with increases in the prices of some canteen items which are dutiable items. This typically happens in March each year, at the time of the budget, but may exceptionally happen at other times of the year.

All adjustments in prisoners' wages are made at the same time as increases in canteen prices.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

52

Land use in industrial estates * ♦ ♦ * ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Huang Chen-ha and a written reply by the Secretary for Trade and Industry, Mr T H Chau, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the land use in industrial estates, will the Government inform this

Council:

(a) how many hectares of land in the industrial estates at Tai Po, Yuen Long and Tseung Kwan O are now available for leasing respectively;

(b) how many hectares of land were leased, and at what prices, in each of the industrial estates last year and in the first quarter of this year;

(c) whether the joint applications made recently by a number of pharmaceutical factories, as well as a number of electroplating factories, for the grant of land in the industrial estates reflect that there is demand for industrial land among the medium-sized and small enterprises; if so, whether the Hong Kong Industrial Estates Corporation will review its existing policy on the leasing of land in industrial estates with a view to meeting the growing demand of the medium-sized and small enterprises; and

(d) when the Hong Kong Industrial Estates Corporation will decide on the joint applications for the grant of land made by the pharmaceutical and electroplating factories; what factors will be taken into consideration in making the decision and whether the size of the factories is a decisive one?

Answer:

(a) The Hong Kong Industrial Estates Corporation (HKIEC) presently has 4.3 hectares available for leasing at its estate in Tai Po, 7.5 hectares in Yuen Long, and 5.8 hectares in Tseung Kwan O.

53

(b) The HKIEC's figures are collated on the basis of the financial, rather than the calendar year. During the year ending 31 March 1994, 1.34 hectares was granted at Tai Po, 4.75 hectares at Yuen Long, and 3.37 hectares at Tseung Kwan O. Since 1 April 1995, no land has been leased at Tai Po or Yuen Long, but 1.1 hectares has been leased at Tseung Kwan O, and a further 4.08 hectares has been offered to applicants. The land premiums per square metre are as follows : $2,500 at Tai Po ($2,200 up to 31 March 1994), $2,000 at Yuen Long ($1,800), and $2,400 and $3,000 respectively for inland and waterfront sites at Tseung Kwan O ($2,100 and $2,650).

(c) As only two groups of small and medium-sized enterprises have expressed interest in leasing land from the HK1EC, it is not possible to say whether this reflects a more general demand for industrial land from such enterprises. It is likely that only enterprises which cannot operate in conventional industrial buildings would seek land, because of the additional financial commitment which development entails.

The HKIEC's existing policy already allows it to consider joint applications from multiple users, including small and medium-sized enterprises.

(d) A group of pharmaceutical companies has submitted a joint application, and detailed discussions are taking place. It is not possible to say when these will be concluded. Preliminary discussions have also taken place with a group of electroplating companies, although no application has been received to date.

All applicants must show that they meet the HKIEC's basic criteria, which are that applicants' activities must be of a nature which cannot effectively be carried out in an ordinary multi-storey building, they must not be classified as an offensive trade, and the primary activity must not be storage or warehousing. Practical considerations, such as the financial ability of joint applicants to complete the project, and how they would replace occupants of a multi- user building who vacate their premises, will also be taken into account.

End/Wednesday. June 14. 1995

54

District officers’ attendance at functions

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Zachary Wong and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Home Affairs, Mr Joseph Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the attendance of District Officers at various kinds of ceremonies, will the Government inform this Council:

of the respective number of ceremonies attended by each of the District Officers last year, together with a breakdown by month of the number of attendance and the time spent thereof by each officer;

of the criteria adopted by the District Officers in deciding whether to attend such ceremonies or not; and

how District Officers can avoid causing disruption to other areas of their work as a result of their frequent attendance at ceremonial functions?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) No statistics pertaining to attendance of District Officers at various kinds of functions have been kept. As a rough indication, District Officers attend an average of 4 to 5 functions each month and spend between one to two hours at each function.

(b) Attendance by District Officers at functions is an indication of Government support. In deciding whether or not to attend a particular function. District Officers generally take into account factors such as the purpose of the occasion, the status of the organisation, and whether their attendance would contribute positively to Government's community building efforts.

(c) As invitations to functions arc received well in advance. District Officers are able to plan their work schedule around these functions. Also, many of the functions arc held outside office hours.

End/Wednesday, June 14. 1995

55

Stench emission from Tin Shui Wai stormwater sewer *****

Following is a question by Dr the Hon l ang Siu-tong and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Residents of Kingswood Villas in fin Shui Wai. especially those living in Tin Oi Court, have been suffering from the stench emitted from the nearby stormwater sewer. In connection, will the Government inform this Council of:

(a) The reasons for the emission of stench from the stormwater sewer despite the closing down of the pig rearing industry; and

(b) The measures and the time frame for cleaning up the polluted sewer so that residents will no longer have to suffer from the stench?

Reply :

Mr President.

(a) The odour in the stormwater channel near Tin Oi Court is the result of water pollution from the indiscriminate dumping of waste, particularly livestock waste, upstream. There is also a minor problem with domestic sewage discharges.

(b) A number of measures are being implemented to alleviate the problem. Eighteen Low Flow Interceptors (LFI), commissioned in 1994. intercept the polluted base flow during the dry season and divert it to the public sewerage system for proper treatment and disposal. An inflatable dam assists in the downstream dispersal of the pollutants in the channel. A full scale desilting of the channel, completed in January 1995, removed polluting material deposited, thus removing odour and improving flows. The Deep Bay area, which covers the Tin Shui Wai catchments, was declared a Water Control Zone in December 1991; factories in Kiu Tau Wai are now required to connect their industrial effluents into the public sewers newly completed. This has resulted in diverting a total flow of over 2,000 cubic meters per day and a pollution load equivalent to about 10,000 people away from the channel. The small number of domestic sewage discharges into the channel will also be removed when new sewers are provided under Stage 2 of the Yuen Long and Kam I in Sewage Master Plan in mid 1999. Finally, livestock waste, the main cause of odour problem in the channel, will be controlled under the Livestock Waste Control Scheme when controls for the Tin Shui Wai catchments are implemented in mid-1996.

End/Wedncsday, June 14. 1995

56

Length of time for retrained workers to find jobs * * ♦ * *

Following is a question by Dr the Hon David Li Kwok-po and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

i

Question:

The unemployment rate has increased in the recent months against the background of a faster than expected growth in the territory's labour force. The growth rate of the labour force in 1994 was 3.5%, which was the highest recorded in the last three years. It has been suggested that one of the reasons for this rapid growth in labour force is that most retrained workers take a long time to find a job. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council how long retrained workers take on average to find a job after they have received retraining under the Employees Retraining Scheme?

Reply:

Mr President.

Most of the participants of the retraining programmes who wish to acquire new skills with a view to taking up employment are already unemployed persons. They are by statistical definition already part of our labour force. The length of time they need to find a job after retraining has therefore no impact on both the growth rate of our labour force and the overall unemployment figure.

According to the statistics gathered by the Employees Retraining Board, the average time for a retrainee who is an active job seeker to secure a job after retraining ranges from one to four weeks. As far as those retrainees who seek employment assistance at the Local Employment Service of the Labour Department are concerned, about 60% are able to find jobs within one month after registration.

End/Wedncsday, June 14, 1995

57

Fund-raising activities by hospitals ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Michael Ho and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) the system adopted by various hospitals under the management of the Hospital Authority (HA) in determining the use of funds raised in fund-raising activities; and

(b) a detailed breakdown showing how each HA hospital allocated and spent the funds raised in last year's fund-raising activities?

Reply:

Mr President,

The use of donations generated from fund-raising activities organised by individual hospitals is determined by the Hospital Governing Committees or charitable trusts set up for this purpose. A breakdown showing the donations received by different public hospitals in 1994/95 and their way of disbursement is at Annex.

Some charitable organisations are engaged in a wide spectrum of community services not confined to those provided by public hospitals. As a historical practice, the governing boards of these organisations including the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, Yan Chai Hospital and Pok Oi Hospital may determine and allocate the use of donations obtained from fund-raising activities. Government has no intention to interfere with this established arrangement.

** T

The Hospital Authority Board will review on a regular basis the philosophies, directions and parameters for fund-raising activities as part of its overall strategy on community involvement.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

Annex

Disbursement of Funds Generated

From Fund Raising Activities in 1994/95

Queen Mary Hospital Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital Queen Elizabeth Hospital Princess Margaret Hospital Prince of Wales Hospital Kwai Chung Hospital Tuen Mun Hospital

Amount of donations obtained from fund-raising activities $7.5 million $2.7 million $12,000 $207,480 $6,675 million $256,000 $300,000

Use of donations obtained from fund-raising activities Patient education and screening for high-risk cancer patients Patient Resource Centre. Staff Welfare Fund. Patient Service Centre Pending formation of a charity trust Patient Resource Centre Hospital Open Day

(95061416)

59

Foreign domestic helpers as drivers ♦ * * ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Tam Yiu-chung and a written replied by the acting Secretary for Security, Mr Ken Woodhouse, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government review the Immigration Ordinance and other related ordinances with a view to clearly stipulating that foreign domestic helpers are prohibited from taking up employment as drivers, so that the employment opportunities of local drivers will not be affected?

Reply:

Mr President,

Foreign domestic helpers are admitted for employment with specific employers under a standard employment contract. Domestic duties are defined in the Explanatory Notes of the employment contract to include domestic cooking, household chores, baby-sitting and child minding, but this is not an exclusive definition.

Under the present arrangements, whether foreign domestic helpers are allowed to perform driving duties depends on whether the driving duty is incidental to, or forms part of, the foreign domestic helper's domestic duties. In other words, it has to depend on the context and circumstances in which the duties are performed. Therefore, each case is considered on its merits. At present, we have no plans to review the Immigration Ordinance, or other Ordinances, in relation to this matter.

End/Wednesday. June 14, 1995

60

Works in Land Development Corporation sites continue ♦ * * ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Chim Pui-chung and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the suspension of works on some Land Development Corporation sites, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) whether those development projects which have been approved by the Town Planning Board will be cancelled due to the suspension of works on those sites;

(b) whether it will consider allowing the owners to redevelop their own properties; and

(c) if the answer to (b) is in the negative, whether those owners can demand compensation on the ground that their properties cannot be redeveloped; if not, why not ?

Answer:

Mr President,

The Land Development Corporation is currently redeveloping five sites. Works have not been suspended on any of these sites. The Corporation has re-confirmed its intention to complete the developments as early as possible.

In the light of the above,, we have no comment on parts (a), (b) and (c) of this question.

End/Wednesday. June 14, 1995

61

Remedies for unemployment problem ft ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Hui Yin-fat and a written reply by the acting Financial Secretary, the Hon T H Chau, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the unemployment problem caused by the structural transformation of the territory's economy, will the Government inform this Council of the following :

(a) whether, taking into account the economic restructuring and the ups and downs of different industries, the Government has formulated development strategies to deal with problems arising in the course of such restructuring; and whether the Government has come to grips with the present situation; and if so, why the Government has not yet adopted appropriate preventive and remedial measures;

(b) whether the concept and mode of training under the Employees Retraining Scheme as well as the source of income of the Employees Retraining Fund will be reviewed, so that the Scheme may be changed to one which will enhance community education for adults, providing occupational training to employees in various industries and help employees to become more flexible and adaptive in changing over to other occupations in future; and

(c) whether it has any plan to encourage employers in the manufacturing sector to place more emphasis on human resources investment locally, so as to remove the mentality of short-term investment and solve the problem in recruiting skilled labour?

62

Answer:

(a) The Government's economic policy is to allow market forces to determine the pace and direction of economic development, while providing an environment that is as friendly and as supportive to business as possible. This policy has enabled rapid and large-scale restructuring of the economy to take place with remarkably little impact upon employment. During restructuring, some impact upon employment is inevitable, given the mismatch between the skills demanded by employers, and those offered by employees. Since the scale and speed of the process depends upon market forces, it is not possible to predict in advance precisely what the impact will be. To mitigate the effects of unemployment upon those displaced from their jobs, the Government operates the Employees Retraining Scheme, to enable displaced workers to retrain for other jobs.

(b) The primary objective of the Employees Retraining Scheme is to provide retraining courses to help those displaced by the economic restructuring process to re-enter the workforce. To this end, the Employees Retraining Board (ERB) provides training in both job-related technical skills and general techniques for adapting to new job requirements. On ' the other hand, the adult education programme, which is coordinated by the Education Department, provides general educational opportunities for adults who may have missed the opportunity to receive formal education.

The ERB is funded by a specific levy imposed on employers of imported workers, which is solely designated to finance the Scheme set up in accordance with the Employees Retraining Ordinance. It is not appropriate to expand the role of the ERB and the ambit of this levy to cover adult education and other purposes which are already provided and funded separately. ' , j„

' 1

(c) The Government already operates a number of schemes which are intended to encourage manufacturers to upgrade the skills of their workforce. These include the New Technology Training Scheme, which offers matching grants to employers training staff in new technologies, the Engineering Graduate Training Scheme which subsidise employers who provide graduate engineers with the training needed to meet the requirements of the Hong Kong Institute of Engineers or similar professional bodies, and the Employees Retraining Programme, under which employers are offered subsidies to retrain people in skills for which there is unfulfilled demand.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

63

>U’ .1

Equal status of Chinese and English under language law ♦ * * * *

Following is a question by the Hon Cheung Man-kwong and a written reply by the acting Chief Secretary, the Hon Michael Suen, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding section 3(2) of the Official Languages Ordinance which stipulates that both English and Chinese possess equal status and enjoy equality of use, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of ordinances requiring that documents should be set out or submitted to the authorities concerned in English, together with the titles and summaries of the contents of such ordinances, excluding those ordinances listed in the Chief Secretary's reply to a question regarding the measures to implement the provisions in section 3(2) of the Official Languages Ordinance at the Council sitting on 16 November 1994, and

(b) whether a schedule will be drawn up for all the ordinances stated in (a) above to be amended in stages before 1 July 1997, so that their provisions will accord with the spirit of section 3(2) of the Official Languages Ordinance; if so, what the details are; if not, why not; and whether the Government has considered the effect of non- compliance with Article 9 of the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in respect of those ordinances which have not been amended?

Answer:

Mr President,

(a) The Ordinances listed in the Chief Secretary's reply on 16 November 1994 related to documents which were required to be submitted in English only. There are also a number of Ordinances which require documents to be set out or submitted to the authorities concerned in English as well as Chinese. These are listed in the Annex.

64

(b) A review, of all ordinances is being undertaken by a unit in the Legal Department to ascertain whether amendments to these ordinances could be introduced to provide for bilingualism in the preparation of the documents involved. The Government is fully aware of the need for consistency between Hong Kong Laws and the Basic Law, and the Chinese side is being consulted on proposed amendments to the laws where necessary.

Annex

Landlord and Tenant (Consolidation) Ordinance Cap. 7

' ‘ ’A’ • •4 -f ... . .

Section 47(1) The forms in the Second Schedule are prescribed for use under this Part and shall in each case be accompanied by a translation thereof in the Chinese language.

Boilers and Pressure Vessels Ordinance Cap, 56 ’ •• •’ • .

Section 15(2) Where a copy of a document referred to in subsection (1) is not written in the English or Chinese language, it shall be accompanied by an English translation.

Births and Deaths Registration Ordinance Cap, 174

Section 4(3) ...Entries of births and deaths shall, in the case of non-Chinese, be in the English language and, in the case of Chinese shall be both in the English and the Chinese languages.

Matrimonial Causes Rules Cap, 179 sub, leg. A

Rule 40(2) Where a document produced by virtue of paragraph (1) is not in English it shall, unless otherwise directed, be accompanied by a translation certified by a notary public or authenticated by affidavit or affirmation.

65

Rule 109(3)(b)

... if the petition is to be served.and there is reasonable ground

for believing that the person to be served does not understand English, the petition shall be accompanied by a translation.in

the official language of the country in which service is to be effected...

Commodities Trading Ordinance Cap, 250

Section 45(2) The records referred to in subsection (1) shall be kept -

(a) in writing in the English language; or

(b) in such a manner as to enable them to be readily accessible and readily converted into written form in the English language.

[The records referred to in subsection (1) are those records to be kept by a dealer which will sufficiently explain the transactions, and reflect the financial position, of the business of trading in commodity futures contracts carried on by the dealer and will enable true and fair profit and loss accounts and balance sheets to be prepared from time to time.]

Housing Ordinance Cap, 283

Section 35

If any dispute arises in respect of any difference between the English version and the Chinese version of any lease, assignment, agreement, deed of mutual covenant, letter, notice or other documents required, granted, issued or made by. under or for the purposes of this Ordinance, the English version shall prevail.

Adoption Rules Cap. 290 sub, leg, A

Rule 2(3)

In any discrepancy between the English and the Chinese version of any matter or in any form, the English version shall prevail.

66

Securities Ordinance Cap. 333

Section 83

The records referred to in subsection (I) shall be kept -

(a) in writing in the English language: or

(b) in such a manner as to enable them to be readily accessible and readily converted into written form in the English language.

[The records referred to in subsection (1) are those records to be kept by a dealer which will sufficiently explain the transactions, and reflect the financial position, of the business of trading in securities carried on by the dealer and will enable true and fair profit and loss accounts and balance sheets to be prepared from time to time.]

Demolished Buildings (Re-development of Sites) Ordinance Cap. .337

Section 7(1)

Where a re-development notice has been served in respect of any property, there shall be published in the Gazette and (with a translation in Chinese) affixed to the property.

End/Wednesday, June 14, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Thursday, June 15,1995

Contents Page No,

Transcript of the Governor's media session............................... 1

Baroness Dunn retires from ExCo.......................................... 6

Baroness Dunn's statement................................................ 6

Civil service rules on private sector employment......................... 8

Unemployment and underemployment statistics............................. 10

Employment services available to job-seekers......................... 11

Flags finally lowered on British Military Hospital...................... 12

Voluntary Energy Efficiency Labelling Scheme introduced................. 13

11,668 agreements lodged with Land Registry in May...................... 15

Sex education course for secondary teachers............................. 15

Beat drugs course for teachers.......................................... 16

21 -Gun salute to mark the Queen's birthday............................. 17

Public reminded not to bring back endangered species.................... 17

Tung Wah Group of Hospitals directors visit SWD...................... 18

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations.................... 19

Transcript of the Governor's media session ♦ * * * ♦

The following is a transcript of the media session by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, after visiting the Labour Department's Local Employment Service Centre in Tsuen Wan today (Thursday):

Governor: Good afternoon. I'm delighted to have had the opportunity this afternoon of seeing some of the services provided by our local employment services in Hong Kong. As you know, we're extremely keen, as part of our Job Creation Programme, to take as active measures as we can in the labour market. We are developing our Job-Matching Programme and I've been pleased to see that this afternoon. But I've also been particularly pleased to see the special services that are being provided both for those with a disability and for those who may be interested in working on the Airport Core Projects. So the placement service which is provided for the ACP is another of our important programmes.

Obviously, while we continue to develop these labour market programmes we are also continuing the drive to deal with illegal employment. We've had a sweep right through the territory against illegal employers and employees this week which has led to a number of arrests. And we are also continuing our review of the Labour Importation Scheme which I hope we'll be able to conclude in the early autumn so that we can make decisions in good time with employers and employees representatives in the interests of Hong Kong and in the interests of the workforce of Hong Kong. We want, at the end of the day, to come up with measures which ensure that Hong Kong remains a competitive economy but a competitive economy in which people who seek work are able to find it, because a job is one of the keys to a good and prosperous life.

Question: Governor, what do you feel about Lydia Dunn's resignation? Do you feel bad?

Governor: I think she's making a statement at 4 o'clock and therefore it's rather difficult for me to comment. Isn't it?

Question: But how do you feel about that? Your personal feelings.

Governor: You haven't heard what I said. But if you don't use it until after she's made a statement, I may answer your question.

2

Baroness Dunn has made a decision that she will be leaving Hong Kong for business and personal reasons which I'm sure she'll be explaining when she makes her own statement later on this afternoon. I'm only commenting because it's already been widely reported in the newspapers. It must, I imagine, have been a difficult decision for her to make. She's made a tremendous contribution to the community. She's been one of my closes advisers just as she was one of my predecessor's closest advisers, so I will miss her loyal advice because she has been involved in all the big decisions that I've taken since I've been in Hong Kong, and has contributed to them and supported them very loyally. I'm sure that she will continue to be a champion of Hong Kong in the House of Lords. She has already made a considerable mark there and I'm she will continue to do so.

Question: So have you decided who will take her place? Present ExCo members or new ExCo members?

a Governor: No, I haven't. I won't be taking any decisions about the Executive Council and its membership until the autumn. And we've got an extremely good Executive Council, full of very talented people representing, I think, all shades of opinion in Hong Kong, so I have a genuine and general cross-section of advice about the difficult issues that the Government has to consider.

Question: So the Senior ExCo Member will leave until the coming autumn?

Governor: I won't make any decisions about ExCo until late September early October.

Question: Mr Patten, there is a report saying that unemployment rates have ... to 2.9 per cent... How do you interpret that? ,

Governor: I think that it's very dangerous for people to make generalisations about one month's figures, either when the figures look better or when the figures look worst. So just as I would think it was unwise to make great claims if the figures had moved in the other direction, I don't think we should read too much into one month's figures which show very small improvement. The truth of the matter is, we do have difficulties in the labour market in Hong Kong, we do have employment problems, even if this month's figures are a bit better than last month's, and we have to tackle those problems by the sort of measures that we've already announced and by others that we will bring forward, not least as a result of our review of the Labour Importation Scheme. . k,

■ . i > ' ’ 'fii-' -X ’

. . . u,>. i-.y -r- £

3

1 think that in an economy as sophisticated as Hong Kong's, it is very important for us to make sure that we have flexible programmes to match the unemployed with vacancies, and that we have flexible and comprehensive programmes not just for training people but for retraining people to teach them new skills as well. If we can do that and retain our overall approach to economic policy, with prudent spending, low taxes, international confidence in our economy and our prospects, then those will be the best ways of making sure that all the people who are here at the local employment service today can get jobs - good jobs, well-paid jobs, jobs that will last.

Question: How about the shark ... in Sai Kung, is there any measure to tackle it?

Governor: I think that the first thing to be said is that everybody should heed the advice they have been given and avoid swimming off the Sai Kung coast in the next days and weeks. The Regional Council have of course taken additional measures, we are stepping up patrols, they are looking at the introduction of new anti-shark nets on some of the beaches which they manage. But for the time being, 1 think the sensible advice that people should heed is to swim in pools, not in the sea. We didn't have problems last year but we had problems the year before as well in a similar area and ! think that people should listen to the advice which is given by the experts. Of course we can do more to protect some of our beaches but until that is done then I think that the sensible thing for people to do is to consider the implications of swimming in conceivably dangerous waters, the implications not only for their own well-being and lives but for their families too.

Question: Do you support the idea of bringing in experts from Australia or Hawaii who understand sharks to... why they are coming in?

Governor: I think there is quite a lot of expertise here in Hong Kong. We have, for example, one of—

Question: ...claimed to be experts.

Governor: 1 think we have one of the best marine biology departments at Hong Kong University and while of course we can consult others and seek advice from elsewhere, I don't think there is going to be a magic solution. I have read in your papers all sorts of speculation which seemed quite sensible about why there may have been these sharks off our shores and why there may have been these attacks. Whatever the speculation, we first of all clearly have to take some additional measures to protect our beaches. But secondly, people have to behave sensibly. One reason why there have, I think, been fewer fatalities from swimming accidents with sharks in Australia in recent years is that people are much more careful and listen to the advice that they are given by the experts much more readily. I'm sorry that it sometimes needs accidents to make people listen to the advice which they are given about their own safety. I very much hope that everybody will listen to the advice that is now being given and that there won't be any more fatal accidents.

4

Question: Why do the Government don't take any action in Li Kwan Ha's case?

Governor: We've followed the advice of the Advisory Committee, the Lobo Commission, and I think they have given sensible advice which we are following. First of all, as far as the former Police Commissioner is concerned and his own future employment, secondly, so far as the rules and regulations are concerned regarding preretirement leave and post-retirement employment. In both those cases we think the rules need to be clearer in order.to avoid any future loopholes.

Question: Governor, back to Lydia's resignation. Do you think that without her service the work of ExCo will be affected?

Governor: She was obviously for many years a great contributor to the Executive Council but we have other notable members of the Executive Council as well and I'm sure that I will continue to get very good well informed intelligent advice. I also get very good advice from my senior officials and from time to time I get good advice from Legislative Councillors as well.

Question: So you think there will be no effect on that?

Governor: I don't think it will affect the working of ExCo. no, but that is not to say that Baroness hasn't made a significant contribution, not just to the Executive Council and to the Legislative Council before that but in many other walks of life around Hong Kong. It is interesting when you're going around Hong Kong how often you see a plaque either to Lydia Dunn or to Dame Lydia Dunn or to Baroness Dunn. Throughout her career she has made a very considerable contribution to Hong Kong and there will be a lot of people who are sad and a bit understanding about her departure.

Question: Do you think her departure, whatever the reason she gives, will be a blow to confidence in Hong Kong? You know, seeing people like that leave at this time for whatever reason they say will worry people.

Governor: No. A simple answer.

Question: The time that you two co-operating on Hong Kong issues, on political things, do you two have differences in any time? Or...

Governor: No.

Question: About the report on Li Kwan-ha being employed in a private company, regarding foreign affairs, do you agree with the report... or do you think that...

Governor: I am very satisfied with the Commission's report and that is why we will be implementing its findings.

5

Question: Do you think that Lydia's resignation means that the importance of ExCo is going down? Because some political scholar commented on the resignation of Lydia and saying that her resignation means that the importance of ExCo is going down. So do you think that she didn't want to stay any more ...

Governor: I think that the role of ExCo has changed a bit. I don't think its importance has decreased. It's changed as the Legislative Council has gained credibility as it's become a more democratic and- more representative institution. After September this year the whole of LegCo for the first time will be elected. That is part of the political development of Hong Kong and it obviously has implications, not least for the relationship between the executive and the legislature and not least for the development of accountability in government. But I don't think that it weakens the role of ExCo, I think it changes slightly the role of ExCo. I mean when there weren't any elected Members in the Legislative Council the Executive Council obviously had a slightly different role.

Question: Didn't you ask her not to leave since she is a great contributor as you said?.

Governor: She is also a very mature, very experienced public servant and businesswoman and if there is one thing that I have learnt in life it is when people whose judgement you respect reach a decision. you don't bend their ami or bash their ear to try to persuade them to change their mind. Nobody makes a decision as considerable as Baroness Dunn has made without thinking about it very hard and since I respect her judgement and since I respect her experience, I wouldn't expect her to come to a decision like that without the greatest thought, without thinking of even more angles than I'd thought out. She has been, 1 repeat, a very considerable public servant in Hong Kong. For business and personal reasons which even now she is doubtless explaining to some of your colleagues, she has decided that she is going to leave Hong Kong. But I am delighted that her experience will be available in the House of Lords so that Hong Kong interests, interests in which she has taken such a personal part over the years, like the whole question of passports for the ethnic minorities, will have a tireless champion in Parliament at Westminster.

Question: A few years ago she said that you are too young to be a governor and now she is leaving and what do you think, what is your feeling now?

Governor: I don't remember her ever saying I was too young to be a governor but if she did say that I regard it as rather flattering. I'm actually incredibly old now -looking at all of you - I'm 51, that's really ancient. Some people - Mozart had died 17 years ago; he was 35. President Clinton will have retired, if he wins the next presidential election, I think before he is my age or when he's about my age. I’m sure lots of you would make good governors and Executive Council Members. Okay. Thank you very much.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

6

Baroness Dunn retires from ExCo * * * * *

The Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, said today (Thursday) that he had accepted the retirement of Baroness Dunn from the Executive Council with effect from the end of July.

Mr Patten said: "Baroness Dunn has announced today that she will be moving to the UK for business and personal reasons. I am sure this was a difficult decision for her to take.

"Lydia Dunn has over the years made an enormous contribution to the community. I shall miss her advice, but I know she will continue to speak out for Hong Kong in the House of Lords."

The Governor added that he did not propose to make any immediate changes to the membership of ExCo.

"As I have said before, I will consider this after the Legislative Council elections in September," he said.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Baroness Dunn's statement *****

The following is Senior Executive Council Member, the Rt Hon Baroness Dunn's opening statement at tea with the media today (Thursday):

I have been invited to join the Swire Group's parent board in London as an Executive Director as from the middle of 1996, and I have agreed to do so. In that capacity, I shall be given a range of responsibilities for Swire Group business in Hong Kong and in the region. This will keep me closely in touch with the territory's affairs and bring me back here regularly. I shall continue to be a director of John Swire and Sons Hong Kong, Swire Pacific, Cathay Pacific as well as the Hong Kong Bank. I am fortunate to be given such challenging and important opportunities during these next few years.

My new appointment will however mean a move to London. This I plan to do in January next year when I cease to be executive here in Hong Kong. This was a very difficult decision for me. Hong Kong is where I was bom and where I belong. But my husband, Michael, and I have both decided that a move at this time of our lives makes sense for us both.

7

For some time, Michael has been saying that he would like to spend more time in London where his roots are. He came out to Hong Kong on a three year contract in 1983; and has stayed on in Hong Kong for twelve years because of me. He is now past 60 and would like to develop his practice in London and see more of his children. But he too will be spending a lot of time here. He will continue to practise in the Hong Kong Courts and will be keeping his chambers and staff here.

I have been on the Executive Council for thirteen years, and for some time I have been thinking that it was time to step down. I have asked the Governor last Monday - and he has agreed - that I shall leave the Council during this summer recess in August. This will give me time to plan ahead and prepare to move to London and to give the Governor maximum notice of my plans.

1 want to stress that these decisions should not be misinterpreted. My confidence in Hong Kong's future is unchanged. It is simply that Michael and I have reached personal decisions that will enable each of us to continue with our careers'in London.

My views about the future of Hong Kong are well-known. I continue to believe what I have said over and over again - publicly and privately - that I have every confidence in the future of Hong Kong as part of China. I am sure that Hong Kong has a vital part to play in China's future, and I am sure that China is fully committed to giving Hong Kong a special status under the Basic Law so that it will continue to enjoy its distinctive way of life well beyond 1997. It is in China's own interest to do so. That is still my view today.

I am looking forward to taking up my new role as a London based Executive Director of the Swire Group, to helping to implement the Group's substantial investment plans here and to contributing to the health and strength of Hong Kong's economy in the coming years. I also hope to attend at the House of Lords more often and I will make sure that Hong Kong's voice is heard by Britain's political leaders. In all these ways, my heart will continue to beat for Hong Kong.

Although I am sure I will be seeing some of you in the next few months, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for the warmth and friendship and courtesy that you have always shown towards me. Hong Kong is very lucky to have such a committed, vigilant and professional media.

End/Thursday. June 15, 1995

8

Civil service rules on private sector employment * * * * ♦

The Government announced today (Thursday) that the Governor had accepted advice submitted to him by the Advisory Committee on Post-retirement Employment on the subject of private sector employment undertaken by the former Commissioner of Police, Mr Li Kwan-ha. The Committee also made recommendations on tightening the rules in the light of Mr Li's case.

In brief, the Committee recommended that:

(a) Mr Li Kwan-ha should be required to undergo a six month sanitisation period before being permitted to resume duty with Cheung Kong (Holdings) and Hutchinson Whampoa Limited, and

(b) the rules regarding employment during pre-retirement leave should be clarified and the rules regarding post-retirement employment should be tightened to avoid ambiguities and to ensure that civil service retirees seek approval as required by the pensions legislation.

In arriving at these recommendations the Committee noted that Mr Li's solicitor had advised him that because the contract offered to him by Cheung Kong and Hutchinson specifically excluded duties in Hong Kong, they would fall outside the scope of the pensions legislation.

The Committee did not accept this interpretation and felt that Mr Li should have applied for permission. Had Mr Li applied before starting private sector employment, the Committee considered that permission would have been given, on the grounds that his contracts with Cheung Kong and Hutchinson Whampoa specifically excluded duties in Hong Kong and that, on the facts presented, there was no apparent conflict of interest.

However, given Mr Li's senior position while in Government, the public would expect a reasonable break between ceasing active duty and joining the private sector. The Committee would most probably have recommended a six-month sanitisation period.

The Committee concluded that Mr Li had exercised poor judgement in relying solely on his solicitor's advice about whether permission was required, rather than seeking clarification from Civil Service Branch.

9

Since Mr Li had indicated a wish to resume work for the two companies, and had since submitted the necessary paper work, the Committee decided to consider the case as though it were a fresh application. The Committee advised that permission should be given for Mr Li to resume work for the companies, but not until November 15, i.e., only after a six-month sanitisation period commencing May 15, the date he voluntarily ceased work for the two companies.

In the light of its examination of the case the Committee felt that certain clarification and tightening of the current rules regarding post retirement employment for senior officials were required, in three areas: »

Firstly, that the rules be amended to make it absolutely clear that permission to work during pre- retirement leave is required, even if it is to be undertaken outside Hong Kong.

Secondly, that civil servants planning to take up paid employment outside Hong Kong during the first two years of retirement should check with the Government in writing about whether approval is required if there is any possibility of a conflict of interest. Specifically they would be required to check if they arc to be based in Hong Kong or if the company they are to work for has business connections with Hong Kong.

Thirdly, that all former directorate officers on retirement should inform Civil Service Branch of any paid employment during the first two years of retirement.

The Governor has accepted the Committee's advice.

Mr Li Kwan-ha voluntarily ceased work for the two companies on May 15. He will not be permitted to resume his work for the companies until after the six-month sanitisation period is completed on November 14.

Detailed rules implementing the Committee's recommendations are being worked out as quickly as possible by Civil Service Branch and will be promulgated shortly.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

10

Unemployment and underemployment statistics *****

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the period March - May was provisionally estimated at 2.9%, according to the latest labour force statistics released today (Thursday) by the Census and Statistics Department.

This was lower than the corresponding unemployment rate of 3.1% for the period February - April. The unemployment rate for this period was revised upward slightly from the earlier provisional estimate of 3.0%.

The underemployment rate, on the other hand, moved higher, from 1.5% in February - April to a provisional estimate of 1.9% in March - May.

Commenting on the latest figures, a Government spokesman said the recent rise in the unemployment rate was apparently tapering off. As regards the underemployment rate, this might be a result of some of the workers taking up part-time jobs and temporary jobs, when faced with reduced opportunities for full-time jobs in the labour market.

During the period of February - April, the number of unemployed persons was estimated at 84,600. Of this, 4,200 were first-time job-seckers. The number of underemployed persons was estimated at 45.600.

The unemployment and underemployment statistics were obtained from a continuous General Household Survey conducted by the Census and Statistics Department.

The survey for February - April covered a quarterly sample of some 12,600 households or 43,100 persons, selected scientifically to represent the land-based civilian non-institutional population in Hong Kong. Relevant data were obtained from the survey by interviewing each individual member aged 15 or over in the households sampled.

In the survey, the definitions used in measuring unemployment and underemployment follow closely those recommended by the International Labour Organisation.

Detailed analysis of labour force characteristics is given in the report on the General Household Survey which is published four times a year. The next report covering the quarter ending March will be available at the Government Publications Centre by the end of June at $32.00 a copy.

End/Thursday, June 15. 1995

11

Employment services available to job-seekers *****

More than 700 people have registered with the Job Matching Programme since it was launched in April, with the number of placements achieved totalling about 210.

This was said by the Assistant Commissioner for Labour, Mrs Angela Ho, during the visit by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, to the Labour Department's Selective Placement Division (SPD) and Local Employment Service (LES) in Tsuen Wan today (Thursday).

The Governor was told that the programme, now available at five selected LES offices for jobless locals aged 30 or above, would be extended to all nine LES offices later.

Since the Special Placement Team was set up within the LES in March to strengthen placement services for local construction workers seeking jobs related to airport core projects, more than 1,000 people have registered and more than 200 placements have been achieved.

The Governor was also told that LES was able to serve ordinary job-seekers within 30 minutes of the appointed time and vacancy orders could be put up for display within 24 hours upon receipt from employers.

A total of 103,700 job-seekers had registered with LES in 1994. But in the first five months this year, some 56,940 registrants had already been received, representing an increase of 19.3 per cent over the same period last year.

Briefing the Governor on the work of SPD, Senior Labour Officer (Selective Placement), Mrs Jennie Chor. said SPD had been working vigorously to enhance the employment opportunities of the disabled.

Promotional programmes like exhibitions, visits to major companies and employers' associations, public events to commend outstanding employers and disabled employees, targeted campaigns to canvass vacancies arc organised from time to time.

Mrs Chor told the Governor that new enhancement measures included the production of TV and radio programmes to reduce public prejudice against the disabled, publication of new guidebooks to enhance peer group acceptance and organising seminars targeted at employers.

12

SPD is also actively involved in the employees retraining programmes for the disabled.

In 1994, SPD registered 2,864 disabled job-seekers and placed a record figure of 1,414 in employment, with a placement rate of nearly 50 per cent.

For the first five months this year, registrations and placements with SPD stood at 1,314 and 575 respectively.

During the tour to the SPD, the Governor also watched disabled job-seekers undergo vocational assessment and chatted with them afterwards.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Flags finally lowered on British Military Hospital *****

Nearly 100 years of military hospitals in Hong Kong come to an end this month when the British Military Hospital (BMH), at King’s Park, Kowloon, closes.

Tomorrow (Friday) the flags will finally be lowered on the long and distinguished history of military hospitals in the Territory, a ceremonial occasion to be marked by the traditional Beating of Retreat performed by the visiting Band of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME).

Hospital staff, dressed in period costume, will also enact the history of the medical services in Hong Kong from 1841 to the present date.

The departure of the last patient on June 23 will officially mark the closure of the hospital.

BMH was opened in 1967 and during its early years was commended for the care given to US Armed Forces during the Vietnam War and to the subsequent influx of Vietnamese boat people.

In the mid-1970s it was also decided that the hospital's spare-bed capacity should be used for the treatment of war veterans and entitled civilian and government patients.

13

In 1986 the hospital underwent refurbishment and continued to provide medical services to the British Garrison, their families and entitled civilians until the decision was taken last year to close the site. Garrison personnel requiring hospital treatment will, in future, be referred to civilian hospitals under contract arrangements with Headquarters British Forces.

The site at King’s Park is to be handed over to the I long Kong Government in September.

Attention News Editors:

You are invited to send representatives to cover the closing ceremony and Beating Retreat which takes place at 6.30 pm tomorrow.

Press should arrive at the main entrance of the hospital no later than 6.15 pm where JSPRS representatives will meet and escort them to an allocated press area. The ceremony is expected to last about 40 mins.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Voluntary Energy Efficiency Labelling Scheme introduced

*****

The Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) is inviting manufacturers, importers and local agents of household refrigeration appliances to join a "Voluntary Energy Efficiency Labelling Scheme".

The scheme, which came into effect today (Thursday) under the auspices of the Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee, has been developed with the aims of:

* stimulating public awareness of energy conservation and environmental improvement;

* providing readily available pre-purchase information on energy consumption and efficiency data to help consumers select more energy efficient products;

1 4 -

* persuading the manufacturers and market to phase out less energy efficient products; and

* achieving energy-saving in households.

The scheme covers household refrigeration appliances sold in Hong Kong but does not cover second hand products or products already in use. It will operate on a voluntary basis, and interested manufacturers, local agents and importers can join the scheme through registration with the EMSD.

By joining the scheme, participants can keep pace with the international trend which calls for the use of energy labels. At the same time, they can give assurance to their customers that their products are energy saving and of high quality.

It is a prerequisite that appliance to be qualified for registration should meet the performance test and energy consumption test requirements. After joining the scheme, participants are required to produce and affix specified labels at their own cost on all registered appliances. Such labels will gradually appear on refrigerators towards the end of the year.

Consumers can obtain from the energy label information on annual energy consumption. The energy efficiency grading of the appliance will be assessed on a scale of 1 to 5 by comparing to appliances in the same category according to the specified method laid down in the scheme. The test methods are based on the ISO 8187 standard. Grade 1 is the most energy efficient.

The EMSD will carry out random checks on registered and unregistered appliances and take necessary follow-up actions to ensure the scheme operates effectively. In the event of the labelling scheme being abused, legal action can be initiated under either the Trade Description Ordinance or the copyright legislation, as appropriate.

The EMSD may dc-rcgister a non-compliant product with immediate effect if registration of an appliance is contrary to public interest. A participant who decides to discontinue participating in the scheme or to withdraw any registered model from the registered appliances list will have to give at least three months' notice to the EMSD.

The voluntary scheme will operate until December 31, 1998. before which a review would be made for the possibility of further refinement.

Similar schemes for other energy consumption household appliances, such as room coolers and washing machines, will be introduced next year.

End/Thursday. June 15, 1996

15

11,668 agreements lodged with Land Registry in May ♦ * * * ♦

A total of 11,668 sale and purchase agreements for building units, which include both residential and non-residential properties, were lodged with the Land Registry last month.

The figure represents a decrease of 10 per cent from that’ of April this year, and a 9.3 per cent drop compared with May last year.

The total consideration of these agreements is $36.46 billion, down 3.2 per cent and 22.1 per cent as compared with the amounts for April 1995 and May 1994 respectively.

The figures are contained in the monthly statistics released today (Thursday) by the Land Registry on deeds relating to property transactions received for registration in the Urban and New Territories Land Registries last month.

Relevant statistics for April 1995 and May 1994 were provided for comparison.

Figures on sale and purchase agreements received for the past 12 months and the year-on-year rate of change were also released.

The statistics generally relate to land transactions executed up to four weeks prior to their submission for registration, as there is usually a time lag between the execution of deeds and their lodgement for registration.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Sex education course for secondary teachers

*****

The Education Department is inviting sex education co-ordinators, teachers or guidance teachers at secondary schools to participate in a three-day course on sex education to enhance their competence in implementing sex education in schools.

A spokesman for the department said the course to be held on August 29, 30 and 31 was aimed at improving teachers' knowledge on sexuality, teaching methodology and resources, and equipping them with skills to help pupils with sex related problems.

.. r < -

- 16 -

The spokesman said the course was the third of a similar type of courses organised by the department's Advisory Inspectorate Division since last year.

v i..; ' <■>

Principals of secondary schools wishing to nominate their teachers to attend the course are requested to return the reply slip to the department on or before June 23 as seats will be reserved on a first-come first-served basis.

■ ■ ' •

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

■ . . • ; ■' .41 ■

Beat drugs course for teachers

* * ♦ ♦ ♦

Secondary school teachers are encouraged to join a three-day course which is aimed at equipping participants with knowledge and skills in preventive drug education at schools. . -

The course to be held between August 23 and 25, is regularly organised by the Education Department and the Narcotics Division.

b

A spokesman for the Education Department said participants would find the course very valuable as a former drug addict would share his personal experience while a medical officer would be invited to talk about the treatment and rehabilitation of drug abusers.

The spokesman said other speakers would include inspectors from the Education Department, staff of the Narcotics Division, principals, school social workers and psychiatrists.

The course will also feature an overview of drug problems in Hong Kong and the work of Narcotics Division, preventive drug education in schools, the medical aspects of drug abuse, identifying and handling students with drug problems.

At the course, teachers will participate in talks, workshops, forums and discussions. They will also have a chance to look at the drug samples, drug abuse paraphernalia and teaching resources displayed at the centre.

Teachers wishing to attend the course should return the completed application forms to the Department on or before June 23 as seats are reserved on a first come, first served basis. <

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

17

21 -Gun salute to mark the Queen’s birthday ♦ * ♦ ♦ ♦

The Royal Navy will mark the official birthday of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, with a 21-gun salute, fired from HMS Starling, at precisely 12 noon on , Saturday (June 17), as she sails through Hong Kong Harbour.

Since HMS Tamar moved from Prince of Wales Barracks to Stonecutters Island in 1993, salutes have been fired from a site on the south shore of that island. However, the site was unsatisfactory because it was invisible to the public and it has -since been enveloped by preparatory work for the new naval base for the PLA Navy.

New saluting cannon has therefore been brought out from the UK so that salutes can be fired from a sea-going warship in the full view of much of the city.

Attention News Editors:

You are invited to send representatives to photograph the event which will be visible from the waterfront at the Queen's Pier, Central.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Public reminded not to bring back endangered species ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Members of the public are reminded not to bring back items of endangered species on their return from visits to other countries during the forthcoming long weekend.

The appeal was made today (Thursday) by a conservation officer of the Agriculture and Fisheries Department (AFD), Dr So Ping-man who noted that usually after a long public holiday, some of the returning visitors were found by Customs and Excise officers at control points to have brought in endangered species.

Latest statistics indicate that there are cases where visitors returning to Hong Kong have brought in with their luggage tiger bone plasters and stuffed sea turtles and crocodiles, he said.

18

Dr So reiterated that any person importing, exporting or possessing any endangered species, including their parts and derivatives, without a licence issued by AFD, would have contravened the Animals and Plants (Protection of Endangered Species) Ordinance. This control measure also applies to travellers.

• t

Under the ordinance, any person found guilty of importing a highly endangered species item without a licence is liable to a maximum fine of $100,000 and one year's imprisonment. If the import is for a commercial purpose, the maximum fine will be a $5 million fine plus two years in jail.

Highly endangered species include rhinos, tiger, most species of bear, all sea turtles and medicines containing or claiming to contain rhino or tiger ingredients.

Dr So said in, the first four months of this year, a total of 114 seizures were made under the ordinance by AFD, resulting in 113 prosecutions, with fines totalling $423,200.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

Tung Wah Group of Hospitals directors visit SWD ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The new Board of Directors of the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals (TWGH) today (Thursday) paid a courtesy call on the Director of Social Welfare, Mr Ian Strachan, and discussed with him the future development of welfare services of the group.

Praising the TWGH for its contribution to the community, Mr Strachan said his department would continue to render assistance and support to the group.

The chairman of the new Board of Directors, Mr Willie Lui Pok-shek, said apart from upgrading its existing services, TWGH would direct attention towards expanding its scope of services to cater for the needs of various sectors of the community.

"In view of the immense local needs for elderly and rehabilitation services, we will put more attention and efforts on the development of these two service areas in future," Mr Lui said.

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

19

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change ($million)

Opening balance in the account 2,057 0930 +443

Closing balance in the account 1,722 1000 +440

Change attributable to : 1100 +462

Money market activity +465 1200 +465

LAF today -800 1500 +465

1600 +465

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 *+0.0* 15.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.20 2 years 2705 6.40 101.26 5.78

1 month 5.37 3 years 3804 6.90 102.41 6.06

3 months 5.42 5 years 5006 6.60 100.03 6.70

6 months 5.46 5 years M501 7.90 103.34 7.21

12 months 5.58

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $16,836 million

Closed June 15, 1995

End/Thursday, June 15, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Friday, June 16,1995

Contents Page No.

Transcript of the Financial Secretary's media session...................... 1

Expert group to review Prosecutions Division appointed..................... 3

Investigation report on Paragon Holdings published......................... 4

New member appointed to Law Reform Commission.............................. 5

Plea to waste collection truck drivers..................................... 6

Information Code to be extended............................................ 7

Chinese delegation to visit Hong Kong...................................... 8

Fire services telecommunication system to be upgraded...................... 8

Rating regulation gazetted................................................ 10

Land to be resumed for construction of platform........................... 11

Fees for sixth form classes gazetted...................................... 12

Health Education Centre at Kowloon Park................................... 12

"Parents also Appreciate Teachers" drive.................................. 13

New nature trail opens.................................................... 14

Reptiles seized from pet shop........................................ 15

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations...................... 16

1

Transcript of the Financial Secretary’s media session ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The following is the transcript of the Financial Secretary, Sir Hamish Macleod’s meet-the-press session after officiating at the ’’Last Blast” ceremony at Chek Lap Kok today (Friday):

FS: I'm afraid it is rather noisy, so we will have to do our best. But there will be a lot of background noise. I think it is a significant event. At its peak, this work here was producing two hectares of new land a day. So it is an amazing effort and I think about half the dredging fleet in the world was here at one stage. So it’s very good to see it complete and to see the last detonation taking place, I’m glad to say safely.

And of course this was necessary to enable the rest of the work to proceed and some of you will have seen there is already concrete work rising now from the foundations and just slightly above the ground, so that is also proceeding quite well.

Any questions?

Question: Can you confirm that due to the delay of the two Financial Services Agreements, the opening date of the airport will be delayed...(inaudible)?

FS: The question was on the opening date of the airport. It’s true that we really do need the FSAs to be agreed very soon. Otherwise we will face some very difficult choices on the award of contracts for the airport. But we haven’t quite reached that stage yet. Until we have got the FSAs signed up it is very difficult to give a new date for completion and opening of the airport. So that is why we are being rather reluctant to do that. As soon as we have got the FSAs signed, then we can fairly swiftly, I think, come out in public and give a sensible date for completion and the opening. At the moment we have to leave that a bit in the air.

Question: How optimistic are you that the agreements can be reached before the end of the LegCo year?

FS: Well, I’ve learned not to be optimistic or pessimistic. But just to keep on trying. And we are carrying on talks — talks are proceeding with the Chinese side on the financing. They haven't stopped at all, they've carried on, and I'm sure both sides will do their best to reach agreement as quickly as possible. As I say, it has to be pretty quickly.

Question: Just then you said that the Government will have some difficult choices, can you elaborate on that?

2

FS: I don't want to elaborate because my aim is to try and reach agreement and avoid those difficult choices.

I'm giving favour to this questioner merely because of the noise problem but try, yes.

Question: When does the money start to run out?

FS: Sorry? When does the money start to run out? I don't want to be too specific. But the main crunch comes with the airport. The railway money lasts rather longer. And we can't go on for very much longer making new commitments on the airport or we will run out of money.

Question: Could be it as early as late July...(inaudible)?

FS: I'm not going to be more specific, I'm afraid, because my aim is, as I say, to have the right atmosphere to reach agreement.

Question: Have any investors or contractors expressed their concern or worries over the delay of the opening of the airport?

> ; : •

FS: Well, yes and no. 1 mean I think probably investors and potential lenders are rather used to this project involving rather a lot of talks - rather more talks than one would be used to in a major project. But as you can see today, the fact is that we have made very good progress and that's a hopeful sign I think, and it keeps people interested. We are certainly quite confident that potential investors and lenders are still very interested in this project. But of course they will want to see the fine print.

Question: Is there a large gap between the Chinese and the British sides...(inaudible)?

FS: Is there a large gap? No, there is not a large gap.

Question: How large is the gap?

FS: I'm not going to go into the detail. The gap isn't very large.

Question: What will happen if the money runs out?

FS: Well, I say we will have to face that when it actually happens. At the moment I try to be positive and we'll try and reach agreement.

3

Question: Were you encouraged by the recent remarks made to the General Chamber of Commerce that China, following the deal on the Court of Final Appeal, would push through other agreements on other issues?

FS: I was mildly encouraged by that. I have to say mildly because it's always a bit risky to be too sure when it's an indirect report rather than hearing the words myself. Certainly, I am encouraged by the CFA agreement, mainly in itself because I think it was important again for the perception of Hong Kong from outside as well as domestically, that we saw that the rule of law, that whole issue, was making some progress. So I think that is extremely helpful.

Thank you very much. I think it's very difficult here, it is very noisy. c

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

Expert group to review Prosecutions Division appointed ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Attorney General, Mr Jeremy Mathews, today (Friday) announced the composition of an expert group who will assist the Director of Public Prosecutions to review the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division of the Legal Department.

The group, to be chaired by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Peter Nguyen QC, comprises Mr Eric Barnes, a retired High Court Judge; Mrs Eleanor Ling, a Director of Jardine Pacific Co Ltd and a former Urban Councillor; Mr Arjan Sakhrani QC, a practising barrister, and Mr Tony Scott, Director of Corruption Prevention, IC AC.

The proposal to review the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division of the Legal Department was raised by Legislative Councillor Mrs Elsie Tu in a motion debate in the Legislative Council last Wednesday (June 7).

The following is the Terms of Reference of the Director of Public Prosecutions' independent expert group:

4

”To review the decision-making process in the Prosecutions Division of the Legal Department with special reference to the institution and conduct of proceedings, having regard to the constitutional independence of the prosecuting authority, with a view to making recommendations on necessary improvements to that process in order to -

t - J . . .. • <\>* • .

(a) minimise legal-technical errors;

(b) ensure consistency of advice and policy;

(c) ensure that proper checks and balances are in place; and

(d) maximise transparency and accountability ,-f.

and to producer report for submission to the Legislative Council by December 1995."

End/Friday, June 16, 1995 , .... *

Investigation report on Paragon Holdings published ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Government today, (Friday) published the report of the investigation regarding the membership of CNPC (Hong Kong) Ltd (formerly known as Paragon Holdings Ltd) during the period from March 1 to May 31, 1993.

A copy of the report had forwarded to the company as well.

The Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, said: "On November 12, 1994, the Financial Secretary appointed Ms Helen Lee of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) as an inspector under section 33 of the Securities (Disclosure of Interests) Ordinance to investigate and report on the membership of the company in order to determine the true persons who are or have been financially interested in the success or failure of the company or are able to control or materially influence its policy during the period from March 1, 1993 to May 31, 1993, and on any subsequent transactions in shares material to the investigation.

"The inspection focused on the ownership of 229,160,000 shares of the company, which accounted for about 10 per cent of the shareholding at the relevant time." he said.

Ms Lee submitted her report to the Financial Secretary in late March.

5

"The Inspector made a number of observations regarding the true persons who were financially interested in the shares in question during the period covered by the investigation.

"The recommendations in the report have been accepted by the Financial Secretary and appropriate follow-up action has been taken or is being pursued," Mr Cartland said.

Copies of the report are now available for sale at the Government publication centres.

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

New member appointed to Law Reform Commission *****

The Chairman of the Law Reform Commission, the Attorney General, Mr Jeremy Mathews, today (Friday) announced the appointment of a new member to the Commission. Mr Justice Jerome Chan has been appointed a member of the Commission for a term of three years.

Mr Mathews welcomed the Judge’s appointment and said he looked forward to working with Mr Justice Chan on the Commission.

Mr Mathews also announced the re-appointment of Mr Alasdair G Morrison, Mr Andrew Liao QC and Professor Derek Roebuck for a second three-year term. Mr Mathews said he was pleased that Mr Morrison and Mr Liao and Professor Roebuck had accepted another term, saying that it was important to the Commission to have continuity of membership.

Mr Justice Chan replaces Mr Justice Mortimer who is retiring after serving on the Commission as a member for six years. Mr Mathews paid tribute to the hard work and dedication of Mr Justice Mortimer, in particular his chairmanship of the Subcommittee on Privacy.

With the latest appointment, the Law Reform Commission now consists of 12 members appointed by the Governor. They are: Mr Justice Chan, Mr Eric Cheung, Professor Yash Ghai, Professor H C Kuan, Mrs Miriam Lau, Mr Andrew Liao, QC, Mr Gage McAfee, Mr Alasdair Morrison, Mr Robert Ribeiro, QC, Professor Derek Roebuck, Professor Peter Wesley-Smith and Mr Justein Wong. The Attorney General, the Chief Justice and the Law Draftsman are ex officio members.

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

- 6 -

iv J -’WV1 '>>'

> *• •...*>. r .

Plea to waste collection truck drivers

*****

The Government urged private waste collection truck drivers to refrain from taking any drastic action that would disrupt the disposal of waste at landfills and cause inconvenience to the public including those domestic users of the waste collection service who are exempted from the charging scheme.

A Government spokesman said: "We have already taken into account their views of charging by vehicle class and are prepared to accept an amendment to the Waste Disposal (Charges for Disposal of Waste) Regulation, which will be moved in the LegCo on June 21. This will introduce a parallel system that would enable waste collection operators and truck drivers to choose payment either by vehicle class or by weight of waste on a per tonne basis."

. , < <v> ... . . •./

With regard to their concern about upfront payment of landfill charges, the spokesman said: "We have suggested to the Hong Kong Construction Association to introduce an arrangement which would enable construction contractors, as main users of the private waste collection service, to hand over pre-paid tickets to a waste collector or truck driver.

. - J. ..

The spokesman noted that the current scheme was developed after lengthy consultation with the industry since 1993.

"Our charging proposals have been revised to take into account views expressed during the consultation exercise which received wide support of the polluter/user pays principles from all parties including the Hong Kong Construction Association," he said.

'J ■ . .... ■ ■*- '

The spokesman also pointed out that similar schemes based on polluter/user pays principles are being practised in many places for a long time including Singapore, Taiwan, Korea and Japan.

The spokesman said: ’’Charging will only be applicable to waste generated by commerce and industry. Further delay in the implementation would mean that taxpayers would have to continue to foot the bill which came to $600m in 1994. This is clearly unrealistic and must stop."

.. . . i

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

r?.

I -. iu»

7

Information Code to be extended

* ♦ * ♦ *

The Government today (Friday) announced that the Code on Access to Information will be extended to cover a further 11 departments and one policy branch.

Those to be added to the Code's coverage on July 1 will be the Companies Registry. Correctional Services Department, Environmental Protection Department. Hospital Services Department, Information Services Department, Management Services Agency. Post Office, Printing Department, Rating and Valuation Department, Student Financial Assistance Agency, Treasury and Transport Branch.

This will bring to 21 the number of Government agencies subject to the Code, which was introduced on a pilot scheme basis on March 1

A Government spokesman said the pilot scheme had operated smoothly over the past four months.

"Over 150 requests for information had been received by the nine branches and departments originally covered by the Code, and most of these requests had been met within the time limits laid down in the Code," he said.

"So far the Commissioner for Administrative Complaints had received no complaints of failure by departments to meet their obligations under the Code."

Copies of the Code on Access to Information are available free of charge at all District Offices, and from all departments covered by the Code.

Advice on how to submit requests for information and where to send them is also available from District Offices and from the Access to Information Officers of each department.

End/Friday. June 16. 1995

8

Chinese delegation to visit Hong Kong

*****

A Chinese delegation to be led by Mr Xu Yiping, Head of Standards and Norms Department of the Ministry of Construction, will visit Hong Kong from June 19 to 28, the Government announced today (Friday).

There will be seven other members in the delegation. They work in the Ministry of Construction, State Commission for Restructuring of Economic System, State Administration of Building Material Industry, State Land Administration, State Planning Commission, Hainan Provincial People's Government and the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office of the State Council.

A Government spokesman said this was one in a series of sponsored visits between China and Hong Kong.

"The objective of the sponsored visit programme is to increase mutual understanding of Chinese and Hong Kong Government officials on each other's systems and ways of life," he said.

The delegation will be briefed by senior Hong Kong Government officials on policies relating to works, lands and planning, transportation, trade matters, financial affairs, district administration and regional services.

End/Friday, June 16. 1995

Fire services telecommunication system to be upgraded

*****

Hong Kong needed to constantly update itself on the latest technology and to see how it could best be applied to achieve cost-effective solutions and improvements in serving the public, the Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services. Mr Hugh Phillipson. said today (Friday).

"Today, the Director of Fire Services is taking a significant step forward in this direction by upgrading the fire services telecommunication systems with new equipment which incorporates the latest state-of-the-art radio technology." he said.

9

Speaking at a Contract Signing Ceremony for a Trunked Radio System for the Fire Services Department, Mr Phillipson said the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) was responsible for providing a very wide range of electrical, mechanical and electronic engineering services to government departments and to the community as a whole.

Part of this work was the project management bf electronic projects and over the years, the EMSD had committed itself to quality service and was proud to have a very good working relationship with the Fire Services Department and to have helped them on that project, he said.

Mr Phillipson pointed out that the contract, worth $76 million, would deliver a reliable modem trunked radio system to replace the existing discrete channel system.

The new system to become operational in late 1996 would optimise the use of a limited frequency spectrum and would have less radio interference, but would have a much higher operating efficiency.

Furthermore, signal reception would also be improved because of enhanced features added into the new system such as frequency spectrum reuse, automatic handoffs and multichannel selections as well as automatic signal sampling.

The new system would provide effective radio communication coverage for the whole of the territory whether it be on land, in road tunnels, or over water.

With this new system, communications of fire engines, fire boats and ambulances with the Fire Services Communications Centre would be guaranteed, thereby greatly enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of the Fire Services operations, he said.

"The Fire Services Department provides an excellent service to the community, they deserve the best and latest equipment to help them in their work, and when this contract is complete that is exactly what they will have," he said.

The contract was signed by Mr Phillipson with a representative of Motorola Asia Pacific Limited.

Also attending today's contract signing ceremony as a witness was the Director of Fire Services, Mr Lam Chek-yuen.

End/Friday, June 16. 1995

10

Rating regulation gazetted *****

The Government today (Friday) published in the Gazette the Rating (Effective Date of Interim Valuation) Regulation and the commencement dates of the other changes proposed in the Rating (Amendment) Ordinance 1995.

The Regulation seeks to formalise the existing practice of fixing the effective date from which rates are payable in respect of newly completed buildings.

It also removes the requirement for staff of the Rating and Valuation Department to check the occupation date of domestic properties.

"Under the existing legislation, for most properties, the effective date of an interim valuation, which is the term used for the assessment of a new building, is either the first day of the month following the expiration of a specified period from the issue of the Occupation Permit (OP), or the date of occupation, whichever is the earlier. The specified period is six months for non-domestic premises and three months for domestic premises." a government spokesman said.

"However, many properties are affected by the Consent Scheme which prevents them from being occupied until the Certificate of Compliance (COC) has been issued by the Director of Lands.

"To avoid unfairness, the Commissioner of Rating and Valuation (CRV) has often had to exercise his discretion to defer the effective date of interim valuation in such cases," he said.

"Under the new Regulation, the effective date of interim valuation in respect of new domestic properties will be 90 days from the issue ol the OP or COC as appropriate.

"For non-domestic properties, the effective date is 180 days from the issue of the relevant document or the date of first occupation of the property, whichever is the earlier."

The spokesman said ratepayers who actually occupied new domestic properties earlier than 90 days from the date of issue of the relevant document would marginally benefit from the slight deferral of the effective date.

"Relatively few premises would be involved and this change will represent a substantial saving in largely unproductive checking work for the department.

11

"Ratepayers of non-domestic properties will only be marginally affected by the change," he added.

The new Regulation will take effect from August 1.

Meanwhile, from July 1 onwards, the responsibility for rates billing and accounting would also be transferred from the Treasury to the Rating and Valuation Department.

"The transfer of responsibility will optimise the resources of the two departments and enable the CRV to provide a one-stop service for ratepayers who have enquiries on their accounts.

"Half refund of rates for vacant non-domestic premises would cease from July 1, 1995, onwards. However, full refund will continue for vacant undeveloped land or if a vacancy results from a court order obtained by government," the spokesman said.

If members of the public wish to have more information, they can contact Mr F G Heath on 2805 7602 or Mr K L Ng on 2805 7622.

End/Friday. June 16. 1995

Land to be resumed for construction of platform *****

The Government will resume 36 private agricultural lots with a total area of 6.745.3 square metres for the construction of the San Tsuen Pai Northeast Platform to facilitate the expansion of the villages in San Tsuen and Hoi Pa.

Resumption works are scheduled to start in October for completion in 18 months.

Details of resumption were notified in the Gazette today (Friday).

The land will be reverted to the Government three months from the date of the Gazette Notice.

End/Friday. June 16. 1995

12

Fees for sixth form classes gazetted *****

Fees for sixth form classes in the government evening secondary school course were published in the Gazette today (Friday).

A spokesman for the Education Department said the tuition fees will be $1,290 per annum in the 1995-96 and $1,410 in the 1996-97 school years.

The spokesman said: "The tuition fees should be paid in 10 equal instalments and each instalment is to be paid on the first school day of the months from September to June in the following year inclusive.

"Any student admitted during the course of any of these calendar months will be required to pay the full instalment for that month.

"No refund of tuition fees is permissible if a student leaves the centre during the period in respect of which the prescribed fee or instalment of annual fees has been paid." the spokesman said.

The name of any student whose fees remain unpaid 15 days after the due date will be deleted from the register. If such a student, or any other student who leaves a centre without good cause, wants to be re-admitted afterwards, re-admission will date from the time of departure and all arrears of tuition fees will have to be paid.

The newly introduced sixth form course will be operating in four government adult education centres in the 1995-96 school year.

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

Health Education Centre at Kowloon Park *****

The Architectural Services Department is inviting tenders for the construction of a health education exhibition and resource centre at Kowloon Park.

The project involves the conversion of an existing two-storey building into exhibition halls and the construction of a two-storey annex service building and a single-storey switch room including a health garden and landscaping works.

Works arc scheduled to start in mid-August this year for completion by the end of December 1996.

13

Tender forms and further particulars can be obtained from the Architectural Services Department. 34th floor, Queensway Government Offices, 66 Queensway, Hong Kong.

Tender offers for the project will close at noon on July 7.

End/Friday. June 16. 1995

"Parents also Appreciate Teachers" drive ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The "Parents also Appreciate Our Teachers" drive which is a response to the Governor's call to improve teacher's image and the Education Departments Respect Our Teacher" campaign will be launched on Sunday (June 18).

A kick-off ceremony will take place at the I long Kong Cultural Centre.

The chairman of the Home-School Co-operation Committee, Mr Tik Chi-yuen; Executive Council Member Prof Felice Lieh Mak; talk show compere, Mr Albert Cheng King-hon; former Miss Hong Kong, Ms Lo Kam-shing; and renowned soccer coach. Mr Kwok Ka-ming, will officiate at the launching ceremony.

The officiating guests will sign a larger-than-life-size thank-you card at the ceremony for the teachers they appreciate.

Parents have also been invited early this month to join the campaign by conveying their words of appreciation to the teacher they most appreciate. The message collected by Sing Tao Daily News will be manifested on a goodwill card and send to the teacher.

This territory-wide activity is jointly organised by the Education Department and Sing Tao Daily News and sponsored by Grandtel International Limited.

Attention News Editors:

Media representatives are invited to cover the kick-off ceremony of the "Parents Also Respect Our Teachers" campaign which will be held at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza at 2 pm on Sunday.

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

14

New nature trail opens * ♦ ♦ * *

Country park visitors, picnickers or hikers now have an additional destination to appreciate nature or to flex their muscles following the opening of a new nature trail in Sai Kung.

With the addition of the new Tsiu Hang Nature Trail, there are a total of 11 nature trails in the territory. The other 10 are in Tai Mo Shan (Kap Lung), Aberdeen, Shing Mun (Pineapple Dam), Shek Lei Pui (Eagle's Nest), Tai Po Kau, Pak Tam Chung, Pat Sin Leng, Plover Cove (Bride's Pool), Hung Mui Kuk and Tai Tong.

The acting Senior Country Park Development Officer of the Agriculture and Fisheries Department, Dr Yeung Ka-ming, said each of these trails had its uniqueness in relation to nature, vegetation, historical background and scenery attractions.

On the newly-completed Tsiu Hang Nature Trail, Dr Yeung said it was located inside the Lions Nature Education Centre, Sai Kung. It is a circular route of about 650 metres long and takes a visitor about 40 minutes to complete.

The nature trail begins and ends near the entrance to the Chinese Herbal Garden of the Lions Nature Education Centre. Many interesting plants can be found along the trail including Rhus succedanea, China fir, ferns, grass and herbs. Cantor bamboo, Melastoma species and ivy trees.

A number of natural or geographical phenomena can also be seen or felt along the trail. Among them include the symbiosis of plants, soil profile, biological weathering, detritus system, area and species diversity, woodland stratification, decomposition of wood and fire breaks.

On the establishment of nature trails at country parks. Dr Yeung said the idea dated back to the mid-1970s when the first nature trail, Pineapple Dam, was set up in Shing Mun.

"The main objective is to help country park visitors understand flora and fauna as well as village life. It also aims at providing more enjoyment for country park visitors and developing a positive attitude on countryside protection," he said.

Dr Yeung said nature trails were basically self-guided walks. Visitors can move at their chosen speed and take as much time as they like at each stop.

For the enjoyment of others, he reminded visitors not to pick plant specimens or damage natural habitats along each trail.

End/Friday, June 16. 1995

15

Reptiles seized from pet shop *****

The Agriculture and Fisheries Department (AFD) seized a total of 29 endangered reptiles from a Tuen Mun pet shop in an operation yesterday (Thursday).

Following a report from a member of the public and subsequent investigations, officers of AFD's Fauna Conservation Section raided a pct shop in Tuen Mun yesterday afternoon.

A total of 29 reptiles, including tortoises, iguanas and a chameleon, were seized.

The seized reptiles can fetch a market price of around $30,000.

AFD conservation officer Dr So Ping-man said follow-up investigations on the case were still continuing and prosecution would be initiated against the offender if there were sufficient evidence.

Dr So reiterated that any person importing, exporting or possessing any endangered species without a licence issued by the department would have violated the Animals and Plants (Protection of Endangered Species) Ordinance.

"Members of the public should check before purchasing any pet which they suspect to be an endangered species. In case of doubt, do not buy the suspected item and report it to AFD." he said.

Under the ordinance, any person found guilty of importing, exporting or possessing a highly endangered species item without a licence is liable to a maximum fine of $100,000 and one year's imprisonment. If it is used for a commercial purpose, the maximum fine will be a $5 million fine plus two years in jail.

He also reminded members of the public not to bring back endangered species, including their parts or derivatives, on their return from visits to other countries during the long weekend beginning tomorrow (Saturday) because the control measure also applied to travellers.

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

16

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations * * ♦ ♦ ♦

$ million Time (hours) Cumulative change (^million)

Opening balance in the account 1,722 0930 +800

Closing balance in the account 1,714 1000 +800

Change attributable to : 1100 +797

Money market activity +812 1200 +812

LAF today -820 1500 +812

1600 +812

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 *+0.0* 16.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.35 2 years 2705 6.40 101.09 5.87

1 month 5.46 3 years 3804 6.90 102.19 6.14

3 months 5.49 5 years 5006 6.60 99.70 6.78

6 months 5.55 5 years M501 7.90 102.97 7.30

12 months 5.68

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $13,650 million

Closed June 16, 1995

End/Friday, June 16, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Supplement

Friday, June 16,1995

Embargoed news item:

Note to Editors of newspapers, news agencies and broadcasting stations:

The following announcement on the Queen’s birthday honours list will be made in London at 0001 hour GMT on Saturday, June 17.

Publication is permitted in Hong Kong newspapers tomorrow (Saturday, June 17), but no news agency or overseas radio transmission of the announcement may cany the information without the embargo qualification.

The news may be broadcast from 6 am onwards tomorrow (Saturday, June 17) over the local radio and television stations.

On no account should any of the recipients of honours be contacted for interviews, or for information related to their careers, or be approached in any way in connection with their awards before these have been publicly announced.

- 2 -

Birthday Honours 1995

Knight Bachelor OB OB W MB ■» «■•«>«• w

Professor David TODD, CBE, JP

CBE (Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire)

Mr Robert William NOTTLE

Mr Justice Ross Grange PENLINGTON, OBE, AE

Mr Peter Dennis Antony SUTCH

Mr Joseph YAM Chi-kwong, JP

OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire)

Mr James Ernest BUCKLE

Mr Michael David CARTLAND, JP

Professor CHAN Kai-ming

Lady CHEUNG, JP

Professor CHEUNG Yau Kai

His Honourable Judge Anthony Philip DUCKETT, QC

Mr Stuart Hamilton LECKIE, JP

Mr Antony LEUNG Kam Chung, JP

Mr TSENG Cheng, MBE, JP

/MBE

3

MBE (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire)

Mr Gordon Alfred ANDREASSEND, JP

Mr John Robertson BUDGE, JP

Dr Peter Po Fun CHAN, JP

Mr CHAN Shu-min

Mr CHANG Wai-koon

Dr Peter CHENG Jui-shan

Dr York CHOW Yat-ngok

Mr Osmud GHAFUR

Mr Arthur E GOMES

Mr Conrad HO Kong-sang

Mr LAU Cheong Hon, Peter

Mrs Maria LEE TSENG Chiu-kwan

Dr LEUNG Nai-kong

Mr LEUNG Sik-hung

Mrs Joyce LI WONG Siu-yung

Miss LING Yau-kam

Mr Keith Joseph MARSHALL

Mr NG Tat-lun, JP

/Mr Thomas

4

Mr Thomas POON Quing-tong

Miss Teresa SHUM Yuk-kwan

Mr Anthony WAN Hing-yuen

Mrs Katie YANG LEUNG Yin-fong

Mr Jason YUEN King-yuk

MBE (Military)

Major KEUNG Pak-chung

Staff Sergeant NG Yuk-chiu

QPM (Queen’s Police Medal for Distinguished Service)

Mr Peter Wilkin FERRY, CPM

Mr LEUNG Fung-shun, CPM

Mr Denis Leslie SHACKLETON, CPM

Mr James Henry WALKER, CPM

QFSM (Queen’s Fire Service Medal for Distinguished Service)

Mr TSANG Kwong-yu, CPM, JP

/CPM

5

CPM (Colonial Police Medal for Meritorious Service)

Mr Lawrence CHAN Wing-cham

Mr CHAN Wun-pak

Mr Cl IF.lING Shu-tsang

Mr CHEUNG Wang

Mr CHIU Hon-bun

Ms HO So-ping

Mr Gilberto Fernando JORGE

Mr KO Tai-wai

Mr KONG Chi-tim

Mr KWAN Yuk-tong

Mr LAI Kin

Mr LAU Kwai-shan

Mr LAU Shu-lam

Mr LEUNG Chi-kwong

Mr LI Ping-hon

Mr LUK Kam-shing

Mr Anthony Kevin McLOUGHLIN

Mr David PITT

/Mr Julian

6

Mr Julian TAI Kwong-yue

Mr TSOI Chak-lau

Mr TSOI Yu-lum

Mr WONG Kwok-chu

Mr YIU Hon-piu

Mr YU Tai-wai

Mr YUEN Fat-cheong

Badge of Honour

Mr Arthur CHAM Yau-tong

Mr Anson CHENG Kong-ming

Mr CHEUNG Hok-ming

Mr CHEUNG Sing-kucn

Mr CHEUNG Yin-tung

Mr CHOI Luk-sing

Ms Maureen CHU Mau-lam

Mrs HO TO Shui-hing

Mr David IP Siu-vvo

Ms Anita KWAN Miu-mei

Mr KWOK So

/Mr William

7

Mr William LEE Ka-chung

Mr LEUNG Kie-yau

Mr MOK Kwong-fat

Mr Giuseppe SALAROLl

Ms SIN Sau-ping

Mr WONG Chai-lok

Mr WONG Sing

Mr YEUNG Chor-hang

Biographical notes on recipients

Knight Bachelor

Professor David TODD. CBE. .IP

Professor Todd's contribution to academic medicine is internationally recognised and he is equally well known in Hong Kong for his service to the community. He was Chairman of the preparatory committees which established the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine and became the Academy's first Chairman. In addition, he has been a member of the Hospital Authority since that body was created and he is Chairman of the AIDS Trust Fund.

/CBE

8

CBE

Mr Robert William NOTTLE

Mr Nottle was the Deputy Chairman of the Securities and Futures Commission from 1989 to 1992 and Chairman from 1992 until recently when he left to return to his native Australia. During his tenure of office the Commission managed an increasingly complex portfolio and underwent considerable reorganisation and development. Mr Nottle now works in the Australian Stock Exchange in Melbourne.

Mr Justice Ross Grange PENLINGTON. OBE, AE

Mr Justice Penlington retired in May 1995 having completed 31 years' service with the Legal Department and the Judiciary. He became a Judge of the High Court in 1980 and a Justice of Appeal in 1988. He was Chairman of the Air Transport Licensing Authority and was also active in voluntary and community service.

Mr Peter Dennis Antony SUTCI1

Mr Sutch was Managing Director of Cathay Pacific Airways and became Chairman in 1992. He has overseen the Airline's development from regional to intercontinental carrier. He also has an extensive record of public and community service which has included the Governor's Business Council, the Trade Development Council and several charitable causes.

Mr Joseph YAM Chi-kwong. JP

Mr Yam was appointed Chief Executive of the newly formed Hong Kong Monetary Authority in 1992 following 21 years' service with the Hong Kong Government. Mr Yam has also been a member of a number of boards and committees, including the Mass Transit Railway Corporation and the Provisional Airport Authority.

/OBE....

9

OBE

Mr James Ernest BUCKLE

A former United Kingdom police officer, Mr Buckle joined the Operations Department of the IC AC in 1975. He became Head of Operations and Deputy Commissioner in 1992 and has been involved in many high profile investigations. He was also responsible for establishing the ICAC's internal investigation and monitoring group.

Mr Michael David CARTLAND, JP

Mr Cartland joined the Hong Kong Government in 1972 after a period in the then British Solomon Islands. He has spent much of his service dealing with external commercial relations, he was Director of Social Welfare from 1990 to 1993 and was appointed Secretary for Monetary Affairs, now retitled Secretary for Financial Services, in 1993.

Professor CHAN Kai-ming

Professor Chan is Chairman of the Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. He has been closely involved with the development of sports medicine, the establishment at the Prince of Wales Hospital of the first sports injury clinic in Hong Kong and the setting up of the Hong Kong Centre of Sports Medicine and Sports Science.

Lady CHEUNG, JP (Pauline CHEUNG CHENG Po-lin)

Apart from six years as a solicitor in private practice. Lady Cheung has spent her entire career in the field of legal aid. She joined Government service in 1968 as an Assistant Registrar. Supreme Court (Legal Aid), one year after the legal aid scheme was introduced in Hong Kong. She was appointed Director of Legal Aid in 1993.

/Professor CHEUNG......

10

Professor CHEUNG Yau Kai

Professor Cheung is Taikoo Professor of Engineering and Pro Vice Chancellor of the University of Hong Kong. In addition to his academics duties he has been a member of a number of professional bodies and committees, including the Land and Building Advisory Committee and the Consultative Committee on the New Airport and Related Projects. He is a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

His Honourable Judge Anthony Philip DUCKETT, QC

Mr Duckett served in the Legal Department for 23 years, including 20 years in the Prosecutions Division where he became Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions. He was acting Solicitor General from January 1993 to his recent retirement from the Hong Kong Government service and his appointment as a Judge of the County Court, Victoria, Australia.

Mr Stuart Hamilton LECKIE, JP

Mr Leckie is an actuary who has been a member of a number of public bodies and committees, including the Committees on Unit Trusts and the Investment-linked Assurance and Pooled Retirement Funds. He has been a director of the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union since 1990 and its Chairman from 1992.

Mr Antony LEUNG Kam Chung, JP

In 1992 Mr Leung became the first Hong Kong resident to be appointed to head the Citibank's operations in Hong Kong and the People's Republic of China. In addition to his banking career, Mr Leung has an extensive record of public service: he is, among other posts. Chairman of the University Grants Committee, a member of the Exchange Fund Advisory Committee and the Provisional Airport Authority.

/Mr TSENG

11

Mr TSENG Cheng. MBE, JP

Mr Tseng has been involved in community work in I long Kong for nearly 40 years. He has been Vice-Chairman of the Tuberculosis, Chest and Heart Diseases Association since 1975. and he was closely involved in the redevelopment of the Ruttonjee 1 lospital. I Ie has also had a long association with the l ung Wah Group of Hospitals and has served on a number of government advisory bodies and appeal boards.

MBE

Mr Gordon Alfred ANDREASSEND, JP

Mr Andreassend joined the Government service in 1966 as a Land Surveyor and was appointed Principal Government Land Surveyor in 1993. He was the founding member and first President of the Hong Kong Institute of Land Surveyors. I Ie will retire in October.

Mr John Robertson BUDGE, JP

Mr Budge has been involved in voluntary work for rehabilitation for over 15 years and became Chairman of the Hong Kong Association for the Mentally Handicapped in 1987. He is also Honorary Secretary of St James's Settlement and a member of the Rehabilitation Development Co-ordinating Committee.

Dr Peter Po Fun CHAN. JP

Dr Chan has been a volunteer member of the Board of Management of the Chinese Permanent Cemeteries since 1967 and Chairman of' the Board's Finance Committee since 1970. He is also a past Chairman of the Po Leung Kuk and a member of the Po Leung Kuk Advisory Board.

/Mr CHAN...

12

Mr CHAN Shu-min

Mr Chan joined Government service in 1959 as a photographer in the Registration of Persons Office and he was transferred to the Immigration Department in 1977. where he has remained ever since. He is highly experienced in all aspects of photographic and microfilming work.

Mr CHANG Wai-koon

Mr Chang joined the Government Supplies Department in 1957. From 1981 to 1988 he was responsible for developing the computer systems for stores management and since 1990 he has been head of the Procurement Division. He will retire in September.

Dr Peter CHENG Jui-shan

The Managing Director of a naval architecture and marine consultancy company. Dr Cheng has served for the last 15 years on a number of international shipping committees. He is closely involved with the Hong Kong Shipping register and chairs the Vocational Training Council's Shipbuilding. Shiprepair and Offshore Engineering Training Board.

Dr York CHOW Yat-ngok

Dr Chow is an orthopaedics and traumatology specialist and he is active in the field of sports for the physically disabled. I Ie was Vice-President and later President of the Hong Kong Association of Sports Medicine and Sports Science. Vice-Chairman of the Sports Institute and Sports Development Boards and a member of a number of international sports bodies for the physically disabled.

/Mr ()smud....

13

Mr Osmud GHAFUR

Mr Ghafur is a Chief Executive Officer in the Hong Kong Government service and he has been Departmental Secretary of the Immigration Department since 1986. His tour with the Department has spanned an exceptionally busy period which included the move of the Headquarters to the Wanchai Tower II in 1991. Mr Ghafur joined the civil service in 1959.

Mr Arthur E GOMES

Mr Gomes served in the Hong Kong Volunteers, fought in the battle for Hong Kong and was a prisoner of war from December 1941 to August 1945. He has been the Secretary and Treasurer of the Hong Kong POW Association since 1975. He edits a monthly newsletter on POW affairs and is responsible for arranging all the Association's social and commemorative events.

Mr Conrad HO Kong-sang

Mr Ho joined the Hong Kong Government service in 1959 and is now a Senior Superintendent with the Customs and Excise Department. Much of his work has been with Dutiable Commodities Division: he led a working party which led to the introduction of an open bond system and in 1994 he took over the work of valuation for the first registration tax of motor vehicles.

Mr LAU Cheong Hon, Peter

Mr Lau is a Chief Medical Technologist with the I long Kong Government and became head of the Medical Laboratory Technician grade in 1981. He was a founding member, and later Chairman of the Institute of Medical Laboratory Sciences and is also a long time volunteer member of the Auxiliary Medical Service.

/Mrs Maria....

14

Mrs Maria LEE TSENG Chiu-kwan

Mrs Lee became well known through her television cookery classes and she later established Maria’s Bakery. In 1985, in company with Mrs Katie Yang, she set up the Kwan Fong Charitable Foundation Ltd which has raised considerable sums for Hong Kong charities. She has also been active in many other areas of community and charity work.

Dr LEUNG Nai-kong

Dr Leung is a consultant Paediatrician, and for the last 20 years he has done extensive voluntary work to assist chronically sick and disabled children, especially the victims of cancer and cerebral palsy. He has assisted with the establishment of'a wide range of rehabilitation services and is also a member of the Hospital Authority.

Mr LEUNG Sik-hung

Mr Leung joined the Hong Kong Government service in 1957 and was promoted to Senior Clerical Officer in 1983. His entire career has been spent in the former Medical and Health Department and later in the Health Department where he was posted to the headquarters to assist in establishing the Salaries and Allowances Section.

Mrs Joyce LI WONG Siu-yung

Mrs Li joined the Hong Kong Government as a Registered Nurse in 1967. Her entire career has been spent caring for mentally ill and severely mentally retarded patients, and for the last 12 years she has worked at Siu Lam Hospital. She has always been a front-line member of the staff, providing direct care for patients.

/Miss LING

15

Miss LING Yau-kam

Miss Ling has worked for the Hong Kong Government for over 27 years. She has held a number of very demanding posts during her career and her current appointment is a Personal Assistant to the Chairman of the Public Service Commission.

Mr Keith Joseph MARSHALL

Mr Marshall has now retired after 30 years as the Director of the Ebenezer School and Home for the Blind. He has contributed to the development of social services to the blind and the handicapped through his involvement with Hong Kong and international agencies and his membership of numerous Government working parties.

Mr NG Tat-lun, JP

An industrialist, Mr Ng has served on a wide range of Government advisory boards and statutory organisations. He has played a particularly prominent role in the advancement of technology, especially in the metals industry, and in the promotion of quality assurance.

Mr Thomas POON Quing-tong

Mr Poon joined the Hong Kong Government service as a land assistant in 1960 and in 1992 he was promoted to Principal Land Executive, the highest ranking member of the Land Executive Grade. He has been associated with the development of the New Territories throughout his career and he has also undertaken a variety of community work.

/Miss Teresa.....

16

Miss Teresa SHUM Yuk-kwan

Miss Shum joined the Hong Kong Government nearly 27 years ago and now holds the rank of Senior Personal Assistant. She has been Senior Personal Assistant to the Financial Secretary' for the last eight years and has now worked for three different Financial Secretaries.

Mr Anthony WAN Hing-yuen

A school principal. Mr Wan has a long record of voluntary community service. His activities have included sports management and training - in particular soccer and wushu - and he has been a member of the Board of Directors of Hong Kong Jubilee Sports Centre. He has also been an Assessor for the Council for Performing Arts since 1988.

Mrs Katie YANG LEUNG Yin-fong

Mrs Katie Yang was famous as Fong Yim Fun. the leading Cantonese opera star in the immediate Post War years. In 1985, in company with Maria Lee (of Maria's Bakery), she established the Kwan Fong Charitable Foundation Ltd and came out of retirement to perform live and to record in order to raise funds for the Foundation. Her work has resulted in major donations to a large number of charities.

Mr Jason YUEN King-yuk

Mr Yuen became a member of the Antiquities Advisory Board in 1977 and was appointed the first Unofficial Chairman of the Antiquities Advisory Board formed in 1986. He became a member of the Urban Council in 1989 where his professional qualifications as an architect enabled him to advise on several major projects.

/Military Division.......

17

Military Division

Major KEUNG Pak-chung

Major Keung joined the Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers) in 1968 and was commissioned in 1976. From 1984 he commanded two squadrons and was appointed Honorary Aide- de-Camp to the Governor, a post he held until 1992. His final post was Officer Commanding Training Squadron following which he transferred to the Reserve of Officers.

Staff Sergeant NG Yuk-chiu

Staff Sergeant Ng joined HMS Newfoundland as a Mess Boy in 1955 at the age of 18 and, apart from a three year break when he worked at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, he has served in the military continuously. After leaving the Yacht Club in 1981 he joined the Royal Hong Kong Regiment where he has been Head Steward in the Officers Mess.

QPM

Mr Peter Wilkin FERRY. CPM

Mr Ferry joined the Force in 1963 and was promoted Chief Superintendent in 1988. During his career he has served in the Uniform Branch. Special Branch and in crime formations. He was appointed District Commander Yau Ma Tei in 1990.

Mr LEUNG Fung-shun, CPM

Mr Leung has been a member of the Force since 1964 and was promoted Assistant Commissioner in 1994. He has wide experience in the Uniform Branch and crime stream and was seconded to the UK Police Staff College for two years. He took command of the newly established Security Wing in 1994.

/Mr Denis....

18

Mr Denis Leslie SHACKLETON, CPM

Mr Shackleton has nearly 28 years' service in the Force and was promoted Assistant Commissioner in 1994. He has undertaken a wide range of operational and staff duties, including Aide-de-Camp to the Governor. He became Deputy Director of Force Training in 1994.

Mr James Henry WALKER, CPM

Mr Walker has been a member of the Force since 1966 and was promoted Assistant Commissioner in 1994. His entire career has been spent in Uniform Branch and he has commanded the Complaints Against the Police Office. His current post is Assistant Commissioner, Support Wing.

QFSM

Mr TSANG Kwong-yu, CPM, JP

Mr Tsang joined the Fire Services Department in 1964 and was promoted Chief Fire Officer in 1992. He has wide experience in the Operational, Headquarters and Fire Protection Commands. As a Fire Chief he has been involved in many hazardous and difficult operations.

CPM

Mr Lawrence CHAN Wing-cham

Mr Chan joined the Force in 1961 and reached his present rank of Superintendent in 1982. He has served in Uniform Branch, crime, administration and traffic posts across the full range of formation levels. An accomplished linguist, he was seconded from 1980 to 1982 to Interpol in Paris.

/Mr CHAN.....

19

Mr CHAN Wun-pak

Mr Chan joined the Force in 1957, was promoted Station Sergeant in 1982 and is scheduled to retire in December this year. His first nine years were spent in the Uniform Branch and he was then transferred to the crime stream where he has remained. He has also been engaged in police welfare activities.

Mr CHEUNG Shu-tsang

Mr Cheung has completed nearly 32 years' service in the force and reached his present rank of Station Sergeant in 1979. His entire career has been spent in the Uniform Branch. He has taken a close interest in Force affairs and welfare and in 1994 he was elected Chairman of the Junior Police Officers' Association.

Mr CHEUNG Wang

Mr Cheung joined the Fire Services Department in 1964 and became a Principal Fireman in 1986. The majority of his service has been in the Operational Command, he is a very experienced Non-Commissioned Officer and has attended many major incidents.

Mr CHIU Hon-bun

Mr Chiu entered the Force in 1969 and reached his present rank of Superintendent in 1991. Initially he served in posts in the Uniform Branch. Traffic, the Police Tactical Unit and Special Branch, but most of his career has been in operational posts in the crime stream. He is currently Deputy Commander. Airport District.

Ms HO So-ping

Ms Ho has served in the Force for 32 years and was promoted Station Sergeant in 1981. She was in the Narcotics Bureau for several years and is currently posted in Western District where she is involved in promoting and organising district welfare activities.

/Mr Gilberto.......

20

Mr Gilberto Fernando JORGE

Mr Jorge joined the Force in 1964 and was promoted Senior Superintendent in 1993. He is an experienced Uniform Branch officer and has served in a wide range of formations and areas. He is currently Deputy Commander. Eastern District.

Mr KO Tai-wai

Mr Ko has been a member of the Force since 1965 and reached his present rank of Station Sergeant in 1985. He served for five years in the Narcotics Bureau followed by postings to a number of regional and district crime units. He is also the welfare representative for his current formation.

Mr KONG Chi-tim

Mr Kong became a member of the Force in 1966 and was promoted Station Sergeant in 1980. He started his service in Uniform Branch and was then transferred to the Narcotics Bureau, followed by postings in crime formations. In 1984 he was transferred to the Organised Crime and Triad Bureau where he has remained.

Mr KWAN Yuk-tong

Mr Kwan joined the Fire Services Department as an Ambulanceman in 1967 and reached his present rank of Principal Ambulanceman in 1978. In addition to his operational duties he has served as an ambulance supervisor and as a training instructor in the Training School of the Ambulance Command.

Mr LAI Kin

Mr Lai has served in the Force for 32 years and was made a Station Sergeant in 1980. He served in a number of Uniform Branch posts before being assigned to the Enforcement .and Control Unit. Traffic, Hong Kong Island where he has remained, undertaking a range of different responsibilities.

/MrLAU........

21 -

Mr LAU Kwai-shan

Mr Lau joined the Fire Services Department in 1971 after two years with the Urban Services Department and he was promoted Senior Divisional Officer in 1992; He has served in various echelons of the Operational, Fire Protection and Headquarters Commands and has been in command at a number of major fire and rescue incidents.

Mr LAU Shu-lam

Mr Lau has served in the Fire Services Department since 1970, joining initially as an Assistant Station Officer. He was promoted Senior Divisional Officer in 1991 and has experience in all the commands. He has also been in charge at numerous major fires.

Mr LEUNG Chi-kwong

Mr Leung spent 32 years in the Force and reached the rank of Station Sergeant in 1978. His entire service was spent in the Uniform Branch and his last seven years were in the Yau Ma Tei Division. He retired in January 1995.

Mr LI Ping-hon

Mr Li joined the Force in 1960 and was promoted Station Sergeant in 1977. He served exclusively in the Uniform Branch and retired in February 1995. His last three years were spent in the Tin Shui Wai Division as Operation Support Sub-Unit Commander.

• , • ? 4 ■ * ’ • • . • t 4

Mr LUK Kam-shing

Mr Luk entered the Force in 1963 and reached his present rank of Station Sergeant in 1977. He spent his entire career in the Marine Region and since 1985 he has been responsible for conducting firing courses at the Marine Police Regional Range Unit.

/Mr Anthony.....

22

Mr Anthony Kevin McLOUGHLIN

Mr McLoughlin has been a member of the Force since 1970 and was promoted Senior Superintendent in 1991. He has served in a variety of different formations and he was a member of the Working Group for the 150th Anniversary of the Force. Since 1993 he has been Deputy Commandant of the Police Training School.

Mr David PITT

Mr Pitt joined the Force in 1965 and reached his present rank of Senior Superintendent in 1986. He spent some time in crime formations and in Special Branch, but much of his service has been in Traffic posts. His present post is Senior Staff Officer, Traffic New Territories North.

Mr Julian TAI Kwong-yue

Mr Tai has served in the Force in the rank of Inspector since 1962. In his early career he filled posts in the Uniform Branch, Identification Bureau and Crime formations. In 1978 he was assigned to the Police Public Relations Branch where he has been Staff Inspector in the Reception Section for the last 17 years.

Mr TSOI Chak-lau

Mr Tsoi entered the Force in 1966 and reached his present rank of Station Sergeant in 1984. He has remained in the Uniform Branch throughout his career and for the last eight years he has commanded the Wong Tai Sin District Traffic Team. He is the Junior Police Officers' Association District Representative and Vice-Chairman of the Kowloon East Region Association Committee.

/Mr TSOI

23

Mr TSOI Yu-lum

Mr Tsoi joined the Fire Services Department in 1968 and was promoted Senior Divisional Officer in 1990. An experienced officer, he has served in all the commands of the Department and his present post is Officer-in-Charge of the mobilising and control centre.

Mr WONG Kwok-chu

Mr Wong entered the Force in 1962 and reached the rank of Station Sergeant in 1979. He is a Uniform Branch officer who has served almost exclusively in the Kowloon Region and his current post is in Traffic Kowloon. He retires this month.

Mr YIU Hon-piu

Mr Yiu has been a member of the Force for 32 years and was promoted Station Sergeant in 1977. His first three years were spent in the Uniform Branch after which he was transferred to crime duties where he has served in a wide variety of posts. He is currently second-in-charge of the Kwai Tsing District Crime Squad.

Mr YU Tai-wai

Mr Yu joined the Force in 1963 and rose to his present rank of Station Sergeant in 1980. His entire service has been spent in the Uniform Branch where he has carried out a considerable range of duties. He was posted to Sha Tin District in 1992 for general Uniform duties and is scheduled to retire in October 1995.

Mr YUEN Fat-cheong

Mr Yuen entered the Force in 1965 and became a Station Sergeant in 1980. He served in a number of different posts in the Uniform Branch and Crime Stream and he retired in January 1995. His final appointment was with the Tseung Kwan O Division as Duty Officer and later Sub-Unit Commander.

/Badge of....

24

Badge of Honour

Mr Arthur CHAM Yau-tong

Mr Cham was first elected to the Wan Chai District Board in 1985 and has been involved in many community activities connected with transport, the environment, the arts, care of the elderly and youth programmes.

Mr Anson CHENG Kong-ming

Mr Cheng has been active in a wide range of community activities in the Wan Chai District for several years. He has served on two area committees and his interests have included building management, traffic and transport and youth activities.

Mr CHEUNG Hok-ming

Mr Cheung is a villager from Lam Tsuen and has served the Tai Po rural community for 13 years. He has been a member of the Tai Po District Board since 1985.

Mr CHEUNG Sing-kuen

Mr Cheung was Chairman of the Sze Shan Area Committee in the Kwun Tong District from 1981 to 1991 and continues to contribute to community affairs. His interests have included the District Fight Crime Committee and sports promotion.

Mr CHEUNG Yin-tung

Mr Cheung has been engaged in volunteer and youth services for four years. He has been a member of the Commission on Youth since 1990 and from 1992 to 1994 he was a member of the Working Party on Review of Children and Youth Centre Service.

/Mr CHOI......

25

Mr CHOI Luk-sing

Mr Choi has over 20 years community service to the Wong Tai Sin District. He became a member of the District Board in 1988 and has been particularly active in rehousing and squatter related problems and in promoting young people’s welfare.

’’ ... V ’

Ms Maureen CHU Mau-lam

Ms Chu is a community leader in Tsuen Wan District and became a member of the District Board in 1991. She chaired the Tsuen Wan Central Area Committee and was also engaged in District cultural and arts activities.

Mrs HO TO Shui-hing

Mrs Ho has served on the Board of Directors of the Yan Chai Hospital since 1986 and was the Chairlady in 1994-95. Under her stewardship the Hospital's multi-services social welfare project was started and is scheduled for completion in 1997. ’A ’ • '

Mr David IP Siu-wo «■**■«■**■■ e 9

Mr Ip is an experienced educationalist in the field of the mentally handicapped and the principal of a special school. He is a member of a number of Government community service committees and active in promoting sports for the handicapped.

Ms Anita KWAN Miu-mei

Ms Kwan has been a member of the Yau Tsim District Board since 1985 and has taken a close interest in culture and the arts, in particular Chinese opera and drama. She has also been involved in a range of community activities.

/Mr KWOK

26

Mr KWOK So

A fisherman, Mr Kwok has been active in the industry's co-operative movements and the promotion of fishermen's welfare. He has also been a member of a large number of Government committees and other bodies connected with fishing.

Mr William LEE Ka-chung

Mr Lee has been engaged in community service in the Yuen Long District for several years, especially in scouting, the St John Ambulance Association, sports and the arts. He was Chairman of the Pok Oi Hospital Board for the 1994-95 term.

Mr LEUNG Kie-yau

Mr Leung has been involved in several organisations promoting community activities in Sham Shui Po district. His work has included the district festival, the arts, recreational services, the Community Chest, fight crime and the Industrial Liaison Committee.

Mr MOK Kwong-fat

Mr Mok has contributed to community service in the Hong Kong Island Region for nearly 40 years. He has been a Civil Aid Services volunteer member since 1957 and is qualified to instruct Cadet Corps members in a wide range of outdoor activities.

Mr Giuseppe SALAROLI

Bom in Italy, Mr Salaroli has lived in Hong Kong for nearly 30 years and has been a member of the Eastern District Board since 1982. He has been an active member of a number of many of the Board's working groups and committees.

/Ms SIN

27

Ms SIN Sau-ping

Ms Sin was one of the first volunteer ladies to join the newly formed Civil Aid Services in 1952 and has spent the whole of her CAS career in the Hong Kong Island Region. Her husband was also a member of the CAS and her three children joined the Service.

Mr WONG Chai-lok

Mr Wong is a retired school principal and has been active in educational, cultural and arts activities for 45 years. He served as a part-time lecturer at the Hong Kong University and has also been involved in scouting since 1960.

Mr WONG Sing *

OB«B ■* MBSW•

Mr Wong has served on the Boards of Director of several schools for many years. He has also worked in the scouting movement and has been a member of the Board of Directors of both the Pok Oi Hospital and the Yan Oi Tong.

Mr YEUNG Chor-hang

For the last 10 years Mr Yeung has served on a number of Government bodies and committees. Since 1992 he has been Chairman of the Lok Sin Tong Benevolent Society, Kowloon and Chairman of the Kowloon City District Council for the Welfare and Recreation of the Elderly.

/Birthday Honours.....

28

Birthday Honours 1995 Other Hong Kong residents honoured on the Diplomatic and Overseas List

CBE

Mr Nigel Mervyn Sutherland RICH

Mr Rich joined Jardines in 1974, became Chief Executive Officer of Hong Kong Land in 1986 and Managing Director of Jardine Matheson from 1989 until his appointment as Chief Executive of Trafalgar House in August 1994. He returned to the UK in 1994.

OBE

; • . -

Mr Peter Yeu Shou PUN

Mr Pun established his own practice in Hong Kong as a Consulting Engineer in 1964. He is now Chairman and Chief Executive of the successor to the original practice.

MBE

Mr George Wai Ching YAN.

Mr Yan has been a Crown Servant since May 1961 when he was employed as a driver by the UK Regional Information Office in Hong Kong. He was transferred to the British Trade Commission Office in October 1976 and was later promoted to Clerk.

/Birthday Honours.....

29

Birthday Honours 1995 Military Division

Following is the list of the honours to military personnel in Hong Kong:

MBE

Lieutenant Colonel RI Buckley of The Royal Signals

Captain LAM Ping Wai of The Hong Kong Military Service Corps

Major (QGO) Khagendrabahadur Limbu MVO of The Royal Gurkha Rifles

Warrant Officer Class Two N J Sullivan of the Adjutant Generals Corps (Staff Personnel Support)

Major KEUNG Pak-chung of The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers)

Staff Sergeant NG Yuk-chiu of The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers)

Notes on ricipients

Lieutenant Colonel R I Buckley of The Royal Signals

Awarded the MBE for outstanding performance over a long and successful career. In particular the key role he played in the reorganisation of Sek Kong Station and his work in the local military community make him most deserving of this award.

Captain LAM Ping Wai of The Hong Kong Military Service Corps

Awarded the MBE for exceptional levels of personal commitment, enthusiasm and success over 22 years' service. As Adjutant of the Volunteers he has made a major contribution and richly deserves this award.

/Major (QGO).......

- 30 -

•:i

Major (QGO) Khagendrabahadur Limbu MVO of The Royal Gurkha Rifles

Awarded the MBE for his outstanding work as the Senior Gurkha Major of the brigade during a most difficult period of drawdown and redundancy. By example, dedication and leadership he ensured the well-being of the wide range of troops for whom he was responsible.

Warrant Officer Class Two N J Sullivan of The Adjutant Generals Corps (Staff Personnel Support)

Awarded the MBE for outstanding dedication and hard work whilst employed in Headquarters British Forces in a key clerical role. He moulded together a triservice, tri-national and multi agency organisation with considerable success.

.. . ii ' i ’ '

Major KEUNG Pak-chung of The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers)

Awarded the MBE for over 26 years’ commitment and outstanding service with the Volunteers. In every appointment he has held he has proved to be exemplary and has always achieved far more than could have been expected.

Staff Sergeant NG Yuk-chiu of The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers)

Awarded the MBE for over 40 years’ outstanding and dedicated service in support of the Crown. His role in recent years as the Head Steward in the Officers’ mess of the Volunteers where he has never missed a day's work has been quite exceptional both in barracks and when deployed in the field.

Yi :• .>• > ... . . •;»

----0----


DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Saturday, June 17,1995

Contents Page No.

Agreement with waste collection truck drivers reached....................... 1

AIDS hotline adds new features.............................................. 2

Employees entitled to statutory leave....................................... 2

Young violinist to attend international music camp.......................... 3

Sunday, June 18,1995

Contents EageJSe.

Licence application deadline for wastewater dischargers................... 5

About 1,500 removal orders issued......................................... 6

Country park and conservation information on computer..................... 7

Exhibition taken to NT and Kowloon................................. 8

Water cuts in Sai Kung and Sha Tin................................. 10

Monday, June 19,1995

Contents PagoNtex

Students advised to check before enrolment....................... 11

1

Agreement with waste collection truck drivers reached ♦ * ♦ ♦ ♦

The Government today (Saturday) reached an agreement with private waste collection truck drivers to end their blockade of the landfills.

■ <

At today's meeting with the truck drivers, the Deputy Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Tony Cooper, agreed that a working group comprising representatives from the Government, the truck drivers and waste producers will be formed to discuss the mechanics to introduce the charging scheme.

Charges will not be introduced until a mutually acceptable agreement is reached. The regulations on the charging scheme will go forward in the Legislative Council as scheduled next Wednesday. But the commencement date of charging will not be gazetted until there is an agreement.

In return, the drivers agreed to end their industrial action immediately and will enter into negotiations with the other parties in good faith.

Mr Cooper said: " We are looking forward to some useful and constructive discussions to resolve the payment issue sensibly."

He thanked the Urban Services and Regional Services Departments and other parties concerned for making temporary arrangement to receive refuse during the industrial action by the drivers.

In order to clear the backlog of refuse, the opening hours of the three blockaded landfills, namely Southeast NT, Shuen Wan, and Pillar Point Valley which receive privately collected waste will be extended until midnight today. If necessary, the opening hours of the Southeast NT Landfill will be further extended until the backlog is cleared.

End/Saturday, June 17, 1995

- 2‘ -

AIDS hotline adds new features * * ♦ ♦

Members of the public can now listen to a range of pre-recorded messages in Putonghua on AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases through the AIDS Hotline -2780 2211 - run by the Department of Health. >:■

- ■*'' >•

A spokesman for the department said a caller to the hotline could choose to listen to messages in 'English, Cantonese or Putonghua, receive a fax copy of the messages in English or Chinese, or talk to a counsellor.

' He said a new message on AIDS and the Travellers was introduced in June and a caller now had seven pre-recorded messages on AIDS to choose from.

<S. -

The spokesman said a caller could choose to listen to any of the pre-recorded messages on specific areas of his concern by simply pressing the pre-defined buttons.

Besides English and Chinese, people speaking Thai, Vietnamese and Tagalog may listen to four pre-recorded AIDS messages on a separate telephone line - 2359 9112.

The AIDS Hotline was computerised to improve service in 1993 and expanded to provide pre-recorded messages on sexually transmitted diseases in February this year.

The hotline received about 12,000 calls each month. •»>«•

End/Saturday, June 17, 1995

" • ■ .<7..

•:< Employees entitled to statutory leave ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ 4 . J

The Labour Department today (Saturday) reminded employers to grant their employees 11 statutory holidays as required by the Employment Ordinance.

ACMDC Ventures Incorporated at Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui; was recently fined a total of $12,000 at Western Magistracy after pleading guilty to three summonses for failing to grant statutory holidays to an imported worker.

I

- 3 -

Labour Officer (Prosecutions), Mrs Tonia Leung, said under the Employment Ordinance, all employees, irrespective of their wage levels, were entitled to statutory holidays and had to be paid for the day off if they had worked continuously for the same employer for three months or longer immediately before the statutory holiday.

"Holiday pay should be equivalent to an employee's earnings on a full working day. Where the earnings vary from day to day, holiday pay should be the average daily earnings during every complete wage period, comprising not less than 28 days and not more than 31 days preceding the holiday," she explained.

"If an employee is required to work on a statutory holiday, he must be given an alternative day off within 60 days before or after that day," Mrs Leung added.

Any employer who fails to grant statutory leave to an employee is liable to a maximum fine of $10,000.

End/Saturday, June 17, 1995

Young violinist to attend international music camp ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

An 18-year-old violin player, Cheng Ka-ming, who has been selected by the Music Office of the Recreation and Culture Branch to represent Hong Kong to attend the 1995 World Youth Symphony Orchestra Interlochen Arts Camp in Michigan. I ISA. this summer, will leave Hong Kong on June 23 (Friday).

Cheng has made remarkable achievements in music in the past few years. He was the Champion in Violin Sonata Class and Violin Concerto Class in the 1992 Hong Kong Schools Music Festival, the first runner-up in the 1993 Commercial Radio Prize, and the 1993 Student Musician of the Year organised by South China Morning Post.

Currently, he is the concertmaster of the Hong Kong Youth Symphony Orchestra and the La Salle College School Orchestra.

"It is really exciting that 1 can have the opportunity to participate in the Interlochen Arts Camp and to meet young musicians from different countries in the coming two months," he said.

- 4 -

"I am looking forward to staging concerts together with renowned musicians and I would do my best to introduce Hong Kong to other campers," he added.

The music camp, to be held from June 25 to August 21, is aimed at promoting friendship among young musicians aged between 14 and 18 through music.

The eight-week intensive training will include master classes and workshops conducted by renowned musicians. In addition, recreational activities such as sing-a-song round camp fires, canoeing and swimming will be arranged.

The camp fee will be met by organisers while the round-trip air passage will be jointly sponsored by Cathay Pacific Airways and the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club Music Fund.

End/Saturday, June 17, 1995

9

- 5 -

Licence application deadline for wastewater dischargers *****

Existing dischargers of wastewater from industrial, commercial and institutional activities in Phase I of the Victoria Harbour Water Control Zone are reminded to obtain a licence for their discharges before July I this year.

Assistant Director of the Environmental Protection Department (EPD), Mr John Boxall, said: ’’The said water control zone, which became effective on November 1 last year, covers Kwun Tong, Kwai Chung and the eastern part of Tsuen Wan.

"Dischargers in these areas who do not have a licence and whose discharges does not meet the required standards after July 1 will be liable for prosecution.

"The maximum fine for discharging polluting matter into the water control zone is $200,000 for the first offence and $400,000 for any subsequent offence. Offenders may also be liable to six months' imprisonment."

Mr Boxall urged dischargers who have not yet submitted applications to make licence applications early and to provide or improve treatment of their discharges to meet the required standards.

"The EPD has informed dischargers of the requirements of the legislation, verbally and in writing as well as sending them a copy of the information booklet.

"Four seminars informing the public about the legislation have also been held in the past months," he said.

Dischargers can contact the EPD's Local Control Offices on 2755 5518 (for Kwun Tong area) and 2417 6150 (for Tsuen Wan and Kwai Chung areas) for enquiries on licensing and controls. Trade dischargers can also contact the Environmental Hotline on 2788 9696 operated by the Centre of Environmental Technology for information and advice on environmental regulations and methods to control pollution.

End/Sunday, June 18. 1995

- 6 -

About 1,500 removal orders issued ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Control and Enforcement Division of the Buildings Department has served a total of 1,488 orders from January to April this year for the removal of unauthorised building works, including 77 cases for removal of illegal rooftop structures.

The Assistant Director/Control of the department, Mr Lok Che-leung, said the department had received 2,527 complaints and its staff had carried out 6,765 inspection during the same period.

Last year, a total of 4,890 orders were issued following 7,596 complaints received. Of these complaints, with about 1,600 or 20 per cent were on illegal rooftop structures.

As a result, a total of 232 illegal rooftop structures were demolished with 80 per cent of these structures demolished by the owners themselves.

Illegal rooftop structures are common in old urban areas like Central and Western districts, North Point and Shau Kei Wan on Hong Kong Island; Sham Shui Po, Mong Kok and Kwun Tong in Kowloon; and Tsuen Wan and Kwai Tsing in the New Territories.

Contrary to popular belief, Mr Lok said, rooftop illegal structures formed but one among the many categories of unauthorised building works tackled by the department.

Any building works carried out to any part of a building without the prior approval and consent of the Building Authority are defined as unauthorised building works and have to be demolished. Mr Lok said.

However, new unauthorised building works, work-in-progress cases, and unauthorised building works causing fire, health or structural hazard will be awarded high priority status requiring their removal.

"Our prime concern is building safety," he said. "Once an unauthorised building work of high priority is identified, an order will be issued under Buildings Ordinance Section 24 prescribing the date and the removal of the specified works by the building owner."

7

He added that non-compliance of the ordinance is a criminal-offence and is liable to prosecution. On conviction, the owner is liable to a maximum penalty of two years imprisonment and a fine of $100,000. In the case of continuing offence, a daily fine of $5,000 will be imposed.

A total of 22 convictions have been obtained from January to April this year resulting in $0.31 million fines. Last year, there were 55 convictions resulting in about $1 million fines.

Mr Lok advised owners to apply to the Building Authority through an Authorised Person before embarking on constructing any additions and alterations to their buildings.

"If they failed to do so, they are wasting their own money as any such unauthorised works will have to be demolished in the end," he said.

End/Sunday, June 18, 1995

Country park and conservation information on computer *****

With a touch on the computer screen at country park visitor centres, members of the public can now get more information on the territory's country parks and conservation matters through interesting games and lively computer presentations.

The newly-designed "Country Parks and Conservation Information System" has just become operational at the territory's seven country park visitor centres. The system has incorporated beautiful country park sceneries, educational information and interesting quiz all in one programme.

The Agriculture and Fisheries Department's acting Senior Country Park Development Officer, Dr Yeung Ka-ming, said the new system was set up to facilitate visitors to look for interesting information concerning country parks and conservation during stops-over at the centres.

Available in both Cantonese and English, the new system consists of a three-segment programme. Dr Yeung said.

The first segment is on Hong Kong’s country parks in general. Visitors can view beautiful sceneries of the territory’s country parks, which are divided into six major regions according to their location, in the computer programme.

The second segment is about knowledge on country parks and nature conservation. It comprises six major areas: including tree planting, country park history, endangered species, hiking trails, community participation and work of the Country and Marine Parks Authority.

The last and most interesting part is a quiz on topics described in the previous segments.

The whole programme is about 40 minutes long.

Dr Yeung believed the programme would be popular among young people. Operated on a touch method, it is also suitable for young children.

He said plans were in hand to improve the system by adding more information, including facts about the Wilson Trail and advice on transport to country parks.

Efforts are also being made to turn the programme into a CD-ROM, he added.

The seven visitor centres with the new system are located in country parks in Sai Kung. Aberdeen, Shing Mun, Plover Cove, Clear Water Bay and Tai Mo Shan as well as at the Lions Nature Education Centre in Tsiu Hang. Sai Kung.

End/Sunday, June 18, 1995

Exhibition taken to NT and Kowloon

*****

A roving exhibition on Hong Kong urban planning and architecture will be staged at the Metroplaza in Kwai Fong from tomorrow (Monday) and at the Lok Fu Shopping Centre II in Central Kowloon 10 days later.

Entitled ’’Hong Kong - City of Vision", the exhibition features building models, design and photographic displays of various major present and future developments projects in the territory.

9

’’The exhibition will be held tomorrow at the Crystal Atrium of Metroplaza in Kwai Fong till June 27 and at the Atrium of the Lok Fu Shopping Centre II between June 29 and July 6,” a spokesman for the organising committee said.

It will be open to the public from 10 am to 10 pm daily. Admission is free.

The exhibition had recently been held at the Central Plaza in Wan Chai attracting more than 100,000 visitors.

"The exhibition at the Central Plaza was a great success. Visitors including professionals, office workers, students and tourists found the displays informative and educational,” the spokesman said.

"In view of its popularity, the organising committee has decided to take the exhibition to the New Territories and Central Kowloon in order to reach out to a wider community.

"In collaboration with the Education Department, a children painting competition with a similar theme will be held in October. Details of the competition will be announced in mid-Septcmber," he added.

Apart from giving an overview of the different development patterns of Hong Kong, the exhibition highlights the planning of various activities including commerce, industry, transport, housing, community, education, recreation and preservation.

Two documentary videos, entitled "Hong Kong-The New Metropolis" and "The Quest For Land The Need For Reclamation", will be shown at the venues.

The exhibition is jointly presented by the Planning Department, Architectural Services Department and Information Services Department.

End/Sunday, June 18, 1995

- 10 -

Water cuts in Sai Kung and Sha Tin ♦ * * * *

Fresh and flushing water supply to some premises in Sai Kung will be temporarily suspended from 11 pm on Wednesday (June 21) to 6 am the following day to facilitate water mains leakage detection.

The affected areas will include Hong Kin Road, Hong Fu Road, Wa Fun Road, Wa Fuk Road, Wa Yung Road, Sai Kung Tui Min Hoi Chuen, Fishermen Housing Estate and the Sewage Treatment Works.

Meanwhile, flushing water supply to some premises in the northern part of Sha Tin, Sha Tin Town Centre and Fo Tan will also be cut off from 6 pm on Wednesday to 6 pm the next day to allow for conversion of the existing supply of fresh water to salt water for flushing.

The suspension will affect Lek Yuen Estate, Lek Yuen Clinic, Wo Che Estate, Yuen Wo Road, Sha Tin Technical Institute. Ti-I College, Jubilee Garden, Hong Kong Sports Institute. Lucky Plaza. Sha Tin Centre. Sha Tin Plaza. New Town Plaza, Sha Tin Town Hall. Sha Tin Magistracy. Royal Park Hotel. Wai Wah Centre, Hilton Plaza. Sha Tin Central Park. Man Lam Road. Man Lai Road. Man Lai Court, Fo Tan KCRC Station, KCRC Workshop, Au Pui Wan Street, Wo Heung Street. Wo Shing Street, Wo Shui Street, Wo Liu Hang Road, Min Fong Street, Shek Lau Tung Street, Tsung Tau Ha Road, Kwei Tei Street, Tat Yip Lane, Fo Tan Road, Fo Tan Village, Cheung Lek Mei Street, Shan Mei Street, Ho Lek Pui Street, Sui Fung Lane, Sui Wo Road, Ngau Wu Tok Street. Wong Chuk Yeung Street, Yuen Kong Au Street, Man Hang Street. Sui Wo Court, Sha Tin 33 and Scenery Garden.

End/Sunday.June 18. 1995

- 11 - ■

Students advised to check before enrolment

* ♦ * ♦ ♦

The Education Department advised students to check whether an educational establishment in which they intend to enrol this summer is registered with the department under the Education Ordinance.

A spokesman for the Education Department said under the Education Ordinance, an institution, organisation or establishment which provided education to eight or more students at any one time or 20 or more students during any one day is required to register with the department.

"To enable students or their parents to easily verify a school's credentials, schools are required to state their registration or provisional registration number on any advertisement," the spokesman said.

Students should be particularly cautious with institutions which operate a chain of centres under the same name in various districts but with only some of the centres or courses properly registered.

"A school that operates without registration may jeopardise the studies of its students," the spokesman said, adding that there is no control as to the safety of the premises, sanitary conditions and teacher qualifications.

"Furthermore, the public are reminded that only bona fide Secondary 5 students of registered schools approved to participate in the Hong Kong Certificate of Education Examination may sit for the examination as school candidates," the spokesman pointed out.

He said schools were required to display on the notice board the registration certificate showing the name of school in English and Chinese, address and registration number and a fees certificate in respect of the class, tuition fee per instalment and number of instalments.

By looking at the registration and fees certificates, the spokesman said, students would know whether the institution or centre they intended to enrol in had complied with requirements set out in the Education Ordinance or not.

Students or parents are welcome to check with the Education Department's District Education Offices to find out if an educational establishment is registered with the department.

12

The spokesman said the department conducted 118 inspections on unregistered educational establishments between September last year and May this year to ensure that they did not contravene the provisions of the Education Ordinance.

I*

During the same period, the department had issued 19 warnings to some of these establishments, requiring them to comply with the ordinance, the spokesman added.

The department had conducted 175 inspections and issued 36 warnings to unregistered educational establishments in the 1993-94 school year.

End/Monday, June 19, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Tuesday, June 20,1995

Contents Page No,

Government pleased with voter registration figures.......................... 1

Provisional register ready for public inspection tomorrow................... 2

Latest drug statistics released............................................. 4

Governor's monthly anti-drugs visit......................................... 5

Agencies chosen to run drug treatment centres for youths.................... 6

Director of Lands leads delegation to Beijing............................... 7

9.98% to 10.14% pay adjustment for civil servants........................... 8

Measures to improve international ferries security.......................... 9

Value of manufacturers' orders-on-hand in April............................ 10

Education monitoring committee set up...................................... 12

1,400 Chinese immigrant children secured school places..................... 15

Joint operation to flush out illegal immigrants............................ 16

Overseas United Kingdom electors....................................... 18

148 VMs return home voluntarily............................................ 19

Water storage figure....................................................... 19

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results................................ 20

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations....................... 21

1

Government pleased with voter registration figures

* * ♦ * ♦

The Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Nicholas Ng, today (Tuesday) congratulated the Boundary and Election Commission (BEC) for a highly successful voter registration exercise.

He also urged all registered electors to vote in the elections on September 17, which will return Hong Kong's first fully elected Legislative Council.

Mr Ng pointed out that more people than ever now had the right to vote in the elections as the voter registration figures released by the BEC showed increases in the electorate for both the functional and the geographical constituencies.

"For the nine new functional constituencies alone, over 1.05 million people have signed up.

"This is extremely good, bearing in mind in particular that these constituencies are newly created and that we are building up the franchise from scratch. It is a big step forward in giving our working population a second vote," he said.

Mr Ng said the result was also very encouraging for the other 21 old functional constituencies.

"For the 10 functional constituencies representing the professional sectors, there are more electors in every one of them. There are now a total of some 72,000 - ' electors in these constituencies, an increase of more than 9,000 people, or 14 per cent.

"For the other 11 functional constituencies where individual electors have replaced corporate electors, the total electorate has increased from 8,325 to some 10,000. This represents a 22 per cent growth," he said.

With all the functional constituencies added together, Mr Ng said there were now more than 1.13 million electors, which represent a 15-fold increase compared with the functional constituency electorate in the 1991 Legislative Council elections.

• • FT;

The geographical constituencies also recorded a net increase in electors, from 2.45 million to some 2.56 million.

"This follows the entry of 229,000 new names on the General Electoral Roll and the deletion of about 114,000 out-dated ones," Mr Ng explained.

2

”So we now have a very broadly based geographical electorate and a much more accurate voter register.

"All round, this is a very good result," he noted.

Mr Ng commended the BEC for its hard work in the past five months.

c) • • .

"All credit goes to the Commission for a job well done," he said.

1 ■ • • • ■■ ■■ ■ '■ ■

The Secretary said with the voter registration exercise behind, the Government and the BEC would move on to finalise practical arrangements for the September Legislative Council elections.

■ ' Ue* • .. .3; r-j ; , .

"In the next three months, we will work hard to ensure that the elections will be conducted in an open and fair manner," he said.

.y(, . z- •

The Government will launch a massive publicity campaign for the elections.

"Some $21 million will be spent on the campaign to highlight the importance of the elections, to familiarise electors with the voting arrangements, and to encourage them to come out to vote," he said. . ,

Mr Ng appealed to the electors to support the September elections.

"Everyone has an important part to play between now and the polling day. I hope they all come out to vote on Sunday, September 17," he said.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

' J)

Provisional register ready for public inspection tomorrow

*****

The 1995 Provisional Register will be available for public inspection at the Registration and Electoral Office tomorrow (Wednesday).

The Chairman of the Boundary and Election Commission, Mr Justice Woo Kwok-hing, told a press conference today (Tuesday) that he was satisfied with the overall voter registration figures.

- . ' < . >» » ■

. f.-.?. a;..-

3

The total electorate of the geographical constituencies will increase from 2.45 million to 2.56 million. This follows about 229,000 new applications on the one hand, and on the other the deletion of about 114,000 out-dated and inaccurate entries.

A total of 283 electors are registered in the Election Committee constituency which is constituted by district board members.

For the nine new functional constituencies (FCs), more than 1.05 million working persons are registered to vote in the September Legislative Council elections, some 42 per cent of the potential electorate.

"Mind you, we start the registration for new FCs from scratch," Mr Justice Woo said.

For the old FCs, there are more electors in each of the 10 old FCs representing professional sectors - and the total electorate in these seats is up by about 14 per cent or 9,102 people.

There will be 22.5 per cent more electors in the 10 old FCs where individual electors have replaced corporate electors - up to 10,195 from 8,325 in 1994.

The Chairman said members of the public might lodge with the Registration Officer an objection as regards any entry or a claim in respect of the entry or any omission concerning himself in the register before July 5.

Cases of objections and claims will be referred to the Revising Officer for determination. The Revising Officer is a member of the Judiciary. His decisions will be included in the Final Register to be published on August 1.

The Provisional Register will also be available for public inspection later this week at the following offices until July 5:

1. District Offices That part of the Geographical Constituency

Register relevant to the district

2. Registration and Electoral Office, Registration Section, 10th floor, Guardian House, 32 Oi Kwan Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong.

That parts on the 9 new FCs

4

3. Central and Western District Office ) • I.

4. Yau Tsim Mong District

Office )

5. Kwun Tong District That parts on the old 20 FCs Office )

6. Sha Tin District

Office )

7. Tsuen Wan District

Office )

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Latest drug statistics released

The number of drug abusers of all ages reported to the Government’s Central Registry of Drug Abuse (CRDA) in the first quarter this year decreased by 7.1 per cent >., t from 6,956 to 6,459 as compared with the corresponding period in 1994, according to the first quarterly statistics released today (Tuesday).

Among them, 1,014 were reported to the Registry for the first time and 5,445 were previously reported, representing decreases of 21.2 per cent and 4 per cent -respectively when compared with the same quarter last year.

For drug abusers under 21, the total number of individuals reported were 1,333, representing a drop of 7.8 per cent from 1,446 in the same period last year. Within them, a decrease of 29.1 per cent was observed for newly reported persons but an increase of about 16 per cent for previously reported persons.

These statistics were discussed at the Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) meeting held this afternoon.

. ’ it . 'I' .

* — * I

Members were also informed that the first quarter of 1995 registered an increase in the number of female drug abusers of all ages from 620 (8.9 per cent) to 666 (10.3 per cent) in the same period last year. A research study to examine drug abuse among female would be undertaken in the coming months.

5

The quarterly statistical summary also compared some characteristics among reported drug abusers under 21 with the figures in the first quarter of last year.

It was noted that the number of young addicts in several districts has been increased, such as Tuen Mun (i4.8 per cent to 16.3 per cent) and Yuen Long (6.3 per . cent to 9.0 per cent), while a decrease was recorded for Wong Tai Sin, from 8.4 per cent to 3.9 per cent.

A slight decrease was observed in the mean initial age of drug abuse - from 15.7 to 15.6. The percentage of multiple drug abusers and psychotropic substance abusers has dropped from 14.9 per cent to 9.7 per cent and from 31.0 per cent to 29.4 per cent, respectively.

The percentage of drug abusers under 21 without a job has increased from 47.5 per cent to 50.9 per cent while those with previous conviction has grown from 54.6 per cent to 58.1 percent.

The quarterly statistics also highlighted that drug abusers under 21 commonly report taking drugs under peer influence (50.0 per cent), out of curiosity (44 per cent) or for relief of boredom, depression or anxiety (21.1 per cent). Some also claimed to take to avoid withdrawal symptom (20.5 per cent) or to seek euphoria or sensory satisfaction (10.4 per cent).

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Governor's monthly anti-drugs visit *****

The Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, will visit the women's treatment centre run by the Society for the Aid and Rehabilitation of Drug Abusers (SARDA) tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon to familiarise himself with services provided to women drug abusers seeking to free themselves from opiate addiction.

This is the fourth in a series of visits to agencies contributing to the reduction of drug abuse following the summit meeting chaired by the Governor in March.

The centre - the Sister Aquinas Memorial Women's Treatment Centre - was first established in Wan Chai in 1968 and moved to its present location in Sun Chui Estate. Sha Tin, in 1986.

6

In response to the growing demand for residential facilities for female drug abusers, plans are in hand to reprovision the centre to increase its capacity from 39 to 57 beds.

The Government has already allocated the ex-military quarters near Kam Tsin village, Sheung Shui to SARDA for the reprovisioning and the Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club has granted $3.78 million for construction works.

Attention News Editors:

Media representatives are invited to cover the Governor's visit to the Sister Aquinas Memorial Women's Treatment Centre in Sha Tin. Members of the press ?ire requested to assemble outside Sun Ming House, ground floor, No.7-8 Sun Chui Estate, Sha Tin, before 2.45 pm.

There will be a fixed position on the ground floor of the Centre where photographers and cameramen can cover the Governor's arrival and the briefing to be given by staff of SARDA.

Due to limited space in other parts of the Centre and the need to protect the privacy of inmates, coverage of the Governor's tour of the Centre will by GIS photographers only.

While the Governor is touring around the Centre, SARDA staff will give a briefing to the press on the Centre's rehabilitation programme for female addicts.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Agencies chosen to run drug treatment centres for youths *****

The Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) announced today (Tuesday) that it has selected two voluntary agencies to run two additional residential treatment centres and a counselling centre for drug abusers.

Caritas Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Christian Service were each chosen to set up and operate a residential treatment centre for young opiate abusers. Caritas was also successful in another bid to run a counselling centre in the New Territories for psychotropic substance abusers.

7

The new services were part of the $30 million package of measures announced by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, at the Summit Meeting in March to combat the growing problem of drug abuse by young people.

A spokesman for ACAN said the selection was in line with the Committee's adopted multi-modality approach in treatment and rehabilitation.

"It would be beneficial to have a diversification of service providers," he said.

The Committee received five detailed proposals from voluntary agencies for running the two residential treatment centres and three for running the counselling centre following an invitation to bid for providing the new services.

The spokesman said criteria against which the proposals were assessed included project cost, treatment approach, number of clients to be served each year, availability of premises, professional expertise and track record of operating agencies and support services provided.

"In the selection process for the operators of the residential treatment service, the Committee was impressed by the pragmatic approach adopted by Caritas and the Hong Kong Christian Service, which put emphasis on the particular needs and problems of young opiate abusers," he said.

The operating agencies will be asked to work out their operational plans in greater detail.

End/Tucsday. June 20, 1995

Director of Lands leads delegation to Beijing *****

The Director of Lands. Mr Robert Pope, left for Beijing today (Tuesday), leading a four-member delegation of senior officials of the department on a one-week official visit at the invitation of the Beijing Municipal Real Estate Administrative Bureau.

A spokesman for the department said the purpose of the visit was to exchange views on the procedures and possible problems of land management, acquisition, land grant and title registration in Beijing.

8

"This would enable officials to obtain a better understanding of real estate operation in the Chinese capital.

"Site visits made during the stay will enable Hong Kong officials to obtain firsthand information on the development and various land-use plans. The delegation will also study the land value assessment of the capital and draw comparisons with practises in Hong Kong.

"The visit will surely strengthen communication link between senior officers of the Hong Kong and Chinese Governments in land matters," the spokesman added.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

9.98% to 10.14% pay adjustment for civil servants

*****

As advised by the Executive Council, the Administration today (Tuesday) decided to maintain the offer of a 10.14% pay adjustment for staff of the lower and middle pay bands and 9.98% for staff of the upper pay band and the directorate.

"The Executive Council noted that the staff sides of the four central consultative councils, having considered the prevailing economic circumstances, have agreed to the pay offer. The pay increase is fair and reasonable," the Secretary for the Civil Service. Mr Michael Sze, said.

He said staff sides' responsible attitude and co-operation had facilitated the smooth conduct of this year's pay adjustment exercise.

It is estimated that $7 billion will be required for the pay adjustment for the civil service and subvented organisations in 1995-96.

Subject to the approval of funds by the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council, civil servants will receive the revised salaries at the end of July.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

9

Measures to improve international ferries security

*****

Measures to enhance Security arrangements for international ferries were discussed at a meeting between the Marine Department and the ferry operators this (Tuesday) afternoon.

Chaired by the Marine Department, the meeting reviewed current arrangements following an armed robbery and piracy against a Hong Kong-bound jetfoil last week.

All operators agreed to adopt measures to ban the shipments of valuables by passenger ferries, thus removing the incentive for possible robbery.

The meeting reviewed action stipulated in international maritime conventions against armed robbery and piracy. A set of guidelines designed for masters and crew members of these international ferries on how to handle such incidents were also discussed.

Ferry operators were told that the Government had launched a review into the security arrangements at the Macau Ferry Terminal on Hong Kong Island and the China Ferry Terminal in Tsim Sha Tusi. In addition, they were informed that based on the findings of the review, appropriate action would be taken.

Likewise the operators would also take similar course of action to ensure security on their vessels.

Furthermore, the operators were reminded of the means of communications with coastal emergency centres in case of such emergencies so that action could be taken promptly by government agencies.

End/Tucsday, June 20, 1995

10

Value of manufacturers' orders-on-hand in April

*****

The value of manufacturers' orders-on-hand for local production in April increased by 4% over a year earlier, according to the provisional results of a monthly survey released today (Tuesday) by the Census and Statistics Department.

Comparing April 1995 with April 1994, significant increase in the value of outstanding orders was recorded in the electronic products industry (+29%). Increases in the value of orders were also recorded in the electrical products industry (+15%), the printing & publishing industry (+6%) and the wearing apparel industry (+3%).

On the other hand, significant decreases in the value of orders were registered in the fabricated metal products industry (-31%) and the textiles industry(-21%). Decrease in the value of orders was also recorded in the plastic products industry (-12%).

Compared with March, and bearing in mind that this comparison may be affected by seasonal factors, the value of manufacturers' orders-on-hand in April increased by 3%.

The Monthly Survey of Orders-on-hand covers a sample of some 300 manufacturing firms engaging 50 or more workers.

Manufacturers' orders-on-hand refer to orders and parts of orders received earlier by manufacturers for local production which remain unfilled as at the end of the reference month. Orders received by traders not engaged in production are included if such orders are further placed to manufacturers for production locally. However, orders placed to manufacturing firms for production in China and other places outside Hong Kong are not included in this series of orders-on-hand statistics.

A spokesman of the department pointed out that caution should be exercised in interpreting the manufacturers' orders-on-hand figures in a single month. Instead, the trend movement of the series as displayed over a wider span of time points should be looked at.

The survey report for April 1995, at $6.0 a copy, is now on sale at the Government Publications Centre, Queensway Government Offices, Low Block, ground floor, Queensway, and at the Census and Statistics Department Publications Section. 19th Floor, Wanchai Tower. 12 Harbour Road. Wan Chai.

11

Enquiries about the survey results may be made to the Industrial Production Statistics Section of the Census and Statistics Department on 2805 6441.

The following table shows the year-on-year percentage changes in the value of orders-on-hand in different manufacturing industries.

Percentage changes in the value of orders-on-hand in

March 1995 over March 1994 (Revised) April 1995 over April 1994 (Provisional),

All industries covered in the survey +7 +4

♦ Wearing apparel +6 +3

* Textiles -20 -21

* Electronic products +33 +29

* Electrical products +7 + 15

* Fabricated metal products -24 -31

♦ Plastic products -2 - 12

* Printing and publishing # +6

# Change within +/- 0.5%

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

I I

- 12 -

Education monitoring committee set up *****

The Director of Education, Mr Lam Woon-kwong, today (Tuesday) appointed 21 academics, educators, teachers, school heads and parents to the newly established Monitoring Committee on Implementation of Target Oriented Curriculum (TOC).

The monitoring committee will hold its first meeting on July 5.

The monitoring committee will be chaired by the Principal of St Paul's Convent School, Sister Margaret Wong Kam-lin.

Sister Margaret is a notable figure in the education field. She is currently a member of the Education Commission and has been serving in various educational and public bodies.

Other members of the monitoring committee are:

Vice-chairman

Mr Kwan ting-fai

Senior Assistant Director

Education Department

Members

Dr Leung Yat-ming

Chief Executive

Curriculum Development Institute

Education Department

Mrs Wan Chan Ka-ki

Lecturer

Department of Curriculum Studies

University of Hong Kong

Dr Lam Chi-chung

Lecturer

Department of Curriculum and Instruction

The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Mrs Judy Chua Tiong Hong-sieng

Headmistress

St Stephen’s Girls’ Primary School

13

Mr Ngai Hing

Headmaster

TWGHs Wong See Sum Primary School (AM)

Ms Chong Oi-ling

Teacher

Sir Robert Black College of Education Past Students’ Association

Ho Sau Ki Primary School (AM)

Ms Mary Wong Mei-lin

Head Teacher

Good Hope School (Primary Section)

Mr Lam Heung-sing

Teacher

PLK Chong Kee Ting Primary School (PM)

Dr Pang King-chce

Deputy Director

Hong Kong Institute of Education

Mr Chan Kai-yeen

Headmaster

Bishop Walsh Primary School

Ms Fung Pik-yec

Teacher

Heep Woh Primary School (AM)

Mr Lawrence Lo Kong-kai

Assistant to Episcopal Delegate for Education

Catholic Education Office

Mr Ip Kin-yuen

Teacher

Ko Lui Secondary School

Mr Chiu Chi-shing

Senior Lecturer

Department of Educational Studies

Hong Kong Institute of Education

- 14 -

Mr Mak Kwai-po

Principal Education Secretary

Po Leung Kuk

Mr Teng Chong-tai

Principal

Lingnan Secondary School

Mr Addy Cheuk Wai-kit (parent)

Mrs Canny Lau Ng Shui-ching

Member of the Committee on Home-school Co-operation

Secretary

Ms Chan Wai-ming

Principal Inspector (TOC Development)

Curriculum Development Institute

Education Department

The Terms of Reference for the monitoring committee are:

* To monitor the progress of implementation of TOC against the schedule, including various aspects such as further development of the curriculum, provision of the teacher education programme, availability of resource support, development in assessment, and delivery of the publicity and public education programme.

To identify problems on a school, and if applicable, also on a district basis during the early stages of implementation and to suggest remedies in the light of experience gained from previous pilot exercises.

* To evaluate the progress and effectiveness of TOC in its implementation in the three subjects of Chinese, English and Mathematics in schools and to make recommendations to the Director of Education for further enhancement in its development and implementation at higher levels, for example Key Stage 2, over the next few years.

Announcing the appointments, Mr Lam described the formation of the monitoring committee as "a reassurance of the open-mindedness of the Government in the scheduled implementation of TOC”.

15

"I have full confidence that the committee, the members of which are drawn from various educational sectors, will make valuable contribution to the smooth implementation of the Target Oriented Curriculum initiative,” he said.

Mr Lam noted that TOC would initially be adopted in the three core subjects of Chinese, English and Mathematics. It will be implemented in Primary 1 classes of 76 schools this September, extending to all primary 1 classes in 1996, and will gradually be extended upwards thereafter.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

1,400 Chinese immigrant children secured school places ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Some 1,400 Chinese immigrant children who have approached the Education Department for assistance have been successfully placed in Hong Kong school system in the past six months.

Of these, 1,216, or 87 per cent, were primary students. They secured school places within weeks.

A spokesman for the Education Department described today (Tuesday) the high placement rate as the result of the co-operation and the close working relationship between district education officers and school operators.

”The department will continue to study other means to further improve the procedure of placing Chinese immigrant children in our schools," he said.

The spokesman clarified that parental choice is put in the first place in this exercise.

"A preliminary interview on the education background of the applicant will be conducted when the parents make their first visit to the District Education Offices for assistance.

"Parents will be advised to approach schools of their choice with relevant information provided by and, advice given by district education officers," he explained.

16

"Statistics revealed that with this information, most primary school place seekers successfully enrolled in the school of their choice in their first attempt and, in a short time.

"For those failing to secure a school place of their choice, district education officers will liaise with various school heads to secure school places for them as soon as possible," he continued.

The spokesman pointed out that Chinese immigrant children seeking for secondary school places may ‘require a longer time as there are generally fewer vacancies available and the school authorities will need time to consider the applicants' age, standard and education background.

The spokesman said: "the Education Department has attached importance to the education service for Chinese immigrant children. Amendment to the Codes of Aid was made in 1994 to provide the Director of Education with clear authority to direct an aided school to admit a pupil referred to the school by him.

"Besides, school circular has been issued to all school heads advising them to render every possible assistance to Chinese immigrant children who approach them for placement." .

••1

"In the case of applicants who have reached 15 years of age, information on schools and other educational facilities will be provided,” the spokesman added.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Joint operation to flush out illegal immigrants ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

A territory-wide operation against illegal immigration jointly mounted by the Police, Immigration Department and Labour Department has resulted in the arrests of 88 people.

The operation is part of the Government's continuous effort to flush out illegal immigrants.

The 73 suspected illegal immigrants arrested by the Police have been referred to the Immigration Department. Those found to be illegal immigrants will be repatriated.

17

A Government spokesman reiterated today (Tuesday) that there was no question of any amnesty for illegal immigrants.

"Our latest operation should drive home the point that there will be no change to this policy. Anyone foolish enough to believe otherwise is only cheating oneself,” he said.

The spokesman stressed that apart from continuous checks throughout the territory, there was no let-up in anti-illegal immigration efforts at the border.

”A high state of vigilance will continue to be maintained by the Police and the security forces both at the land and sea borders,” he said.

During the joint operation, which began at 5 am last Friday (June 16) and ended at 5 am the following day (June 17), the Police stepped up their identification spot checks in public places and carried out checks at suspicious locations throughout the territory.

3i- - i m .-J ...• ... • i

As a result, a total of 22,481 persons, 2,501 vehicles and 304 vessels were stopped for identification checks.

During the operation, Immigration investigators visited a total of 36 residential addresses and business establishments and arrested 15 suspected immigration offenders. Six local employers were invited to assist investigation.

Among the 15 arrestees, there were seven men and eight women. Eight of them were Two-way Permit holders, three were visitors, two were foreign domestic helpers, and the remaining two were imported workers.

All the Two-way Permit holders and imported workers were arrested at places of work. They were suspected to have taken up illegal or unapproved employment.

On the labour front, inspectors of the Labour Department visited 2,265 establishments to weed out any illegal immigrants who may be working there and to check that employers fulfil their legal obligation of keeping proper records of their employees.

A total of 5,664 employees had their proof of identity checked.

18

Twelve establishments were found not able to provide a record of employees for inspection.

The spokesman reminded employers that they could be fined up to $250,000 and jailed for up to three years if they were found to be employing illegal immigrants.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Overseas United Kingdom electors *****

Forms and explanatory leaflets for registration as an overseas elector in United Kingdom Parliamentary and European Parliamentary Elections may be obtained from the Hong Kong Immigration Department, a spokesman for the Immigration Department announced today (Tuesday).

’’British citizens living in Hong Kong may contact the Information Office of the Immigration Department at second floor, 7 Gloucester Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong by writing or in person to obtain the forms and explanatory leaflets,” he said.

Under the Representation of the People Act of 1989, the qualifying period for the right to vote for people living abroad has been extended from five to 20 years.

That means if a British citizen left the UK as long ago as October 1975, he can still vote. He is no longer required to declare an intention to return to the UK and the vote will be cast in the constituency in which he or his family were registered before leaving the UK.

People who left the UK before they were old enough to be included on the Electoral Register may register as overseas electors.

"In order to qualify, potential electors will have to fill in an application form and return it direct to their Electoral Registration Office by October 10, 1995 (September 15 if they were previously residents in Northern Ireland)," the spokesman reminded.

He also appealed to British citizens for assistance in informing anyone they know living abroad about this.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

19

148 VMs return home voluntarily

* ♦ * ♦ ♦

A group of 148 Vietnamese migrants (VMs) today (Tuesday) returned to Vietnam under the Voluntary Repatriation Programme of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Comprising 57 men, 37 women, 29 boys and 25 girls, they were the 232nd batch to go back under the programme.

The group brought to 953 the total number of VMs who had returned voluntarily this year, and to 45,147 the total number of returnees since the programme started in March 1989.

Commenting on the voluntary repatriation of the 148 VMs this morning, a government spokesman said intensive counselling by UNHCR staff had been successful in persuading these VMs to go home.

"The recent statement issued by the US Consulate confirming the US Administration's support for the Comprehensive Plan of Action was also a contributory factor," he said.

"It is disappointing that there are still about 500 VMs in the departure centres who had volunteered to return home but are now refusing to go.

"This situation is attributable to the false hopes engendered by the proposals currently under consideration in the US Congress," the spokesman added.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

Water storage figure

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

rJ-

Storage in Hong Kong’s reservoirs at 9 am today (Tuesday) stood at 67.2 per cent of capacity or 393.958 million cubic metres.

This time last year the reservoirs contained 402.249 million cubic metres of water, representing 68.6 per cent of capacity.

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

20

Hong Kong Monetary Authority tender results

*****

Tender date 20 Jun 1995 20 Jun 1995

Paper on offer EF bills EF bills -- r Ik.-

Issue number - • - .«• Q525 H567

Amount applied HK$3,810MN HK$2,830 MN

Amount allotted HK$ 1,500 MN HK$800 MN

Average yield accepted 5.49 PCT 5.55 PCT

Highest yield accepted 5.50 PCT 5.56 PCT

Pro rata ratio About 52 PCT About 1 PCT

Average tender yield 5.51 PCT 5.57 PCT

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

Tenders to be held in the week beginning 26 Jun, 1995

Tender date 27 Jun 1995

Paper on offer EF bills

Issue number Q526

Issue date 28 Jun 1995

Maturity date 27 Sept 1995

Tenor 91 Days

Amount on offer HK$ 1,500+300 MN

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

21

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

*****

S million Time (hours) Cumulative change (^million)

Opening balance in the account 1,714 0930 +788

Closing balance in the account 2,200 1000 +788

Change attributable to : +721 1100 +792

Money market activity -235 1200 +809

LAF today 1500 +809

1600 +721

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.5 ♦+0.0* 20.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority ’

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.31 2 years 2705 6.40 101.16 5.83

1 month 5.44 3 years 3804 6.90 102.27 6.11

3 months 5.49 5 years 5006 6.60 99.83 6.75

6 months 5.54 5 years M501 7.90 103.21 7.24

12 months 5.66

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $12,623 million

Closed June 20, 1995

End/Tuesday, June 20, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Wednesday, June 21,1995

Contents Page No.

Transcript of the Governor's meet-the-media session...................... 1

ExCo approves changes to schools provident fund rules.................... 6

Fees for security personnel permit and security company licence...... 8

Fees under buildings ordinance revised.................................. 10

Fees for certain maritime services to be revised........................ 10

Container throughput on the increase................................. 11

Pilot scheme on school-based drug education course................... 11

57 pollution cases in May............................................... 12

Two NT lots to let...................................................... 1^

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

15

1

Transcript of the Governor's meet-the-media session *****

The following is a transcript of the meet-the-media session by the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, after his visit to the Women Treatment Centre of SARD A today (Wednesday).

Governor: As you may know I've been making a number of visits over recent months in association with the Beat Drugs Campaign which we've been making as comprehensive and effective as possible. Yesterday, we had figures on the number of drug abusers which were moderately encouraging. They showed a fall in the number of registered drug abusers in the early part of this year. But that's no reason for us being complacent or thinking that we can relax our campaign. The figures are still disturbing and within the overall figures there are particularly worrying figures for young women because the number of women drug abusers has unfortunately risen. So I was pleased today to be able to see the SARDA Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Centre for young women here in Sha Tin.

The centre is doing an outstandingly good job and it has by international standards a very successful record in encouraging young women to abstain from drugs after they leave the centre. The problem we have at the moment is that the centre is pretty cramped and too small as some of you would have seen. So it's moving to new facilities in the North District later on this year and I hope that that will enable it to look after more young women and to achieve even more in the campaign to combat drug abuse here in Hong Kong.

The centre has been in this estate since 1988. It's, I think, played a useful role with community service that it's been carrying out in this estate. And I think you would have seen from the reactions of neighbours today that they've been very relaxed about having this centre here and know that when we have centres we can deal with the drug problem, when we don't have centres we can't deal with it. So I hope that residents in the North District will recognise that the centre is an addition to community services and will come and see what's happened here in Sha Tin if they want any reassurance about the establishment of the centre.

Question: Governor, there have been complaints that there are insufficient staff, social workers in the drug treatment centre, especially when they move to the new centre, that will increase to 50 ... They are very worrying about the number of staff. Do you think it's very necessary to increase the number of staff?

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Governor: I think that the number of social workers working in all our centres and the duration of their employment are both issues that we need to look at. It isn't just a question of sometimes a shortage of social workers. I think there are four full-time social workers in this centre. It is also a question of the stress which some social workers find themselves under when they are dealing with very difficult cases and that has occasionally meant that there has been a more rapid turnover in staff than any of us would like to see. So I think those are both problems that we have to address as we carry this campaign against drugs forward.

Question: What can the government do to persuade the villagers in the North District that this centre is needed because they are voicing strong opposition to it?

Governor: There have been a lot of consultations done by the District Office and by others and of course it was discussed last year by the District Board who accepted the proposal. But the best thing those who are objecting could do is to come and look at how this centre works and what success it has achieved without any of the disruption to the neighbourhood which they are arguing about. I think I am right in saying that the centre in the North District is about 10 minutes from the village. This centre is right in the middle of a housing estate and the people in the housing estate aren't complaining about the service which the centre has provided, far from it. We've had, in relation to a number of our community programmes, difficulties in explaining to residents why it's important to have a centre in their neighbourhood. Sometimes we had that difficulties with services for the physically handicapped; sometimes we've had it with services for the mentally handicapped or mentally ill. I saw it recently with services for Down Syndrome children and we've seen it of course in relation to facilities for those who have been abusing drugs. In all those cases, we have to explain to neighbourhoods, and explain patiently to the community that if we want the services which a civilised community needs and deserves and asks for then those services has got to go somewhere.

Question: Aside from opening up more centres and employ more staff, do you have any plans to stop drug abuse at the source and perhaps educating them, preventing them even get into it in the first place?

Governor: As I think you probably know we announced a few months ago, over three months ago, a large, comprehensive action plan for dealing with drug abuse. It involved a number of things. It involved more preventive education starting at the school level but elsewhere too; it involved more treatment and rehabilitation; it involved more research and it involved tougher measures to crack down on those who trade in this disgusting drugs. So we've got a comprehensive programme. We then at the Summit that I held on this had a number of sensible ideas that we would put forward and ACAN reacted to those only a few weeks ago. So we are trying to carry things forward on every front, including, you're quite right, including the educational front.

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Question: .... will an agreement be signed on the Financial Support Agreements on the airport and on the railway?

Governor: I wish that an agreement on the FSAs had been at the same time as we agreed the funding for the airport overall last autumn or at least I wished that we could have signed such an agreement very shortly afterwards. Director Lu, when he was in America a few months ago, had said that there would be an agreement within days. Alas that didn’t happen. I don't think, to be frank, that anybody should lay the reasons for that at the door of the Hong Kong Government. We've been getting on with the job of completing what is the largest civil engineering project in the world as rapidly as we can. I very much hope we'll get an agreement on the FSAs soon because frankly it's a distraction to have this hanging over us when we are trying to deal with the project as rapidly as we can. And if we can't do that who suffers? Hong Kong and Southern China.

Question: It doesn't sound very optimistic then ?

Governor: I know having spent three years almost as Governor of Hong Kong that it's unwise to sound too optimistic about things which should be very straight forward as one might send the wrong signals to the community. I hope that we will soon be able to reach an agreement. I don't know, to be candid, why we haven't managed to reach an agreement already. But I hope that we will soon reach an agreement which will be in the interests of the people of Hong Kong, both in providing them with the new airport that we need, ask the residents of Kowloon, as rapidly as possible and a new airport at a reasonable cost as well.

Question: What's your basic message to the people of Hong Kong two years before the magical year?

Governor: My message to the people of Hong Kong is a very simple one. Hong Kong is one of the outstanding success stories of the last 50 years. A largely refugee community, which has without any natural resources to speak of, created an economic miracle in an open, free, plural society governed by the rule of law. I think that if people want as much as I believe they do that to continue, it will. We've had an agreement with China which underpins the transfer of sovereignty in 1997 and which guarantees Hong Kong's way of life for 50 years after 1997. It's clearly overwhelmingly in China's interest that that should be the case because Hong Kong is so superbly successful, representing now about 26 per cent of China's GDP. But not only is it in China's interest, it's in the region's interest, in the world's interest that that should continue. I believe that the international community will be watching what happens here very closely. And I think they will see the people of Hong Kong who have taken so much turbulence in the past in their stride managing the transfer in 1997, thanks in large measure, to their determination and their commitment to the values of a free society.

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Question: But your point that you doesn’t seem to be very popular within Chinese leadership though.

Governor: I very much hope that between now and 1997 the Chinese leadership will understand the importance of trusting the people of Hong Kong. When 1997 comes, its not just a question of the sovereignty over a piece of real estate. I hope Chinese leaders will understand as well that its a matter of hearts and minds and the best way of winning the hearts and minds of the people of Hong Kong is by showing that you trust them not least that you the judgements they make in free and fair elections.

Question: Do you have any comments to make on the employment situation in the light of the San Miguel redundancies?

Governor: I don't think that one commercial decision should distract us from what we are attempting to do on unemployment. Unemployment now stands at about 2.9 per cent as you know. By standards outside Hong Kong, that would be regarded as pretty low. But in Hong Kong, its a problem because we are used to so much lower unemployment figures. What we have to do in Hong Kong is first of all to develop our training and retraining, to develop our job placement programme which I was seeing some examples of the other day during one of my visits. And, as you know we are reviewing the Labour Importation Scheme. We'll, I hope be in a position to make announcements about that in the early autumn. But I don't think one commercial decision changes any of those fundamentals. The most important fundamental as far as Hong Kong is concerned is that we have an underlying strong economy and that's going to continue.

Question: Mr Patten, when do you expect to see the signing of an agreement with Vietnam, we have a concerned group warning of a possible, of another exodus if there is a delay in signing of such an agreement?

Governor: Well, there is an agreement which was made recently at Geneva. And under that agreement, it should be possible for us to continue I hope at a more rapid rate, the mandatory repatriation scheme, the orderly repatriation scheme alongside the voluntary repatriation scheme. I think people recognise that to some extent the orderly repatriation scheme is necessary in order to speed up voluntary repatriation. In accomplishing that objective, we've had some difficulties recently not least because of the unfortunate and misleading messages which have been sent to some Vietnamese migrants in the camps by speeches and decisions made in the US Congress. I recognise the US administration has been keen to put the position straight. I very much hope that we can, despite the recent problems, speed up the repatriation programme as soon as possible and I hope that Vietnamese migrants in the camps will recognise that their future lies in Vietnam where the economy is increasingly successful rather than in institution life in the camps.

5

Question: Governor, do you have any comment on the JLG meeting which is coming up...

Governor: I always hope for improved progress in JLG meetings. We've made reasonable progress in some areas like the transfer of defence lands, like the localisation of laws. But there is still a lot more to do in other areas, for example, the adaptation of laws and issues like rights of abode and so on. So I hope that the July meeting of the JLG will see more progress than the last couple of meetings .

Question: Do you think there is anything wrong with the housing policy for the elderly in view of the homicide case yesterday?

Question: Do you think the recent policy has to be reviewed?

Governor: No, I don't think that there is anything wrong with the policy. Ever since we reviewed policy for housing for the elderly in 1987, we've been trying to develop our sheltered housing here in Hong Kong, and if anything, if you compare the situation here with the situation in similar communities, we don't have enough sheltered housing and I am keen to see us provide more. But since 1987, we've provided I think about 2,400 units of sheltered accommodation similar to the one where the tragedy occurred yesterday and there haven't been any difficulties. The Housing Authority does try in all its sheltered accommodation to provide a warden service for 24 hours a day and to provide an emergency alarm system. So it recognises the potential for problems. But I think we shouldn't allow ourselves to be deflected by one tragedy from continuing with a sensible policy of accommodating those elderly people who are able to go on living a more or less independent life. Obviously, my condolences go out to the friends and relatives of those who died in yesterday's tragedy.

Question: So much have been done, but why do you think still tragedy happens?

Governor: I don't know. 1 don't know the details of that case.

Question: As where estates have that warden and emergency service. So do you think the Government need to speed up the policy, speed up the programme?

Governor: We need more sheltered housing in Hong Kong. I've got no doubt about that at all. Obviously if there are lessons to be learnt from the tragedy that took place yesterday, we will be keen to learn them.

Question: Why is the Government not been able to repatriate 1.800 boat people as in the agreement in Geneva. Why is the Government not possible to do that?

6

Governor: We've been trying to make efforts to implement the agreement and we will do so as rapidly as possible. We've recently had problems which you will know because of the message which has been sent I think to people in the camps from speeches and decisions made in the US Congress, the point that I made very much earlier. But it remains our urgent objective to be able to achieve the figure for repatriation which was agreed in Geneva. That agreement was a very important one for Hong Kong. It was the result I think of a very successful meeting and we want to get to that sort of figure as soon as we can. It has to be said that there have been times in the past when we've managing that sort of figure and reducing substantially the number in the camps. The number in the camps, the number returned to Vietnam went down by about 44,000, 45,000 over a five-year period. We've got to get back to that sort of rate of moving people.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

ExCo approves changes to schools provident fund rules

*****

The Governor-in-Council has approved the amendments to the rules governing the operation of the Grant Schools Provident Fund and the Subsidised Schools Provident Fund.

The two Funds are statutory provident fund schemes open to serving grant school and subsidised school teachers. Each fund is administered by its own Board of Control.

A Government spokesman said today (Wednesday) it was necessary to update and to make changes to these rules to take account of developments that had taken place since they were last amended in 1990.

The approved amendments to the Provident Fund Rules:

a. include the method of setting off provident fund payment against severance or long service payment;

b. allow deceased contributors' accounts to be kept open for annual dividend purposes before payment to their personal representatives;

c. include the definitions of the Hong Kong Special Schools Council and new types of schools; and

7

d. amend the composition of the Board of Control of the Subsidised Schools Provident Fund.

"The rules are amended to provide the method of setting off provident fund payment against severance or long service payment to bring them in line with the Employment Ordinance," the spokesman said.

The rules are also amended to keep open a deceased contributor's account automatically for a period up to the third anniversary of the death of the contributor or to the date of the grant of Probate or Letters of Administration, whichever is the earlier.

"Within this period, the annual guaranteed and supplementary dividends will continue to be credited to the deceased contributor's account," the spokesman explained.

At present, the Subsidised Schools Provident Fund Rules do not contain definitions of a special school, code of aid for special schools and the Hong Kong Special Schools Council. Neither are the definitions of the new types of aided schools such as Practical Schools and Skills Opportunity Schools contained in the Rules.

"We take the opportunity to update the rules by including these definitions and a revised definition of the Subsidised Primary Schools Council," the spokesman said.

On the amendment concerning the composition of the Board of Control of the Subsidised Schools Provident Fund, the spokesman pointed out that the amended composition brought in equal number of elected and appointed members, thereby broadening the representation of teachers of primary and secondary schools on the Board.

"The new composition is supported by the present Board of Control, the schools councils and major teacher unions, and will take effect in the next accounting year starting on September 1, 1995," the spokesman said.

End/Wednesday, June 21,1995

8

Fees for security personnel permit and security company licence

* ♦ ♦ * *

The Govemor-in-Council has endorsed the regulation to prescribe the fees for security personnel permits and security company licences issued under the Security and Guarding Services Ordinance, the Government announced today (Wednesday).

The Security and Guarding Services (Fees) Regulation will be gazetted on Friday (June 23).

Principal Assistant Secretary for Security Mr Jack Chan said the Security and Guarding Services Ordinance, enacted last December, provided for a licensing sdheme under which security personnel and security companies must hold valid permits and licences respectively, in order to perform security work for reward.

"The Ordinance also provides for the charging of fees for the application and issue of the permits and licences," he said.

"The aim of the licensing scheme is to regulate the security and guarding services industry with a view to upgrading its standard of service."

Mr Chan explained that it was Government policy that fees should generally be set at levels sufficient to recover the full costs of providing the services, and that the proposed fees for the security personnel permits and security company licences were charged according to this principle.

Under the Ordinance, a permit or a licence will normally be valid for five years. The fee for the application of a permit is $50, and for its issue is $120 for five years, or for the validity period of the permit if it is less than five years.

The fee for the application of a licence is $3,500, and for its issue ranges from $78,050 to $235,400 for five years, depending on the nature and number of types of security work involved.

The licence fee may be paid by equal annual instalments. In effect, it ranges from $ 15,610 to $47,080 per annum.

The following table sets out the proposed licence fees for companies engaging in different types of security work:

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(a) Provision of guarding services

(b) Handling of security devices

(c) Provision of armoured transportation

(d) Provision of guarding services and handling of security devices

(e) Provision of guarding services and armoured transportation

(f) Handling of security devices and provision of armoured transportation

(g) Provision of guarding services and armoured transportation, and handling of security devices

: $78,050 (for five years) (or $15,610 per annum)

: $79,050 (for five years) (or $ 15,810 per annum)

: $180,500 (for five years) (or $36,100 per annum)

: $106,000 (for five years) (or $21,200 per annum)

: $207,450 (for five years) (or $41,490 per annum)

: $208,450 (for five years) (or $41,690 per annum)

: $235,400 (for five years) (or $47,080 per annum)

Mr Chan said the Fees Regulation would take effect on a day to be appointed by the Secretary for Security.

"We will launch a comprehensive publicity programme to coincide with the invitation for applications for permits and licences in a few months' time.

"Details of the licensing scheme will be announced at the same time,” he added.

End/Wednesday. June 21, 1995

10

Fees under buildings ordinance revised * * * * ♦

The Government is to increase a number of the fees chargeable under the Buildings Ordinance for processing and approving of building plans to offset higher operational costs.

A Government spokesman said the proposed increases of about 9 per cent would bring the fees, which were last revised in September last year, up to the cunent price levels.

The new fees, to be published under the Building (Administration) Regulations in the gazette on Friday (June 23), will come into effect on September 1.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Fees for certain maritime services to be revised

*****

The Government will revise in August this year the fees charged for a number of maritime services, a Government spokesman said today (Wednesday).

These fees, collected by the Marine Department, include port dues and fees; licence and related fees for local craft and river trade vessels; survey fees for convention ships and local craft; fees for the services provided by Seamen's Recruiting Offices; and fees for examination and licensing of pilots.

"They will be increased by 10 per cent from August 23 in line with cost escalation due to inflation," the spokesman said.

These fees are charged under the Merchant Shipping (Fees) Regulation; Merchant Shipping (Engine Room Watch Ratings) Regulations; Merchant Shipping (Navigational Watch Ratings) Regulations; Shipping and Port Control Regulations; Merchant Shipping (Liability and Compensation for Oil Pollution) Compulsory Insurance) Regulations; Merchant Shipping (Registration)(Fees and Charges) Regulations; and Politage Regulations.

Amendments to these regulations to give effect to the increases will be published in the Gazette on Friday (June 23).

End/Wednesday. June 21, 1995

11

Container throughput on the increase ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

In the first two months of this year, the container terminal operators together with their counterparts in the mid-stream and river trade sectors handled more than 1.6 million TEUs (twenty foot equivalent units), 13.3 per cent more than the same period last year, the acting Director of Marine, Mr S Y Tsui, said today (Wednesday).

Speaking at a ceremony to welcome the arrival of a container vessel, the M V Neptune Sardonyx, on her maiden voyage to Hong Kong, Mr Tsui said' the increases reflected the port’s efficiency and underlined its hub port status.

Capable of carrying 4,400 TEUs, the Neptune Sardonyx, berthed at the Hongkong International Terminals in Kwai Chung about 11 pm yesterday. She completed her cargo work and set sail for Singapore about 2 pm today.

Mr Tsui noted that the container terminal operators at Kwai Chung and on Stonecutters Island handled 1.14 million TEUs in the first two months of this year, representing an increase of 18.8 per cent over the same period last year.

’’While the handling capacity by the mid-stream operators during the first two months of this year maintained at the same level as the corresponding period last year, the river trade operators handled 135,000 TEUs in January and February this year, about 10 per cent more than their records for the same period last year,” Mr Tsui said.

The 53,519 gross registered ton Neptune Sardonyx commenced her services on June 13 and arrived from Kaoshiung last night.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Pilot scheme on school-based drug education course ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Twenty secondary schools will participate in a pilot scheme on school-based drug education course in the first half of the 1995-96 school year.

A spokesman for the Education Department said: "This pilot scheme is one of the initiatives taken by the department to promote anti-drug preventive education in support of the pledge made by the Governor in the summit meeting in March."

12

The pilot scheme is aimed at encouraging schools to implement their own antidrug education programmes.

Schools can adapt the Drug Education Teaching Kit produced by the Hong Kong Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) to develop a school-based drug education programme for students at junior secondary level.

The spokesman assured that pilot schools would be provided with support and advice from health education inspectors at the Advisory Inspectorate in developing and implementing their drug education programmes.

The department will also organise sessions for teachers in charge of drug education at the pilot schools to familiarise them with the Drug Education Teaching Kit.

Pilot school teachers will be given priority to participate in the Course on Drug Education for Secondary School Teachers jointly organised by the Education Department and the Narcotics Division in August this year.

The spokesman said all secondary schools are encouraged to participate in the scheme in the 1996-97 school year.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

57 pollution cases in May *****

A total of 57 convictions were recorded in the courts last month for breaching antipollution legislation enforced by the Environmental Protection Department.

Among them, 25 were made under the Water Pollution Control- Ordinance (WPCO), 13 under the Noise Control Ordinance (NCO), 13 under the Air Pollution Control Ordinance (APCO), one under the Dumping At Sea Act 1974 (Overseas Territories) Order 1975 (DASO), and five under the Waste Disposal Ordinance (WDO).

The fines ranged from $2,000 to $175,000. Topwide Engineering Ltd was fined $ 175,000 for allowing the use of powered mechanical equipment for construction work without a permit. This is the highest fine imposed since the NCO comes into force in 1989.

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Attention News Editors:

The list of the convictions and the associated fines imposed by the courts in May will be faxed and enquiries on specific cases can be directed to the following officers:

Case Officer ••• ' • Tel

Cases 1,2,26,39,40,52,53 Mr Dick Rootham 2707 7501

; j iH. ■ i - >•

Cases 3,4,27-31,41 Ms Mabel Mak 2516 1800

Cases 5-11,32,33,42 Mr Murray Luo 2411 9601

? • i << . . ' . ' 'JI'. *.•_ t

Cases 12-20,34-36,43-47,54-56 Mr Wong Ho-yan 2685 1133

Cases 21-25,48 Mr Franklin Chung 2417 6074

Cases 37-38,49-51 Mr Joe Kwan 2402 5201

Case 57 Dr Ellen Chan 2755 3553

However, enquiries on general issues should be directed to the department’s Media Relations Unit.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

14

Two NT lots to let *****

The Lands Department is inviting tenders for the short- term tenancy of two pieces of government land in the New Territories.

Covering an area of 6,150 square metres, the first lot is located in Area 20, Luen Wo Hui, Fanling, for use as a fee-paying public car park.

The tenancy is for one year, renewable quarterly.

The second lot is located in Kin Tak Street, Yuen Long, having an area of 2,141 square metres also for use as a fee-paying public car park.

The tenancy is for two years, renewable quarterly.

Closing date for submission of tenders for the two lots are at noon on July 7.

Tender forms, tender notice and conditions may be obtained from the District Lands Office, North, District Lands Office, Yuen Long, the District Lands Offices, Kowloon, 10th floor, Yau Ma Tei Car Park Building, 250 Shanghai Street, Kowloon and the Lands Department, 14th floor, Murray Building, Garden Road.

Tender plans can also be inspected at these offices.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995.

15

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

*****

• $ million Time (hours) Cumulative change (Smillion)

Opening balance in the account 2,200 0930 +327

Closing balance in the account 2,305 1000 +327

Change attributable to : 1100 +311

Money market activity +310 1200 +314

LAF today -205 1500 +314

1600 +310

LAF rate 4.25% bid/6.25% offer TWI 118.4 *-0.1* 21.6.95

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.35 2 years 2705 6.40 101.18 5.81

1 month 5.44 3 years 3804 6.90 102.29 6.10

3 months 5.49 5 years 5006 6.60 99.83 6.75

6 months 5.53 5 years M501 7.90 103.15 7.25

12 months 5.61

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $13,988 million

Closed June 21, 1995

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL.: 2842 8777

SUPPLEMENT

Wednesday, June 21,1995

Contents P-age No.

Legislative Council meeting: Monitoring of Hong Kong Housing Society............................. 1

Soft drugs.................................................... 5

Waste Disposal (Charges for Disposal of Waste) Regulation........ 10

Employment Ordinance............................................. 12

Employees' Compensation (A) Bill: Committee Stage................ 13

Securities (Amendment) Bill 1995 ................................ 16

Securities (Clearing Houses) (Amendment) Bill 1995 .............. 18

Motor vehicles insurance and employees compensation bills........ 19

Pharmacy and poisons ordinance and regulations................... 21

Provision of park-and-ride facilities being examined............. 22

/City Hall...

Contents Page No,

City Hall car park..................................................... 24

Comprehensive Social Security Assistance............................... 25

Vacant positions in retail industry.................................... 27

Criminal records of listed company directors........................... 29

Catering industry not exempted from Trade Effluent Surcharge....... 30

Convention on civil aspects of child abduction......................... 33

Rental income loss incurred by vacant public housing flats............. 34

Hospice care to AIDS patients.......................................... 35

Assignment of legal aid cases to a barrister........................... 36

Overseas duty visits of department heads............................... 38

Number of beggers in busy streets increased............................ 39

Issue of fixed penalty tickets......................................... 41

Govt passage tax at Cross Harbour Tunnel............................... 44

Compassionate rehousing................................................ 45

Employees' Re-Training Scheme.......................................... 47

Unemployed receiving welfare payments.................................. 49

Power of the Securities and Futures Commission......................... 50

Activities of religious groups in HK............................... 51

1

Monitoring of Hong Kong Housing Society

*****

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Housing, Mr Dominic Wong, in the motion debate on monitoring the Hong Kong Housing Society in the legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I have listened with great interest to comments made by Honourable Members on the role, policies and operations of the Housing Society, and am grateful for their views and suggestions. I shall respond to the main points raised.

Housing Society's role and objectives

First, let me clarify that the Housing Society is an independent, non-profit-making organisation set up in 1948 and incorporated by ordinance in 1951. Although it has a close working relationship with the Government, it is not a quasi-govemment body or an executive arm of the Government. The Housing Society is composed of a group of dedicated volunteers who have devoted much of their time and energy freely to serve the community.

The prime objective of the Housing Society is to provide housing for specific low-income groups in Hong Kong. It was the pioneer in this field, in parallel with the Hong Kong Housing Authority which was established by the Government 25 years later. The Government does not directly subsidised the Housing Society but rather grants land at concessionary premia and low interest loans to the Housing Society to help it meet specific housing objectives. Conditions are imposed on the use of land. Despite such assistance, the Housing Society deploys much of its own reserves and, if necessary, raises finance from the market as working capital in order to complete the various projects.

Housing production

In relation to its public housing role, the Society has produced about 32,000 rental flats for low-income households (for which, on average, 40% of market rent is charged), 3,600 flats for sale (which are similar to the Housing Authority's Home Ownership Scheme and the Private Sector Participation Scheme), and 3,200 flats under the Urban Improvement Scheme. Another 8,500 units are under construction. The total cost of producing all these housing units amounts to around $15 billion. To put matters in perspective, only 3.6% (or $537 million) of this cost is assisted by government loans. Up to 31 March 1995, nearly 40% of these loans have already been repaid.

2

Rents and prices

At present, most of the rent collected from the Housing Society's stock of rental units goes towards the payment of rates, management cost, maintenance and repair, and cross-subsidisation of flats for elderly persons and in rural areas. In most estates, the Housing Society also provides space for voluntary agencies at concessionary rents.

As regards flats for sale, I must point out that prices have regard to the “ affordability of eligible households and are subject to the approval of the Housing Branch. Normally they are fixed at about 60% of market price.

The Administration is of the opinion that the Housing Society's rental units and flats for sale are generally satisfactory in terms of rent, price and quality.

Regarding the soiled pipe problem of Kwun Tong Garden, mentioned by the Hon Szeto Wah, I understand that the Housing Society is putting out tender to replace all the soiled pipes concerned. Like every organisation there must be individual cases which take time to resolve and we should not nail an organisation on this basis.

Redevelopment

• .11 t

Contrary to some misconceptions, the Housing Society has also made a substantial contribution towards urban renewal. Here, I thank the Honourable Edward Ho and Mr James To, for reaffirming this point. The Housing Society initiated the Urban Improvement Scheme as early as 1974 in order to speed up the redevelopment of urban slums. This is a mammoth task. Not only has the Housing Society to pay full market premium on land to the Government, but it also has to rehouse and compensate affected clearees. In certain cases, it is required to provide open space and community facilities. I am glad to report, so far, it has successfully completed 26 urban improvement projects. This is a very good record, Mr President, despite the obstacles faced. The Housing Society is now proceeding with the Ma Tau Kok Comprehensive Development Area project, on which it expects to spend $3.2 billion of its own funds to produce 890 residential units for sale and other commercial premises. -

We must not forget that as a result of substantial changes in both the social and economic environment of Hong Kong in recent years, such as higher land costs, lower development density, and the demand for better rehousing and higher compensation by clearees, the task of urban renewal is becoming increasingly difficult. The Housing Society is now reviewing the situation with the Government so as to determine how the two Comprehensive Development Areas in Tsuen Wan and Kennedy Town can best be taken forward. My colleague, the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, is now working out the overall strategies to facilitate and expedite urban renewal, taking into account all the problems associated with it before proceeding with public consultation in the near future on the way ahead. Meanwhile, I would stress that » the Housing Society will carry on its urban improvement activities.

3

Sandwich ClassJ lousing

As Members well remember, in mid-1993, the Government decided to provide housing at reasonable prices for the sandwich class, and asked the Housing Society to take on this new role, which; it readily accepted. It has indeed undertaken the Sandwich Class Housing Loan Scheme with $2 billion loan capital from the Government and also as the implementation agent of the main scheme, it is starting to build various flats for the sandwich class. In doing all these, again the Housing Society has to dip into its own reserves and even borrow from banks and financial institutions in order to finance the construction of all these flats in order to fulfil, what I would call, a public duty.

Sale prices of Sandwich class housing flats are of course subject to the approval of the Housing Branch. And given the fluctuation in property prices, it is difficult, at this juncture to forecast the type of surplus which the Housing Society may make after completing and selling all the 20,000 units over the next few years. However, as it is a non-profit-making organisation, the Housing Society will be closely monitored by the Housing Branch and we will certainly decide how it may utilised that surplus on housing development for the benefit of the community in future.

Executive Committee

Mr President, I have spoken at some length to outline the very positive growth and substantial contributions of the Housing Society. Let me now turn to the subject of the Executive Committee mentioned by some Honourable Members. Ever since the Housing Society's establishment in 1948, members of the Executive Committee comprise people with various types of expertise, including a few serving or retired civil servants in their personal capacity. They all serve on a voluntary basis, making useful contribution to housing development for the community. Lat month, the Housing Society, out of its own accord and having consulted the Administration, has taken the positive step of formally appointing four senior government officials, namely, myself, the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, the Director of Lands and the Director of Planning, as ex-officio members of its Executive Committee. I am sure that this recent initiative to enlarge the Executive Committee demonstrates the openness with which the Housing Society has decided to handle its affairs, and underlines its recognition of the public interest. I would add also that this gives the Government a greater opportunity to monitor the activities of the Housing Society. I understand also that the Housing Society is currently studying how the general membership base of the society can be further enlarged. Again this initiative ties in well with the Honourable Fung Kin-kee’s suggestion. I am sure the Housing Society will take this thought very seriously.

4

Management and transparency

As regards management of housing estates, the Housing Society operates with a high degree of transparency. To support this view, Honourable Members may wish to note that a Tenants Newsletter is issued on a quarterly basis, giving a summary of policies, decisions and housing arrangements. Staff also meet regularly with 100 mutual aid committees and owners' incorporations : for example, in the past 12 months, over 250 such meetings have been held. Any major issue which cannot be resolved at the estate level will be brought to the attention of the senior management, the Estate Management Sub-Committee or even the Executive Committee of the Housing Society, as necessary. It is also the Housing Society's practice that, before formulating new policies or changing existing policies affecting tenants or owners, residents are consulted through normal contacts or surveys, and their opinions are taken into consideration. Contrary to what some Honourable Members experience in isolated cases, the general feedback is that communication between residents and the Housing Society has been good and effective.

Nevertheless, the Housing Society will not be complacent and I will make sure that they will continue to make improvement in this regard.

At a more general level, senior staff of the Housing Society meet concern groups, District Board members and Legislative Councillors to explain and discuss the work of the Society. Staff attend meetings of District Boards and the Legislative Council Panel on Housing on matters concerning the Housing Society.

Recognising its large budget, wide range of activities and growing commitments, the Housing Society has invited the Corruption Prevention Department of the IC AC to conduct reviews of its operational systems in the past few years. Many recommendations for improvement have already been implemented, and others are being considered.

More recently, the Housing Society has commissioned a consultancy to review its governance structure and decision-making processes. This is yet another demonstration of its positive attitude towards improvement. Recommendations aimed to enhance the accountability and management of the Housing Society have been received and are being seriously considered by its Executive Committee.

Response to needs of the community

Turning to the needs of our community, I must say that the Housing Society responds by participating in the various types of housing projects I have described earlier on, namely, rental housing, elderly person units with warden service, flats for sale, Sandwich Class housing and urban renewal, and by providing good quality flats at reasonable rents or prices. It also provides space for voluntary agencies at concessionary rents. Overall, what it has been doing is very much in the public interest, particular the flats for sales scheme which contributes to the long term housing strategy of the Government.

5

Conclusion

In conclusion, Mr President, the Administration feels that the Housing Society has been acting responsibly in the field of housing development, and indeed has been successful in meeting the housing needs of specific groups in our community. The Executive Committee and staff of the Housing Society deserve to be congratulated on their achievements. With the presence now of Government officials on its Executive Committee and the Housing Society's positive attitude in further improving its management structure, systems and procedures, it is clear that the Housing Society wishes to continue to be responsive to enquiries and constructive suggestions, and to perform well for the benefit of the people of Hong Kong. The Administration will pass on Honourable Members' views and suggestions made this afternoon to the Housing Society for reference and action. With these remarks, Mr President, we support the spirit of the motion.

Thank you.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Soft drugs * ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Security, Mr Peter Lai, in the motion debate on soft drugs in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

Drug abuse is a long standing problem in Hong Kong. In recent years, Hong Kong has seen a persistent and worrying increase in the number of drug abusers newly reported to the Central Registry of Drug Abuse. In 1994, there was an increase of 13.5 per cent in the number of newly reported persons compared with 1993. For those newly reported young persons under 21 years of age, an increase of 22 per cent was recorded, from 2,253 in 1993 to 2,748 in 1994.

The worsening drug problem makes it clear that we need to provide an effective response and give more impetus to the current programme. It was with this objective in mind that the Governor convened the summit meeting on drugs on 6 March this year, to bring together representatives from a wide sector of the community, to plan a community-wide education and support effort to try to halt the growing trend in drug abuse by young people. At the end of the summit, the Governor announced a 26-point Forward Action Plan of concrete actions the Government will be taking in the coming months. The Action Committee Against Narcotics has also studied the 92 proposals put forward by summit participants and submitted a report with recommendations to the Governor early this month. We now have an enormous programme of work before us, and we will pursue it vigorously.

6

Legislative control

The supply of drugs is stringently controlled in Hong Kong. The illegal supply of dangerous drugs is subject to heavy penalties. Under the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, medical practitioners, pharmaceutical wholesalers and retailers and pharmacies have to comply with strict requirements governing the procurement and supply of dangerous drugs. Medical practitioners may supply a dangerous drug in bona fide consultations, and are required by law to maintain complete records of purchase and supply. The unlawful supply of a dangerous drug is an offence with a maximum penalty on conviction on indictment of a fine of $100,000 and imprisonment for 15 years.

Other natural and synthetic psychoactive substances are also strictly controlled. The Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance provides for the registration and licensing of manufacturers, in retailers and the registration of pharmaceutical products. It also lists those substances which may be obtained only when prescribed by a doctor.

Few jurisdictions impose as stringent a control on the supply of psychotropic substances as does Hong Kong. Psychotropic substances of the benzodiazepine group, which include tranquillisers, were scheduled as dangerous drugs in 1992 in order to achieve the strictest form of control over them. In the United Kingdom, for example, there is no specific requirement for record-keeping or storage in relation to psychotropic substances.

In general, therefore, our legislation provides stringent control over drugs. We keep it under review to ensure it is up-to-date and effective. Where loopholes are identified, we take action to close them. Where the legislation needs to be strengthened, we spare no effort to do so.

Enforcement

Let me say that the battle against illicit drug traffickers and peddlers is an unending one but we will continue to do out best.

Vigorous law enforcement action against drugs is under taken by the Royal Hong Kong Police Force, the Customs and Excise Department, and the Department of Health. The first two agencies are primarily concerned with combating the manufacture, trafficking, and non-medical use of dangerous drugs.

In 1994, we have seen substantial increase in drug seized. For example, 446 kilograms of heroin was seized in 1994 as compare to 270 kilograms in 1993. 3,248 kilograms of herbal cannabis were seized in 1994 as compare to 547 kilograms in 1993. We have also seen an increase in arrests for drug related offences. 15,601 arrests were made in 1994 as compare to 12,794 in 1993. Arrests for major drugs offences, for example drug trafficking, manufacturing and peddling increased by 25 per cent in 1994.

7

The Department of Health is responsible for licensing the manufacture, sale and supply of drugs for medical purposes.

It provides executive support to the Pharmacy and Poisons Board for the enforcement of legislation on pharmaceutical products. Pharmacist inspectors are empowered to inspect licensed drug premises, check records, and conduct test purchases at retail outlets to ensure the laws are complied with. Offenders are prosecuted and may be subject to disciplinary action by their professional bodies. Under the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, the Director of Health may, in the public interest, withdraw the power of medical practitioners to manufacture, possess, supply and prescribe dangerous drugs. This power was exercised in two recent cases.

The Department of Health has a well-established mechanism for monitoring the supply of drugs to registered medical practitioners and dispensaries.

Under the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, pharmacist inspectors are authorised to conduct inspections at the premises of pharmaceutical wholesalers, manufacturers’ retailers and the clinics of medical practitioners to ensure that the laws regulating the sale, storage and record-keeping of dangerous drugs are complied with.

Dangerous drugs can only be supplied by a doctor or sold to the public on prescription of a doctor at pharmacies which are authorised sellers of poisons. They must be kept in a locked receptacle and detailed records must be kept. During inspections, the physical stock of the drugs is matched with the records to detect irregularities. Prosecution action is initiated where there is sufficient evidence to indicate breaches of the law.

As regard medical practitioners, the Department of Health monitors their purchase of dangerous drugs. Those with high utilisation are requested to submit statistics and information on their utilisation. Pharmacist inspectors can then focus attention on those suspected of inappropriate use. If there is a conviction, the Medical Council would also convene an enquiry and appropriate disciplinary action including removal from the register would be instituted. Having said that, I must emphasise that these "black sheep" constitute only a small minority of the pharmacist and medical professions.

Both the Police and the Customs operate hotlines to encourage members of the public to report drug information. The Department of Health also has a hotline for the public to report information related to the illegal sale of drugs. It introduced a computerised drug/pharmaceutical information hotline in March 1995 to promote public awareness of the importance of proper use of drugs.

8

Medical Council of Hong Kong

Discipline within the medical profession is the responsibility of the Medical Council of Hong Kong. The main function of the Medical Council is the maintenance of ethics, professional standards and discipline in the medical profession. It provides a Professional Code and Conduct to all registered medical practitioners to serve as the guidance. Paragraph 4 in Part II of the Council’s Professional Code and Conduct is about “abuse of dangerous or scheduled drugs" and gives clear guidelines to medical practitioners on relevant provisions in the law, infringement of which may result in disciplinary proceedings.

The Medical Registration Ordinance and the Medical Practitioners (Registration and Disciplinary Procedure) Regulations provide the legal framework for the Council to take disciplinary proceedings against registered medical practitioners. In the past four years, a total of eight medical practitioners were successfully convicted and disciplined by the Medical Council on the basis of either conviction at court for the offence of failing to keep proper records of dangerous drugs, or for professional misconduct in prescribing drugs otherwise than in bona fide treatment.

A Working Group under the Medical Council of Hong Kong was set up in February 1995 to address the subject of "proper prescription and dispensing of dangerous drugs by registered medical practitioners". Recommendations were made at its meeting in February 1995 to strengthen the wording of Paragraph 4 of the Council’s Professional Code and Conduct by adding a requirement for all medical practitioners to account for all dangerous drugs and to maintain proper records of all dangerous drugs. This will obviate the need for going through court proceedings before the Council could take disciplinary action against registered medical practitioners who fail to comply with the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance.

The Medical Council also intends to provide legal training to its members, so that its sentences are less likely to be overturned on appeal. The Council will increase the number of cases it hears to deal more swiftly with complaints against doctors accused of malpractice.

The way ahead

Mr President, the Government is determined to combat the illegal supply of drugs. Progress has already been made on the Forward Action Plan since the Summit in March. Amendments to the Drug Trafficking (Recovery of Proceeds) Ordinance are currently before this Council. So are proposals to raise the maximum penalty levels stipulated in the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance. We are proposing in the Administration of Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) (No.2) Bill 1995 currently before this Council that the maximum penalties should be increased from a fine of $30,000 and imprisonment of 1 year to a fine of $100,000 and imprisonment of 2 years.

9

The Pharmacy and Poisons (Amendment) Regulation 1995 introduced by the Secretary for Health and Welfare earlier this afternoon and approved, seeks to raise the maximum penalty prescribed in the Regulation and equate them to the maximum level kept by the principle ordinance. These proposals are aim to provide a much greater deterrent effect in combating the illegal sale of drugs. The Poisons Lists (Amendment) Regulation 1995, also approved earlier this afternoon, tightened control over the sale of cough medicines.

As part of the Government’s Forward Action Plan, the Department of Health has plans to strengthen its law enforcement actions to reduce the supply of illicit drugs through retail premises. The frequency of test purchases and inspections of drug retail premises are being increased again. The number of test purchases conducted in 1994 was 6,128, as compared to 1,389 in 1993. The number of inspections of pharmacies in 1994 was 476, as compared to 248 in 1993. There will be an additional 4 pharmacist inspectors and 1 casual worker deployed this year. The frequency of inspections will be further enhanced by more effective staff deployment and re-prioritisation of activities in the Pharmaceutical Division of the Department of Health. A special task force will also be set up later this year.

In addition to the above, we will step up efforts to Combat drug abuse by providing in this year the Police Narcotics Bureau with 38 additional police officers to increase its surveillance activities as well as several hundred more policemen on the beat.

The Department of Health is holding discussions with the medical and pharmacist professions to come up with possible new measures that could be introduced to further tighten control on malpractice and illegal sale of dnigs. The Medical Council is also considering new measures to control the situation.

Both the Department of Health, and, I have no doubt, the Medical Council will reflect on the many ideas in this area put forward by Members of this debate.

As I have said before in this Council, the Government is committed to a multifaceted approach to tackle the drug problem. This includes co-ordination at district levels, targeting preventive education and publicity at high-risk groups, and promotion of the parental role to steer their children away from drugs. The provision of more treatment and rehabilitation facilities for drug abusers is also a priority. This includes the establishment of additional residential treatment centres for young opiate drug abusers and a new counselling centre for psychotropic substance abusers, as well as the provision of additional substance abuse clinics.

We will introduce further measures as the situation warrants. We will shortly review the penalties for illegal sale of drugs and will propose changes if necessary.

10

Mr President, the sentiment behind the motion and the amendment is one which the Administration supports. We agree that stringent measures should be taken to prevent the inappropriate sale of dangerous drugs. As I have explained in my speech earlier, we are already devoting a great deal of effort to do so. But enforcement alone is not enough. We encourage the public, particularly our young people, to stay away from drugs, through our preventive education and publicity programmes. We provide treatment and rehabilitation programmes to wean drug addicts away from this pernicious habit, and to reintegrate into society. We shall do more of these things. But above all, we need the support and the active participation of the community to "beat drugs" together.

Thank you, Mr President.

End/Wedncsday, June 21, 1995

Waste Disposal (Charges for Disposal of Waste) Regulation *****

Following is the speech by Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the motion debate on the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

First of all I should say that I am most grateful to the Hon. Vincent Cheng, Chairman of the Case Conference on the Waste Disposal (Charges for Disposal of Waste) Regulation, and Members of the Case Conference for their careful scrutiny and general support of the Regulation.

Our objective in introducing this Regulation is to continue the implementation of the polluter pays principle and to provide an economic incentive to waste producers to reduce waste generation by sorting and reuse, thereby reducing the amount of waste going to landfills. At this point I should perhaps remind Members that waste disposal in Hong Kong is heavily subsidised-taxpayers paid $600 million in 1994 for the disposal of waste generated by commerce and industry. Nevertheless, the initial charge levels, which seek to recover only 50% of the landfill costs, are moderate and should be affordable to business. Households will not be affected since domestic waste, whether collected by the Municipal Councils or private collectors, is exempted from the scheme.

11

Having regard to the polluter pays principle, we have carefully considered different charging arrangements. The charging scheme for disposal of waste at landfills was worked out after extensive consultations with the trade and relevant bodies. We believe that charging on a per tonne basis is the most equitable as the amount of charge is directly related to the amount of waste disposed. This approach is also advocated by some legislators and a number of the industry associations we have consulted.

However, representations made to the Administration indicated that some sectors of the construction industry would prefer charging on the basis of per vehicle rather than per tonne. After careful consideration, we are prepared to agree to the amendment to the Regulation moved by the Hon. Ronald Arculli to allow charging on either a per tonne basis or a per vehicle basis. This should provide adequate flexibility to the truck drivers, who can choose the option best suited to their business practice. However, there are shortcomings to charging on a per vehicle basis as it does not discourage overloading and, with over 3,000 vehicles visiting landfills daily and nearly three vehicles to be handled every minute during peak periods, the possibility of abuses and fraud may arise. We will therefore need to monitor the scheme carefully to ensure that the landfill users do not abuse the flexibility that the dual charging arrangement permits.

Let me remind Members that the Regulation tabled at this Council sets out the levels of charges under the landfill charging scheme. The detailed charging arrangements, such as the collection method, are not specified in the Regulation. The intention was to allow the Director of Environmental Protection to work out the most practical arrangements in consultation with the parties concerned. The question we now put before Members arc rather the Regulations and the Schedule to the Regulations pertaining to the level of charges are reasonable and acceptable to Members. It has always been the Administration intent to enter into consultation with the trade to work out the payment methods. If Legislators approved the scale of charges we have always have the intention that the actual payments will not come into effect until September this year and that is to enable us sufficient time to enter into discussion and agreement with the trade. Recent events - and I refer here to the blockade of the Southeast NT landfill and other landfills by truck drivers over the last weekend - illustrate that some waste collectors arc concerned about upfront payment of landfill charges. Let me say again that I and I .... ring up the radio last Friday to repeat that I personally share their view. Waste collectors or drivers should not be the party require to pay upfront charges. They are not the polluters, the waste producers are. fherefore when we negotiate the blockade or the incident, the Government agree that we will set up a working group of representatives from the Government, truck drivers and waste producers, to discuss the detailed charging arrangements. We have also undertaken not to begin levying the charge until there is broad agreement on these arrangements. We also undertake not to begin ... in the charge until there is broad agreement on this arrangements as that is always been our intention that is the reason why we put the effect today administratively to ... I am pleased to note that all the parties concerned have indicated their support for the polluter pays principle including the truck drivers and I hope that all parties concerned to work in good faith to expedite an agreement. 1 therefore look forward to the working group having constructive discussions and finalising the charging and payment arrangements in the near future.

12

Members have also raised a few points during their speeches on the Regulations. The Hon Ronald Arculli mentioned the construction industry's concern about the provision of public dumps and sorting facilities for construction waste. I would like to assure Members that sufficient public dumps will be made available in the near future. In addition to the existing public dump at Tseung Kwan O, two more will operate in the next few months - the Aldrich Bay barging point in August and the Tuen Mun Area 38 public dump in November. Two further public dumps will come on stream in the next two years.

1 believe the construction industry is well aware of the need to practise better segregation of waste on site in order to increase the proportion of waste that can be diverted away from landfills. For those who cannot do so, we have set up a sorting plant for construction waste at the Southeast NT landfill. It has been commissioned in stages since March 1995 and will be in full operation by July this year. Depending on the demand for its services, we shall review the need for setting up similar facilities at other landfill sites.

End/Wednesday, June 21. 1995

Employment Ordinance *****

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in moving a resolution under Section 67A of the Employment Ordinance in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the motion standing in my name.

The purpose of this resolution is to revise the existing wage limit for the purpose of calculating severance payment and long service payment under the Employment Ordinance.

When the Employment Ordinance was first enacted in 1968. it applied to all manual employees regardless of wage levels, and to those non-manual employees who earned not more than $1,500 a month. The wage ceiling for non-manual employees was then reviewed and revised regularly to take account of wage movements. It was raised to $11,500 in 1987.

13

In June 1990, this Council agreed to remove the wage ceiling so that all manual and non-manual employees, irrespective of their wages, could be covered under the ordinance. To limit the employers' liabilities, a wage limit of $15,000 # month was specified for the purpose of calculating the severance payment and long service payment. This wage limit was set at $15,000 at that time, having regard to the fact that employees with a monthly wage in excess of $15,000 were usually and adequately protected by contracts of employment which provided for retirement benefits, as well as the wage movements since the limit was first revised in 1987.

After more than four years, the wage limit of $15,000 is now due for revision. Having regard to the wage movement over the past few years, we propose that the wage limit for the purpose of calculating severance payment and long service payment under the Employment Ordinance be increased to $22,500 per month. The Labour Advisory Board has been consulted and has given unanimous support to this proposal. The Board has also agreed that the wage limit should be reviewed once every two years in future.

Mr President, I beg to move.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Employees' Compensation (A) Bill: Committee Stage * * * ♦ *

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Financial Services, Mrs Lessie Wei, at the Committee Stage Amendments to the Employees' Compensation (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move that the clauses specified be amended as set out in the paper circulated to Members. The main purpose of the amendments is to specify the minimum amount of insurance cover for different employment situations to be purchased by employers in respect of their liabilities under the Employees' Compensation Ordinance. There are also other minor technical and drafting amendments.

To avoid any misinterpretation of the term "construction work", a definition of this term is added to section 38, through clause 3. The meaning of "structure" and "works" referred to in the definition of construction work is specified in the proposed Fifth Schedule, through clause 9.

14

Definitions of "company”, "holding company", "group of companies" and "subsidiary" are also added to section 38, through clause 3.

Proposed section 40(1) is amended, through clause 4, to clarify that the minimum amount of insurance cover to be purchased by an employer in respect of his liabilities under the Employees’ Compensation Ordinance and independently of that Ordinance, shall not be less than the amount specified in the proposed Fourth Schedule. Correspondingly, the Fourth Schedule is amended, through clause 9. Instead of specifying therein a minimum insurance cover for all employers, the proposed minimum is $100 million per event in the case of employers employing not more than 200 employees, and $200 million per event if the number of employees exceeds 200. This amendment is to address Members' concern that reasonable and adequate compensation should be provided for employees in case of an accident involving a large number of victims.

Proposed section 40(1 AA) is added, through clause 4(2), to provide that a principal contractor in the construction industry may take out a blanket policy of an insurance for an amount not less than that specified in the Fourth Schedule, that is, $200 million per event, in respect of his liability and those of his sub-contractors under the Ordinance and independently of the Ordinance. The blanket policy will suit the complex circumstances of construction sites where vertical and lateral cross-liabilities may arise. The proposed minimum insurance is specified in the Fourth Schedule in clause 9.

Proposed section 40(1 AB) is added, through clause 4(2), to provide that a group of companies may take out a blanket policy of insurance for an amount not less than that specified in the Fourth Schedule, that is, $200 million per event, in respect of the liabilities of the companies, bodies corporate and corporations in the group under the Ordinance and independently of the Ordinance. This proposed minimum is specified in the Fourth Schedule in clause 9.

Proposed section 40(1 C) is added, through clause 4(2), to clarify that the minimum amount of insurance cover each employer is required to take out will be ascertained by reference to the number of employees in relation to whom the policy is in force and in accordance with the provisions of the Fourth Schedule. For principal contractors in the construction industry and group companies, the minimum amount of insurance to be taken out will be irrespective of the number of employees and in the case of principal contractors in the construction industry, the policy is also irrespective of the number of sites on which construction work is undertaken by the principal contractors.

15

Proposed section 4O(1C) in clause 4(2) also clarifies that the amount of insurance required for policies may be inclusive of interest, costs and expenses indemnified under the policy and other costs and expenses incurred by the employer and recoverable from the insurer under the policy. If a principal contractor has taken out a blanket policy of insurance covering his liability and those of his subcontractors, the principal contractor and the sub- contractors insured will be regarded as having complied with the compulsory insurance requirements. Similarly, if companies in a group have taken out a blanket policy of insurance covering the liabilities of the companies, bodies corporate and corporations in the group, all those in the group insured shall be regarded as having complied with such requirements.

Section 42 is amended, through clause 5, to clarify that an insurer is only liable for the amount of the liability of the employer not exceeding the available amount covered by the policy of insurance issued, notwithstanding the obligation imposed upon the employer by the Ordinance to insure for a higher amount.

Clause 9 amends the Fourth Schedule to specify the minimum insurance cover to be purchased by employers in different employment situations. It also adds a new Fifth Schedule to explain the meaning of "structure" and "works" referred to in the definition of "construction work".

Mr Chairman, I beg to move.

♦ ♦ * *

Mr President,

I move that new clauses 4A, 4B, 7A heading before the new clause 10 and the new clause 10 as set out in the paper circulated to Members be read the second time.

Clause 4A amends the item number (f) to (g) in section 40A to require an insurer to include information on the amount of liabilities insured in a policy of insurance. Clause 4B amends section 41 to require the amount of liability insured under a policy to be shown in a notice of insurance to be put up in the workplace. An employer who provides false or misleading information in the notice commits an offence and is liable to a fine of S50,000.

Proposed section 44B is added, through new clause 7A, to provide that where a blanket insurance policy has been taken out by group companies and where the insurance limit has been exhausted, the subsidiary company concerned shall be liable for any outstanding claim in respect of any injury to an employee. If the employee is unable to recover payment of compensation from the subsidiary company concerned, the holding company shall be liable to pay the amount to the employee.

16

To assist an employee of a subsidiary company to identify the holding company or companies for this purpose, the employee will be entitled to put a written request to the subsidiary company for the names and addresses of all its holding companies also insured under the same insurance policy. The subsidiary company concerned commits an offence if it fails to comply with the request within seven days after the date of issue of the request, and is liable to a fine of $10,000.

A consequential amendment is made, through new clause 10, to include in the definition of "employer” in section 2 of the Employees Compensation Assistance Ordinance, a holding company which is liable to pay an amount of compensation or damages to an employee of its subsidiary.

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Mr Chairman,

1 move that new clauses 4A, 4B, 7A heading before the new clause 10 and the new clause 10 be added to the bill.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Securities (Amendment) Bill 1995 ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Financial Services, Mrs Lessie Wei, in moving the second reading of the Securities (Amendment) Bill 1995 in Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the second reading of the Securities (Amendment) Bill 1995.

The objective of the Bill is to strengthen further the risk management systems in our securities market. Specifically, the Bill seeks to empower the Securities and Futures Commission to make rules to facilitate tracking of speculative short selling of securities and to deter market manipulation. It also seeks to enable the Commission to prescribe, by rules, position limits and other conditions in relation to trading of stock options.

17

Short selling of certain designated stocks at the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong is permitted subject to compliance with Section 80 of the Securities Ordinance and relevant regulations of the Stock Exchange. In practice, under Section 80 of the Securities Ordinance, a person needs to have established stock borrowing arrangements before he is able to sell short. Under the relevant Stock Exchange regulations, a short selling Stock Exchange member has to register as such, and to comply with certain reporting requirements. Such requirements are to help the regulators identify and track sales of borrowed stocks, and identify speculative trading.

It has come to light that certain investors who are not members of the Stock Exchange, hence not bound by its regulations, have borrowed stocks for selling through the Stock Exchange without communicating such borrowing to the selling Stock Exchange member. That is to say, their right to vest in the purchasers the securities they have contracted to sell have not been clearly identified. Such practices negate the effectiveness of the existing mechanism for identifying and tracking sales of borrowed stock.

The proposed amendment to section 146 of the Securities Ordinance will enable the Commission to make rules to rectify the situation. The rules will complement the Stock Exchange regulations on short selling.

Separately, in connection with the trading in stock options which will commence in August this year, the Bill seeks to enable the Commission to prescribe, by rules, position limits and other conditions including reporting requirements in relation to any person's activity in the stock options market. Such measures, as part of the risk management systems, are considered necessary for deterring market manipulation and providing better market surveillance information.

Thank you, Mr President.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

18

Securities (Clearing Houses) (Amendment) Bill 1995 ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Financial Services, Mrs Lessie Wei, in moving the second reading of the Securities (Clearing Houses) (Amendment) Bill 1995 in Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the second reading of the Securities (Clearing Houses) (Amendment) Bill 1995.

The purpose of the Bill is to seek’disapplication of certain aspects of insolvency or bankruptcy laws in respect of futures transactions conducted at the Hong Kong Futures Exchange Ltd. in order to lessen the potential for a chain reaction of financial market defaults. The provisions being sought are already available to securities transactions conducted at the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Ltd. under the Securities (Clearing Houses) Ordinance.

When the Ordinance was enacted in July 1992, it was decided to limit the ambit of the Ordinance to securities transactions initially and to defer application of the Ordinance to futures transactions because trading in futures contracts was not very active at the time.

Since the enactments of the Ordinance, transactions conducted at the Futures Exchange have increased significantly. In view of this, it is considered necessary that futures transactions be also brought under the Ordinance. The objective is to minimise the systemic risks which could arise from defaults by individual members of the Futures Exchange. Specifically, the Bill seeks to enable the clearing house of the Futures Exchange to isolate any default and complete settlement with non-defaulters, a process which otherwise might be frozen for an extended period under insolvency or bankruptcy laws and would potentially cause the counterparties of the defaulter themselves to default. . '1 • .

I would like to mention that since the 1987 market crash, there have been no significant default cases involving members of the Futures Exchange. The few cases which did occur were of a minor nature and related mostly to technical errors. The present proposals are made as a result of the continuing effort of the Administration and the regulators to enhance the risk management systems in our securities and futures markets to keep pace with market developments.

Thank you, Mr President.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

- 19 -

Motor vehicles insurance and employees compensation bills

Following is the speech by the acting Secretary for Financial Services, Mrs Lessie Wei, on the resumption of second reading of the Motor Vehicles Insurance (Third Party Risks) (Amendment) Bill 1995 and the Employees’ Compensation air (Amendment) Bill 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Ir

Mr President, -noo

nr<.

I would like to thank the Bills Committee under the chairmanship of the Hon Peter Wong for its careful consideration of the Motor Vehicles Insurance (Third Party Risks) (Amendment) Bill 1995 and the Employees' Compensation (Amendment) Bill 1995. I would also like to express my appreciation to the professional and trade organisations for their valuable comments. Amendments to the Employees’ Compensation (Amendment) Bill 1995 to be moved at the Committee Stage are the product of continuing discussion between the Administration and the insurance industry and the professionals over the past few months.

In respect of third party insurance cover for motor vehicles, the Bills Committee, while considering the proposed limit of $100 million for any one event generally adequate, is concerned that there may be occasions with liabilities exceeding $100 million and the motorist’s assets falling short of the excess liabilities. To address this concern the Motor Insurers’ Bureau has agreed to extend its responsibility to settle any amount which exceeds the prescribed limit of $100 million and which the insured is unable to pay. An Undertaking between the Bureau and the Government to this effect has been arranged for signature at the end of this month.

Turning to employees’ compensation, I wish to stress that it is the Administration’s policy intention to give maximum protection to employees and to provide sufficient insurance cover to employers. In proposing a statutory minimum of $100 million per event, the Administration has taken into consideration the fact that the largest pay out for employees' compensation in any one event so far has been $30 million. However, to address the deep concern expressed by the Bills Committee that the proposed amount may prove inadequate to cover accidents involving a large number of victims, the Administration has, after consultation with the insurance industry, agreed to amend the Bill to require employers employing over 200 employees to obtain a minimum cover of $200 million per event. For employers employing not more than 200 workers, the minimum amount will be $100 million as originally proposed.

20

The multiple tiers of sub-contractorship in the construction industry and the fact that some sub-contractors and their employees may only be working on a very short term basis on a particular site, have made it very difficult to ensure that employees of all the sub-contractors will be protected by some form of insurance cover. In view of this problem, Hong Kong insurers have suggested that principal contractors be permitted to take out blanket insurance cover for their own liabilities as well as those of their subcontractors. After extensive consultation with the Hong Kong Construction Association and the insurance industry, the Administration has agreed that a principal contractor may take out a blanket cover of $200 million per event irrespective of the number of employees or the number of sites on which construction work is undertaken by the principal contractor.

The insurance industry and a number of companies have requested that group companies be allowed to take out a blanket policy with a single limit, similar to the arrangement proposed for principal contractors in the construction industry. These companies as well as the insurance industry envisaged considerable difficulties in arranging a separate policy for each company in the group, such as increased administrative work and additional costs to employers. Having considered the case very carefully, the Administration has agreed to allow a blanket policy for group companies. The minimum cover will be $200 million per event irrespective of the number of employees employed by the holding company and its subsidiaries. To safeguard better the interests of injured employees, the holding company which is insured under the same blanket policy will be held responsible for the liability of any of its subsidiaries should the latter's assets be insufficient to meet any claim in excess of the insured limit.

I wish to add that the rights of an injured employee to claim compensation will not be prejudiced by the statutory minimum insurance cover. Liabilities in excess of the insurance cover will be paid out of the assets of the insured (and its holding company, where appropriate). If the insured is unable to meet the claim, the injured will be compensated by the compensation fund maintained by the Employees' Compensation Assistance Fund Board.

Mr President, the Motor Vehicles Insurance (Third Party Risks) (Amendment) Bill 1995 and the Employees' Compensation (Amendment) Bill 1995 are the result of concerted efforts of the Financial Services Branch, the Transport Branch, the Works Branch and the Education and Manpower Branch. I therefore speak also for the Secretary for Transport, the Secretary for Works and the Secretary for Education and Manpower in commending these Bills to Members.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

•5

- 21 -

Pharmacy and poisons ordinance and regulations ♦ ♦ ♦ * *

Following is the speech by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in moving a motion on the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance, Pharmacy and Poisons (Amendment) Regulation 1995 and Poisons List (Amendment) Regulation 1995 in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Mr President,

I move the motion standing in my name on the Order Paper.

The Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance and its subsidiary legislation regulate, inter alia, the registration of pharmaceutical products.

The Amendment Regulations seek, inter alia, to revise penalties provided for under the Pharmacy and Poisons Regulations, which include penalties for offences related to illegal sales of drugs. They also seek to amend the classification of certain drugs and to add new drugs to facilitate up-to-date controls.

Currently, the maximum penalties stipulated in the Pharmacy and Poisons Regulations are lighter for a first or second offence than for a third or subsequent offence.

The penalties for a first or second offence are a fine of $2,500 and $5,000 respectively. Those for a third or subsequent offence are a fine of $10,000 and imprisonment for 12 months. This is still lower than the maximum penalty provided in the Ordinance of a fine of $30,000 and imprisonment for 12 months.

If approved, the Amendment Regulations will abolish the different classifications for first, second and third offences so that, once convicted, a person will be liable to a much higher penalty than before even if he is a first-time or second-time offender.

The penalty levels prescribed in the Regulations have been in force since 1978 and were last revised in 1987. They no longer reflect the severity of the offences and we therefore consider it necessary to increase them.

The Amendment Regulations, therefore, also seek to raise the maximum penalties provided for in the Regulations from a fine of $10,000 and imprisonment for 12 months to the current maximum penalties stipulated in the Ordinance, which are a fine of $30,000 and imprisonment for 12 months. We do so by equating automatically the penalties prescribed in the Regulations to the maximum levels capped by the Ordinance and we hope that by doing so, the Amendment Regulations will provide a much greater deterrent effect in combating problems such as illegal sales of drugs.

22

Separately, we are proposing in the Administration of Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) (No. 2) Bill 1995 introduced into this Council on 10 May that the maximum penalty levels in the Ordinance should be further raised to a maximum fine of $100,000 and imprisonment for two years. If enacted, the Bill will further increase the penalty levels for offences related to illegal sales of drugs, as provided in the Regulations.

Currently, controls over cough medicines containing ingredients such as codeine differ in stringency according to the concentration of codeine, etc. which they contain. The Amendment Regulations, if effected, will tighten controls over cough medicines with lower concentrations of codeine, etc. so that cough medicines, irrespective of the percentage of codeine etc. they contain, will need to have their sales supervised by registered pharmacists, apart from having to be sold only by certain sellers of poisons. By doing so, we hope to minimise the abuse of cough medicines.

The Pharmacy and Poisons Board, the statutory body set up under the Ordinance, has been consulted and supports the Amendment Regulations.

With these remarks, I move the motion.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Provision of park-and-ride facilities being examined ♦ * ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Emily Lau Wai-hing and a reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Administration inform this Council whether it will actively consider the park-and-ride concept by building multi-storey car parks near MTR and KCR stations in an attempt to take cars off the road and to relieve traffic congestion?

23

Reply:

Mr President,

The concept of park-and-ride is to encourage car owners to use trains to continue their journeys into the urban area, thus relieving pressure on the road system. I am pleased to be able to assure Hon Members that the Administration is actively examining how park-and-ride facilities can be provided. Indeed during our recent consultation exercise on measures to address traffic congestion, there Was public support for the provision of more parking facilities in the vicinity of railway stations, in the New Territories.

A start has already been made. I have agreed to earmark S60 million as the Government contribution towards a MTRC proposal to develop a transport interchange at Choi Hung MTR Station, which will incorporate park-and-ride facilities. This will involve the redevelopment of the existing Ping Shek Estate Bus Terminus into a modem transport interchange. The redevelopment proposal will soon be put to the Town Planning Board. Thereafter, Finance Committee will be invited to approve the Government's contribution for this scheme.

Mr President, I can also assure Hon Members that very careful consideration will be given to incorporating park-and-ride facilities at or near some stations along the 3 priority railway systems announced in the Railway Development Strategy. For example^ MTRC will examine the feasibility of park-and-ride facilities at Tseung Kwan O as part of the proposed MTR extension. I shall, likewise, ask the KCRC to see whether such facilities can be provided as part of the Western Corridor Railway project and the Administration will also bear this in mind for the proposed Ma On Shan-Tai Wai line.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

24

City Hall car park * ♦ ♦ * ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Jimmy McGregor and a reply by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Taking into account the shortage of car parking spaces in the Central District, will the Government inform this Council whether there are any restrictions on the rebuilding and reconstruction of the City Hall Car Park to multiply the parking spaces available to the public by several hundred per cent; if so, whether these restrictions can be removed by negotiation in the public interest?

Answer:

Mr President,

The City Hall Car Park is a Government-owned car park. The site is zoned "Govemment/Institution/Community" on the current draft Central District Outline Zoning Plan and is not subject to statutory planning restrictions on the number of public parking spaces to be provided.

However, the car park site together with the City Hall complex forms part of a plan to redevelop the Central District under Phase III of the Central Reclamation Project. The planning proposals are only at a preliminary stage and are subject to further discussions within the Administration and with the Urban Council. But in the meantime we do not consider it prudent to proceed with any redevelopment of the car park on its own.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

25

Comprehensive Social Security Assistance * ♦ * * ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Christine Loh and a reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

In response to a question asked on 22 February 1995 in this Council, the Secretary for Health and Welfare stated that when assessing eligibility for social security assistance, the Health and Welfare Branch will take into account the "nonhousing expenditure required to maintain a reasonable standard of living for households of different sizes." In her reply to a follow-up question, the Secretary stated that the standard rates for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) "dre based on the needs of a person, or a family, for food, clothing, fuel and other household expenses.” In this connection, will the Government inform this Council of: r‘

(a) the breakdown of the amounts assumed for food, clothing, fuel and other household expenses in the calculation of the cunent CSSA standard rates for a family of 4 with two able-bodied adults and two able-bodied children receiving regular schooling;

! j ' •

' f J J

(b) the total amount of non-housing expenditure assumed to the calculation of the current CSSA standard rates required to maintain ”a reasonable standard of living in Hong Kong”; and

’A- -■ ’ • • •

(c) the number of families consisting of two adults and two children with a monthly income, excluding the CSSA allowance which includes a rent allowance below the level required to maintain a reasonable standard of living?

26

Reply:

Mr President,

Before I give an answer to this question, I would like to set the record straight. In response to a question asked in this Council on 22 February 1995,1 did not say that my Branch, in assessing eligibility for social security assistance, would take into account the ’’non-housing expenditure required to maintain a reasonable standard of living for households of different sizes”. What I said was that in the case of public housing, income criteria for assessing eligibility were set by reference to the cost of renting accommodation in the private sector and the non-housing expenditure required to maintain a reasonable standard of living for households of different sizes. I also said that in view of the costs of housing in Hong Kong, it was not surprising to see that income eligibility criteria in this field were different from those used for assessing social security assistance.

The CSSA standard rate for a family of four with two able-bodied adults and two able-bodied children currently stands at $5,100 a month. If the two children concerned were at school then the family would also be eligible for school-related special grants. The total average CSSA payment to a family unit of this composition is currently $7,200 per month. I should add that of the 3,200 four-member CSSA households only 9% or 300 households is of this composition. Most CSSA households of this size contain only one able-bodied adult and three dependants. The average CSSA payment to such households is higher, at $8,200 per month.

As for the standard rate element of the overall payment, I do not have a breakdown of the amount for specific items of food, clothing, fuel and other household expenses assumed in the calculation of this rate. I should like to explain why this is so. When the Public Assistance (now CSSA) Scheme was set up in 1971, its basic rates covered only the cost of food based on recommendations originally made by the Hong Kong Council of Social Service as to what was required for an adequate diet based on nutritional advice.

The basic rates were then substantially improved in 1972 to take into account other essential items of household expenditure on, for example, fuel and light, clothing and footwear, durable goods, transport and services. The method then used was to relate the cost of these items to the cost of food according to the weighting given to each item in the then Modified Consumer Price Index which showed the expenditure pattern of low income families in Hong Kong. By using the index weightings, an amount for these items proportionate to the amount provided for food was then worked out.

27

Since then, the rates have been adjusted to take into account inflation when necessary. Various supplements to the rates have been introduced to meet the needs of clients. When we introduced the CSSA scheme in 1993, most of these supplements were then subsumed into the standard rates. Real increases to the rates have also been made which have resulted in the CSSA standard rates for a single able-bodied adult and a single able-bodied elderly person being increased by more than 16 times and 24 times respectively since 1971, whereas inflation, as measured by the-Consumer Price Index (A), has increased by less than 7 times over the same period. As a result of the subsuming of supplements into the standard rates and these substantial real increases in rates, the relationship between the standard rate payment and costs in regard to the range of specific needs originally identified has been lost over time.

Since, as I said earlier, CSSA rates are not fixed by reference to maintaining "a reasonable standard of living in Hong Kong", it is not possible for me to respond fully to the second and third parts of this question. But it is important to note that CSSA payments comprise not only standard rates but also a range of special grants for rent (up to $2,858 per month for a family of four), educational expenses (which on average amount to $1,680 per child a year), water charges, telephone charges, medical expenses, special diets (ranging from $350 to $670 per month), expenses on child care (which can be up to $3,560 per month for day creche or $1,745 per month for a day nursery place) and travelling, etc. Any consideration of their adequacy must take these special grants fully into account.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

■-<*- • ji. s.

Vacant positions in retail industry ♦ ♦ ♦ * ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Selina Chow and a reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

• / f t

Question:

The Government announced earlier this year that the number of vacant positions in the retail industry stood at a high of 7,151. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) whether retraining programmes catering for the needs of the retail industry have been offered with a view to relieving the acute labour shortage in the industry;

I

28

I.

(b) of the total number of workers trained by the Government under the retraining programme to enter the retail industry; and

C ■ •

(c) whether consideration has been given to providing pre-work counselling to those participating in the retraining programmes?

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) The Employees Retraining Board (ERB) offers both classroom-type retraining courses and On-the-Job Training (OJT) which are designed specifically to equip workers with skills required of jobs in the retail industry. Nine classroom-type retraining courses have been sponsored by the ERB. Most of these courses are on general salesmanship training, covering the basic principles of retailing, sales techniques, customer service techniques, basic communication techniques, telephone skills, social skills, and the use of languages such as English and Putonghua.

As regards the On-the-Job Training Scheme, under this arrangement employers are offered financial incentives to hire employees aged over 40, in the form of reimbursement of up to one-third of the monthly wages of each retrainee for up to the first three months of employment. So far, 137 employers from the wholesale and retail industry have participated in the OJT scheme and the retraining covers areas such as selling techniques and customer servicing.

(b) A total of 930 trainees have participated in courses specifically designed for the retail industry. Of this number, 481 retrainees have attended classroom-type retraining courses offered by the ERB and 449 persons have been placed with employers in the Wholesale and Retail Industry under the OJT scheme.

(c) The retraining programmes for the retail industry already provide prework counselling for the retrainees which last for 1 or 2 days. For example, in addition to teaching sales techniques, the course "Salesmanship Training" also includes sessions on developing positive working attitudes, self-confidence and enhancing communication skills. This sort of counselling is usually provided by social workers employed by the training bodies or the course instructors themselves, who possess considerable experience in career counselling and knowledge of the relevant industry.

29

Pre-work counselling is also offered to retrainees who enrol in the Job Search Skills Course as an integral part of the course content which aims at motivating retrainees to adopt a positive working attitude, improving their communication skills and interviewing techniques, and informing them of the latest changes in the job market.

In addition, ERB also makes arrangements for employers and personnel managers to contribute to pre-work counselling by giving career talks during the course of the retraining programmes. Visits to actual places of work are also arranged wherever possible to allow retrainees to acquire first-hand experience of the actual working environment.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Criminal records of listed company directors ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Huang Chen-ya and a reply by the acting Secretary for Financial Services, Mrs Lessie Wei, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

In view of the negative effects on shareholders and the status of Hong Kong as a financial centre brought about by the recent repeated discoveries of non-disclosure of past criminal records by the directors of some listed companies, will the Government inform this Council what measures have been put in place by both the Government and the Securities and Futures Commission to safeguard the interests of small shareholders; and what steps will be taken to restore the confidence of investors?

Answer:

Mr President, the Securities and Futures Commission and the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited have since the recent discoveries of non-disclosure of past criminal records by some directors of some listed companies, formed a working party to consider the existing rules for disclosure of information with a view to determining whether changes need to be made. The main issues under consideration are -

30

3.

* the appropriate scope of offences that have to be disclosed so as to include all relevant offences, particularly those relating to fraud or dishonesty or breaches of securities, companies and related legislation,

* the appropriateness of existing due diligence requirements on sponsors and underwriters, and

* the appropriateness and sufficiency of the disclosure requirements for prospectus under the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 32).

The working party will soon release a document for public consultation.

End/Wednesday. June 21,1995

Catering industry not exempted from Trade Effluent Surcharge

*****

Following is a question by the Hon James l ien and a reply by the Secretary for the Planning, Environment and Lands, Mr Bowen Leung, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Following the implementation of the Sewage Services (Trade Effluent Surcharge) Regulation on 1 April 1995, the water bills to be paid by various operators in the catering industry have increased significantly. I he increase which can be as high as 100% for some restaurants, will seriously affect the development of the catering industry and tourism. In order to avoid the closure ol restaurants as a result of soaring water charges, which would aggravate the territory s unemployment problem, will the Government inform this Council :

(a) whether consideration will be given to exempting the catering industry from the newly levied effluent surcharge or reducing the surcharge imposed on the catering industry as much as possible, and whether assistance will be given to restaurant operators in the installation of suitable effluent treatment facilities so as to reduce the extent of pollution caused by the discharged effluent;

(b) whether it will consider granting a grace period: and

31

(c) whether the procedures for the laboratory tests of waste water can be revised to allow the 8,000-odd existing operators of restaurants to arrange laboratory tests for the effluent discharged by their establishments on a collective basis, so as to reduce the expenses and the time spent by the entire industry on the waste water testing procedures?

Reply:

Mr President,

In answering this question, I believe it would be useful for me to first recapitulate the background to the charging scheme.

Members will recall that, since this Council held an adjournment debate on the "Strategic Sewage Disposal Scheme" in December 1991, the Polluter Pays Principle has received wide support in this Chamber. This support was echoed during the public consultation on sewage charges in the autumn of 1993, and reaffirmed by this Council during a further motion debate on the charging scheme on 1 December 1993.

When the Sewage Services Bill, which provides for the sewage charges, was introduced into this Council in July 1994, and subsequently, when the Regulations setting out the precise rate and method of charging were tabled in February this year, there was further scrutiny of the Polluter Pays Principle and the precise charging scheme by which we proposed to give effect to this principle. To say that the discussions on the Bill and its Regulations were thorough is an understatement. The Bills Committee met on seven occasions; the Regulations Committee on five. The outcome of these discussions, which was widely reported in the media, was broad agreement that the charging scheme is fair, reasonable, modest and affordable for all.

Members will recall also that sewage charges seek to recover only the operating costs of sewage services, not the capital costs; that the basic charging rate for sewage services is set at $1.2 per cubic metre, as against $4.58 per cubic metre for water supply; and that the Trade Effluent Surcharge was agreed to by industry. Moreover, this Council formed a sub-committee in March 1995 to consider how the charge for heavy water users could be further alleviated. Consequently, the Administration agreed to amend the Sewage Services (Sewage Charge) Regulation to reduce the discharge factor to 70%.

Turning to the Honourable Member's question :

32

On (a), the Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) value, discharge factor and TES rate are stipulated in the law and will be applied fairly to all waste water dischargers who are obliged to pay the TES. The Government cannot therefore reduce or exempt the payment in respect of any particular sector of the community. To do so would violate the Polluter Pays Principle and be unfair to those industries who have agreed to pay. However, it is possible for restaurant operators themselves - and indeed all operators subject to the TES - to reduce the charge by reducing the amount of pollution they discharge - this is in accordance with the Polluter Pays Principle, and not complicated, such as by reducing water consumption: by reducing the strength of their effluent through properly installing and maintaining on-site treatment facilities; and by properly maintaining grease traps. How these measures will help is explained clearly in a simple pamphlet which EPD has made available to restaurant operators since 1993. It is now being redistributed. We have also held several briefings for the restaurant operator representatives. Under the present legislation, operators can also apply for a review of the COD value or the discharge factor applicable to their effluent by producing evidence to the Drainage Authority. Assistance can also be given to restaurant operators for installing treatment facilities. This assistance is available from the Drainage Authority, which operates an enquiry hotline service; from the Environmental Protection Department’s Local Control Offices, which give advice on appropriate effluent treatment facilities; including a booklet on properly designing, installing, and maintaining grease traps; from the Industry Department's Development and Support Division, from the Hong Kong Productivity Council, and from the Centre for Environmental Technology.

On (b), the present Sewage Services legislation does not allow for a ’’grace period’’. The Ordinance makes it clear that the Drainage Authority has a duty to issue a bill for TES and that the bill must be paid by the consumer or agent.

* j

On (c), which refers to laboratory tests, at a meeting between the Administration and restaurant operators on 16 June 1995, the Administration agreed that the trade could carry out a sampling survey to confirm their COD value and discharge factor of their effluent. The trade was also prepared to fund the survey. Details are still being discussed.

End/Wednesday. June 21, 1995

33

Convention on civil aspects of child abduction * ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Simon Ip and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Administration inform this Council:

(a) whether, and if so when, it intends to extend to Hong Kong the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction 1980;

(b) whether any consultation with interested bodies or organisations will be conducted; if so, with whom and when; and

(c) what are the necessary formalities and procedures for extending the Convention to Hong Kong and how long these will take?

Reply:

The purpose of the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction 1980 is to provide an effective international mechanism for ensuring the speedy return home of a child abducted to a place overseas in violation of a custody order. About 30 countries, including the United Kingdom, arc parties to the Convention.

We are actively considering the question of the need for this Convention to be extended to Hong Kong. The Law Society of Hong Kong, family judges in the District Court, the Family Section of the Legal Aid Department, and some private practitioners in family law have already been consulted on this matter.

The Convention may be extended to Hong Kong by the United Kingdom under Article 39. It would be necessary for Hong Kong to enact domestic legislation prior to the extension in order to be able to discharge obligations in accordance with the Convention. As the extension would create new international rights and obligations affecting Hong Kong, consultation with the Chinese side of the Joint Liaison Group would also be required. It is difficult to assess how long consultation with the Chinese side might take and the time which would then be needed to draft and pass related domestic legislation in view of other legislative priorities, were a decision taken to proceed with the extension.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

34

Rental income loss incurred by vacant public housing flats

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Fred Li Wah-ming and a written reply by the Secretary for Housing, Mr Dominic Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

According to the latest information provided by the Housing Department, 40% of the 11,200 vacant public housing flats have been vacant for more than six months while 1,257 flats have been vacant for over one year. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the total loss in rental income incurred by these vacant flats in the 1994-95 financial year;

(b) whether the Housing Department has any plan to allocate these vacant flats to overcrowded families in the near future; if so, what the detailed plan is; if not, why not?

Answer:

Mr President,

(a) At the end of March 1995, there were 11,200 lettable flats left vacant for different reasons, and the vacancy period varied from one month to over a year. Arithmetically, the loss in rental income in 1994-95 was about $6 million.

(b) Vacant flats are earmarked for allocation to different categories of applicants, including people on the General Waiting List, overcrowded families living in public housing estates and families affected by the Housing Department's clearance and redevelopment exercises. In 1995-96, a quota of 3,000 flats is reserved for transfers and relief of overcrowding from sitting tenants : 1,000 for inter-estate applications and 2,000 for intra-cstatc applications.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

35

Hospice care to AIDS patients ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ *

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Conrad Lam Kui-shing and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the allocation of additional funds to provide hospice care to an additional 400 patients this year, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) whether terminal AIDS patients are eligible to receive hospice care under this additional quota; if not, why not;

(b) what are the differences, if any, between the hospice care available to AIDS patients and that available to other terminal patients; and

(c) of the Government’s short-term, medium-term and long-term strategies of providing hospice care to AIDS patients, as well as the resources required?

Reply:

Hospice care in public hospitals is provided on a referral basis. It has hitherto catered for terminal cancer patients who constitute the bulk of the terminally ill. The need to expand hospice care services to other patients is recognised, and in view of the present small number of AIDS patients, the Hospital Authority is planning to designate initially one hospice care unit to take care of these patients.

Given the nature of the illness, carers providing hospice services to AIDS patients require special training and preparation to cater for the fluctuating medical conditions and specific needs of these patients. It is expected that AIDS patients would also require more home-based services as well as psycho-social support and counselling.

Whilst in the long term the provision of hospice care will be extended on a need basis to all hospice units in public hospitals, the AIDS Trust Fund provides a source of funding for non-profit making organisations to develop service initiatives in this relatively new area.

End/Wednesday, June 21,1995

36

Assignment of legal aid cases to a barrister

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Elsie Tu and a written reply by the acting Chief Secretary, Mr Michael Suen, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Will the Government inform this Council of the following details concerning a junior barrister in private practice who is the husband of the Deputy Director of the Legal Aid Department:

(a) how many times (if any) this barrister has been assigned in civil and criminal legal aid cases during the period 1 January 1994 to 1 May 1995;

(b) what was the duration originally contemplated in each of these civil and criminal assignments;

(c) whether the nature of the assigned civil and criminal cases included mitigation, and/or appeal against sentence or conviction or against both; and

(d) what remuneration was paid in respect of each civil and criminal case?

Reply :

Mr President,

The barrister in question has some 30 years' professional experience. During the period from 1 January 1994 to 1 May 1995 he was assigned 17 legal aid cases, and the remuneration paid on these cases up to mid-June 1995 amount to $820,300. Detailed answers to questions (a) - (d) arc set out in the following table

37

Types of Cases (a) No. of Cases (b) Duration originally contemplated in assignments

Civil cases 1 1 day

2 1 day

3 Advice only

4 Not known

5 Not known

6 Advice only

Criminal Cases 7 about 4 weeks

8 about 1 week

9 !4 day

10 about 1 week

11 about 1 week instructed on v. urgent basis

12 less than 1 week

13 3 months

14 Yi day

15 % day

16 Advice only

17 about 1 week

End/Wednesday, June 21,1995

(c) Nature of Cases (d) Remuneration paid

) All Personal Injury ) cases. In civil ) cases, there is no ) mitigation, and/or ) appeal against ) sentence or ) conviction. $10,000 $24,000 $11,700 So far no payment has been made So far no payment has been made So far no payment has been made

Trial Trial Magistracy appeal Trial Trial Trial Trial District Court appeal Magistracy appeal Advice only Trial $144,400 $20,500 So far no payment has been made $84,500 So far no payment has been made $29,100 $415,000 So far no payment has been made $11,500 $6,000 $63,600 Total $820,300

38

Overseas duty visits of department heads *****

Following is a question by the Hon Tam Yiu-chung and a written reply by the Secretary for Economic Services, Mr Gordon Siu, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of overseas duty visits made by the Postmaster General since he assumed office in May 1992. as well as the total number of days spent and the amount of expenses incurred on such visits;

(b) whether the Government has any system in place for scrutinising applications for overseas duty visits from heads of departments; if so, what the system is;

(c) if the answer to (b) is in the negative, whether the Government will consider requesting heads of department to submit their plans on overseas duty trips to the relevant policy secretaries for scrutiny and approval each year; and

(d) what criteria will be taken consideration in determining whether it is necessary for heads of departments to attend overseas conferences?

Reply:

Mr President.

The Postmaster General made a total of 18 overseas duty visits since he assumed office in May 1992. On 5 other occasions, the Postmaster General has undertaken duty visits while on vacation leave. The number of working days involved is 164. and the expenses incurred are $ 1.1 million.

i.

39

Expenses for overseas duty visits made by heads of department and other departmental officers are subject to scrutiny by policy secretaries through the examination and endorsement of Departmental Expenses in the context of the annual draft Estimates. Policy Secretaries also monitor departmental expenditure through the regular Programme Reviews with Controlling Officers. Where acceptance of an advantage or sponsorship is involved in the visits, approval from the Civil Service Branch is required.

In determining whether it is necessary for heads of department to attend overseas conferences or undertake overseas duty visits, the following criteria will be taken into consideration: the nature of the event, its relevance to the work of the department, the appropriate level of representation required, and whether the visit is essential to pursue or protect Hong Kong's interests.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Number of beggers in busy streets increased ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Timothy Ha and a written reply by the Secretary for Security, Mr Peter Lai, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

The number of beggars at busy locations in the territory is on the increase. The presence of these beggars, some of whom have come from other places, greatly affects the tidiness of the territory. In view of this, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) whether a survey has been conducted to find out the age, sex, nationality and methods of begging of beggars; if so, what the results are;

(b) whether measures have been put in place to curb begging activities;

(c) of the number of prosecutions instituted in the past three years together with the percentage of successful prosecutions;

(d) whether the Social Welfare Department has provided sufficient assistance to beggars so that they will give up begging; and

40

(e) whether the Immigration Department has taken steps to prevent those who have come to the territory as tourists from begging; if so, what these steps are; if not, why not?

.... •

j. . V <■'

Reply :

Mr President,

(a) The Government has not conducted any surveys to find out the age, sex, nationality and methods of begging of beggars in Hong Kong.

(b) It is an offence to beg for alms, or to ask for alms in a threatening manner, under sections 26A and 26B of the Summary Offences Ordinance (Cap. 228). The Police may take enforcement action against people begging, but such action is normally only taken on receipt of a complaint and usually takes the form of a warning in the first instance.

(c) The number of persons prosecuted under sections 26A and 26B of the Summary Offences Ordinance (Cap. 228), and the results of prosecution for the past three years are set out below : -

1221 1992 1223 1994 (Jan to Jun)

No. of 11 21 11 2

persons

prosecuted

Persons 9 19 7 1

convicted t

%of 82% 90% 64% 50%

successful

prosecutions

(L

•« . • '

41

(d) Caseworkers from family services centres operated by the Social Welfare Department offer assistance to beggars in their districts from time to time. Apart from counselling them to give up begging, other social welfare services such as financial assistance, housing assistance, institutional care (for the elderly and the disabled) and employment assistance will also be provided to assist them to give up begging.

(e) All visitors have to satisfy an immigration officer on their arrival at the point of entry that they have the necessary means of support during their period of stay in Hong Kong, before they are permitted to enter. In addition, the Police inform the Immigration Department of the personal particulars of any visitor prosecuted for begging; consideration will then be given to denying his entry in future.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

Issue of fixed penalty tickets ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by the Hon Tam Yiu-chung and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of Fixed Penalty Tickets for parking offences issued by law enforcement officers in each of the past 18 months;

(b) of the criteria adopted by the law enforcement officers in deciding whether a penalty ticket should be issued; and

(c) whether such criteria had been changed in the past 18 months; if so, what the reasons were?

42

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) Figures on the number of fixed penalty tickets issued for parking offences in the past 18 months are annexed.

(b) If a police officer or traffic warden observes that parking offences have been committed, then they may issue fixed penalty tickets. However, officers are encouraged to use their discretion where circumstances so permit, and to warn offenders rather than issue tickets. Such discretion may be exercised, for example, where:-

i. the nature of the offence is trivial; or

ii. there is no intent on the offender's part to commit an offence (e.g. a genuine mistake or misunderstanding).

(c) There has been no change in policy or in the criteria for issuing fixed penalty tickets in respect of parking offences.

Monthly Figures on Number? of Fixed Penalty Tickets issued for Parking Offences; December 1993 to Mav 1995

Dec/93 191,753

Jan/94 194,811

Feb/94 151,942

Mar/94 188,165

Apr/94 174,736

May/94 193,017

Jun/94 159,651

Jul/94 161,993

Aug/94 165,144

Sep/94 166,970

Oct/94 174,287

Nov/94 174,802

Dec/94 171,588

Jan/95 173,669

Fcb/95 152,926

Mar/95 175,371

Apr/95 161,303

May/95 168,964

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

44

Govt passage tax at Cross Harbour Tunnel

*****

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Samuel Wong and a written reply by the Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Banna, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

According to the Government, the inclusion of the government passage tax in the Cross Harbour Tunnel tolls is intended for raising funds to build future crossharbour tunnels so as to reduce tunnel traffic. Will the Government inform this Council:

(a) how much government passage tax has been collected from the date of the opening of the Cross Harbour Tunnel to 31 March 1995; and

(b) how the government passage tax collected is put to use having regard to the fact that the Eastern Harbour Crossing was built by the private sector and that the Western Harbour Crossing project will also be constructed by the private sector at its own expense?

Reply:

Mr President,

The passage tax at the Cross Harbour Tunnel was introduced in June 1984, as a traffic management measure to alleviate congestion and not, as the Honourable Member has suggested, to raise funds for the construction of future cross harbour tunnels per se. The tax collected becomes part of general revenue but, in proposing the passage tax in his 1984 Budget Speech, the Financial Secretary firmly indicated that whilst "it would be improper to accept any strict hypothecation", the increased revenue would be "especially available for transport purposes".

The answers to the specific questions are as follows:-

(a) the total passage tax collected up to 31 March 1995 amounted to $2.04 billion;

(b) huge sums have been invested in transport infrastructure in recent years, for example, over $17 billion in the past 5 years. This far exceeds the amount of passage tax collected. Looking ahead, $30 billion will be spent on new roads in the coming 5 years. Whilst the Eastern Harbour Crossing and the Western Harbour Crossing are privately built, the Government has still invested very substantial sums in land formation for these projects as well as road connections to these tunnels.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

45

Compassionate rehousing * ♦ * ♦ *

Following is a question by the Hon Fred Li Wah-ming and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

According to the existing policy on compassionate rehousing, the Housing Department (HD) reserves, as from 1994-95, a quota of 2,000 public housing flats each year to be used by the Social Welfare Department (SWD) for compassionate rehousing purpose. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council of the following:

(a) of the respective numbers of flats in the compassionate rehousing quota used by the SWD in 1994-95 and 1995/96 (from 1st April up to the present);

(b) of the breakdown of the number of cases approved in 1994/95 and 1995/96 according to the applicants' living conditions (such as living environment, income, family background and so on) and their health conditions (to be supported by medical certificates) which are the two main eligibility criteria for compassionate rehousing adopted by the SWD;

(c) whether there is a set of standardised guidelines commonly used by SWD staff in examining applicants' eligibility; if so, what the contents of the guidelines are; if not, what criteria the SWD staff adopt in the screening process;

(d) whether the HD will, upon receiving compassionate rehousing cases referred by the SWD, re-examine such referrals, or simply the SWD in allocating public housing flats to the applicants; and whether the location of flats offered for rehousing is decided by the SWD or HD; and

(e) whether there are clear internal guidelines within the HD and the SWD which delineating the responsibilities of the two departments in implementing the policy on compassionate rehousing?

46

Reply:

(a) In 1994/95, 2,021 flats were allocated under the compassionate rehousing scheme, exceeding the original quota of 2,000 flats reserved for the scheme. In the first two months of 1995/96, 216 flats were allocated for compassionate rehousing, against the full year quota of 2,000 flats.

(b) The aim of the compassionate rehousing scheme is to help individuals and families who have a genuine and immediate housing need because of specific circumstances and personal factors. Applications for compassionate rehousing are assessed according to a set of criteria which include an assessment of the housing need, family, financial and residential status and relevant social and medical grounds. The applications approved for compassionate rehousing are not categorised in terms of the applicants' living and health conditions and such a breakdown is, therefore, not readily available.

(c) There are standardised guidelines for processing applications for compassionate rehousing which are followed by staff of SWD. The guidelines cover the eligibility criteria, completion of requisite forms and time limits for processing the applications.

(d) HD will not re-examine an applicant's eligibility for compassionate rehousing if the application has been recommended by SWD. In line with the standard allocation procedures for public housing units, HD will only conduct a simple check and pre-letting interview to confirm that an applicant is not currently receiving any other form of public housing benefit, and to ascertain his/her identity and choice of district. Subject to the availability of public rental flats, the applicant's choice of district will be entertained as far as practicable.

(e) There is a clear division of responsibilities between SWD and HD in implementing the compassionate rehousing scheme. While SWD is responsible for assessing the applications and recommending eligible cases for compassionate rehousing, HD is responsible for the allocation of flats. There arc mutually agreed working procedures and channels of communication between the two Departments to ensure the effectiveness of the scheme in helping needy clients.

End/Wedncsday, June 21, 1995

47

Employees’ Re-Training Scheme ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

Following is a question by Dr the Hon Huang Chen-ya and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Miss Jacqueline Willis, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the Employees' Re-Training Scheme, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the total amount of expenditure on "training allowance" in 1994/95 and how does this amount compare with that of 1993/94; and what is the estimated expenditure in 1995/96;

(b) whether the Employees Retraining Board ("the Board") is considering to reduce the amount of allowances granted for attending day and evening courses; if so, what factors will be taken into consideration; and when the result will be released;

(c) of the duration (in terms of hours) of each of the re-training courses currently offered by the Board; and how do this figures compare with those in 1993/94 and 1994/95 respectively;

(d) of the numbers of applicant waiting to attend full-time and evening courses at present respectively, as well as the normal waiting time required; and

(e) whether the Administration has any plan to shorten the training period of such courses so as to increase the number of courses on offer; if so, could the Administration provide a list of the courses whose duration will be shortened, together with the respective periods to be shortened, and a list of the titles and duration of the courses which will be increase as a result?

48

Reply:

Mr President,

(a) The total expenditure on retraining allowance was $21 million in 1993/94 and $51 million in 1994/95. The estimated expenditure on retraining allowance for 1995/96 is $62 million.

(b) The training allowances are reviewed annually and will be considered by the Employees Retraining Board (ERB) at its next meeting. In its review, the ERB will take into account the purpose of the allowances. In the case of full-time day courses, the amount per month for each retrainee is pitched at one-half of the overall median monthly employment earnings of Hong Kong's local labour force computed by the Census & Statistics Department. The retraining allowance for part-time evening courses was designed specifically for the purpose of covering the costs of meal and transportation incurred by retrainees who attend these courses. The result of this year's review on the amounts of retraining allowance is expected to be announced by the ERB after its Board meeting later this month.

(c) The duration of the 144 retraining courses currently offered by the ERB is summarised at Appendix I. The duration of the courses offered throughout the past two years has remained generally unchanged.

’ i • — • <. .. , a - • v;

(d) The number of applicants waiting to attend full-time and part-time (both evening and half-day) retraining courses are 4,033 and 8,301 respectively. The waiting time for attending the Job Search Skills Course is one week. For Job-Specific Skills Courses and the General Skills Courses, the average waiting time ranges from 2 weeks to 4 months depending on the popularity of the courses and the places available.

(e) The training period required for each retraining course varies according to the course content and the level of skills of the retrainees. The duration of the retraining courses is regularly reviewed by ERB. It has no plans to shorten the training period of any retraining courses for the time being.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

49

Unemployed receiving welfare payments * * * * *

Following is a question by the Hon Lee Cheuk-yan and a written reply by the Secretary for Health and Welfare, Mrs Katherine Fok, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

As the current unemployment rate in the territory is the highest recorded so far in nine years, will the Government inform this Council of (a) the number of applications for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) made by people who are unemployed, as well as the total amount of CSSA payments in respect of such cases in the last financial year; and (b) the anticipated amount of CSSA payments to those applicants who are unemployed in the current financial year?

Reply:

For the purpose of this reply, "unemployment cases" among applications for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) are defined as being those cases involving able-bodied persons aged 15-59 who are in normal health but are unemployed and in need of financial support.

In the 1994/95 financial year, about 3,700 applications for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA), representing about 7.4% of all applications made, were classified as "unemployment cases". Such cases received about $110 million in CSSA payments in that year, representing about 3.2% of the total CSSA payments made.

Based on past trends and taking into account the various improvements to CSSA rates including adjustments for inflation with effect from 1 April 1995, the amount of CSSA payments for "unemployment cases" estimated to be needed for the cunent financial year is about $150 million (about 3.7% of the estimated total payment).

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

50

Power of the Securities and Futures Commission ♦ * * * *

'•l"J ’’ ' ‘ ' ..

Following is a question by the Hon Chim Pui-chung and a written reply by the Secretary for Financial Services, Mr Michael Cartland, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question:

Regarding the authority of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), will the Government inform this Council whether, apart from its power to impose penalties stipulated in the relevant legislation, the SFC has the power also to penalise the persons concerned under its own regulations; if so, whether those regulations are legally binding?

Answer:

The statutory functions of the SFC include, among other things, the enforcement of the law relating to securities and futures trading; the safeguarding of the interests of investors, and the suppression of illegal, dishonourable and improper practices in securities and futures dealings. For discharging these statutory functions effectively and transparently, the SFC has promulgated non- statutory codes and guidelines which lay down standards of practice and behaviour for securities and futures transactions in Hong Kong. Some of the codes and guidelines provide for sanctions such as private reprimand and public censure. The codes and guidelines do not have the force of law and in that sense are not legally binding. They are instruments which the SFC uses to discharge its statutory functions, and have been promulgated after consultations with the market.

End/Wednesday, June 21, 1995

51

Activities of religious groups in HK

*****

Following is a question by the Hon Zachary Wong Wai-yin and a written reply by the acting Secretary for Home Affairs, Mr Joseph Wong, in the Legislative Council today (Wednesday):

Question :

Regarding the activities of religious groups in the territory, will the Government inform this Council:

(a) of the number of various religious groups in the territory of which the Government is aware, together with a breakdown of their names and countries of origin;

(b) of the criteria adopted by the authorities concerned in deciding whether to allow a particular religious group to operate in the territory;

(c) whether it is aware of individual religious groups (one of which is from Japan) which do not allow elderly followers who are sick to consult the doctor, and instead ask them to offer all their money before curing their illnesses by "performing supernatural acts"; and

(d) how the authorities concerned will handle the problem mentioned in (c)

above?

Reply:

(a) As provided for under the Societies Ordinance (Cap. 151), any society organised and established in Hong Kong or having its headquarters or chief place of business in Hong Kong is required to send a written notification to the Societies Officer setting out the name and object of the society and other related information on establishment. According to the Societies Officer, 310 societies engaged in religious activities have notified him of their establishment. They can be categorised by religion into ten groups. The names of these societies and their respective religious categories are given at the annex. There is no requirement under the Societies Ordinance for information on the country of origin of the society concerned.

52

It should be noted that a religious group can register as a company under the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 32). If it does so, there is no need for it to inform the Societies Officer of its establishment. We do not classify companies by their activities. It is therefore not possible to provide a list of companies engaged in religious activities.

(b) All religious groups can operate freely in Hong Kong unless their operation is prejudicial to the security of Hong Kong and public safety and order. No special criteria are applied to societies or companies engaged in religious activities.

(c) The Government is not aware of any religious groups as described in part (c) of the question operating in Hong Kong.

. • * •

(d) On receipt of information concerning religious activities that may endanger public order or individual safety, the Police will conduct thorough investigations to see if any offences have been committed.

End/Wednesday, June 21,1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Thursday, June 22,1995

Contents Page No,

Transcript of the Governor's meet-the-media session....................... 1

Briefing-out Review Panel set to start work............................... 1

Consumer Price Indices for May 1995 ...................................... 3

More measures to promote employment...................................... 10

Proposed rules to guard against misuse of voters' data................... 11

*

Water quality at Chek Lap Kok site....................................... 12

Grading of beach water quality........................................... 13

Consultative paper on calling number display............................. 17

1993 survey result of building, construction and real estate sectors. 18

Movie star joins in the fight against drugs.............................. 21

Seminars on functions of parent-teacher association...................... 22

Closure of Sham Shui Po illegal structure sought......................... 23

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations.....................

23

1

Transcript of the Governor's meet-the-media session

*****

The following is a transcript of the meet-the-media session by the Governor, the Rt. Hon. Christopher Patten, after attending the St. John Ambulance Association Centre for HK and St John Council for HK AGM today (Thursday).

Governor: You all come to ask me about the work of St John who do such a wonderful job for Hong Kong.

Question: Mr Governor, the Democratic Party has announced that they will move a motion of no confidence on you. What do you think of that?

Governor: I'm not losing any sleep about it, nor I think is anybody else in Hong Kong. I think it’s gesture politics, empty gesture politics and merely tells us that the Democratic Party's election campaign is starting rather earlier this year. But there is one issue that I am concerned about and that is to ensure that our legislation on the Court of Final Appeal gets through and is supported by majority of the Legislative Council. We’ll be working very hard at that so that the people of Hong Kong can enjoy the rule of law up to and beyond 1997 without any interruption.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

Briefing-out Review Panel set to start work

*****

The Attorney General, Mr Jeremy Mathews, today (Thursday) announced the composition of the Working Party, under the chairmanship of the Director of Prosecutions, which will conduct a comprehensive review of the arrangements for the briefing out of cases to barristers and solicitors in private practice.

The review, announced by the Attorney General last month, is one of the measures adopted to improve on briefing out procedures. Most of these procedures, such as the setting up of a selection panel of two Deputy Crown Prosecutors to select private counsel and negotiate fees for non-standard briefing out, have already been put in place.

The Working Party responsible for the review will submit a report to the Attorney General by the end of this year.

2

Membership of the Working Party is as follows:

Chairman: Mr Peter Nguyen, QC, Director of Public Prosecutions

Members: (alternate) Mr Peter Graham, representative of HK Bar

Association

(alternate) Mr Lawrence Lok, QC, representative of HK Bar Association

(alternate) Mr Nick Hunsworth, representative of Law Society ofHK

(alternate) Mr Geoffrey Booth, representative of Law Society ofHK

Mr Robert Footman, Head, Efficiency Unit

Mr Jerry Richardson, Group Head, Corruption Prevention Department, ICAC

Mrs Lucia Li, Assistant Director (Accounting Services)

Mr Alan Lai, Deputy Secretary for the Treasury

Mr Samuel Leung Shiu-kee, Deputy Crown Prosecutor

Mr Chan Shu-ying, Deputy Crown Solicitor (Litigation)

Mr Peter Cheung Hok-kwong, Chambers Manager, Attorney General's Chambers

Mr Simon Chan King-shing, Treasury Accountant, Attorney General's Chambers

Secretary: Mr Galvin Ure

The Hong Kong Bar Association and the Law Society of Hong Kong have alternate representatives so that contributions from both civil and criminal specialists may be made.

... ♦ -n i .1 h'.'i/

3

The terms of reference of the Working Party are as follows:

"To consider the arrangements for the briefing out of both civil and criminal cases to solicitors and barristers in private practice by the Attorney General’s Chambers, and to make such recommendations for briefing out on a cost effective and accountable basis as may be thought necessary, and in particular to consider and make recommendations on -

(a) the criteria and procedures for selection of solicitors and counsel for inclusion in a list of approved practitioners;

(b) the criteria and procedures for selection of practitioners for individual cases;

(c) the terms of appointment of practitioners;

(d) the direction and monitoring of work assigned;

(e) record-keeping and internal budgetary control arrangements; and

(f) the certification and payment of fees,

and to report to the Attorney General by 31 December 1995."

0"» .i * • '

. . : -J

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995 , • • > . • • • ‘

jc.O

Consumer Price Indices for May 1995 ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

. . . . ... : .H 1

The year-on-year rate of increase in the Consumer Prjce Index (A) moderated to 9.1% in May 1995, from 9.6% in April. This is shown in the latest Consumer Price Indices released today (Thursday) by the Census and Statistics Department.

Moderated increases were also recorded for the CPI(B) and the Hang Seng CPI. In May, both indices rose by 9.5% over a year earlier, as compared to the increases of 9.9% and 9.8% in April.

The Composite CPI, which is compiled based on the combined expenditure pattern of all households, thus had a less rapid increase of 9.3% in May, against 9.8% in April.

4

Commenting on this moderation, a Government spokesman said slower increases in the prices of food, particularly vegetables, was the main contributory factor.

Also relevant was the decelerated increase in the prices of clothing and footwear.

The other components generally recorded stable to slightly more moderate price increases.

As for transport, the relatively faster price increase was largely due to fare revision by the three railways in May.

Comparing May 1995 with May 1994, relatively faster price increases than the overall average increase were recorded for housing (12.4% in the CPI(A), 13.8% in the CPI(B) and 13.1% in the Composite CPI); miscellaneous services (11.4%, 10.5% and 10.3%); fuel and light (9.9%, 10.1% and 9.7%); and clothing and footwear (9.4%, 9.9% and 9.2%).

•- •. •*'■1 r J •. ~l. -• •• ’!>• । , ■

On the other hand, relatively slower price increases than the overall average increase were recorded for durable goods (4.3% in the CPI(A), 4.2% in the CPI(B) and 4.3% in the Composite CPI); alcoholic drinks and tobacco (6.5%, 5.8% and 6.2%); meals bought away from home (7.0%, 6.8% and 7.2%); transport (7.3%, 7.5% and 7.4%); food (excluding meals bought away from home) (8.1%, 8.0% and 8.1%); and miscellaneous goods (8.3%, 7.2% and 7.5%).

Comparing May 1995 with April 1995, the CPI(A) and CPI(B) increased by 0.4% and 0.5% respectively. The corresponding increase for the Composite CPI was 0.6%.

Taking the first five months together, the increases in the CPI(A) and CPI(B) averaged at 9.4% and 9.9% respectively over a year earlier. The corresponding increase for the Composite CPI was 9.7%.

For the three months ended May 1995, the CPI(A) and CPI(B) were, on average, higher by 9.4% and 9.8% respectively over a year earlier. The corresponding increase for the Composite CPI was 9.6%.

For the 12 months ended May 1995, the CPI(A) and CPI(B) were, on average, higher by 8.9% and 9.4% respectively than in the preceding 12-month period. The corresponding increase for the Composite CPI was 9.4%.

5

Seasonally adjusted series are also available for the CPIs. The deseasonalised CPI(A) and CPI(B) increased at an average rate of 0.8% and 0.7% per month during the three months ended May 1995. The corresponding increase for the Composite CPI was 0.8%.

Further details are shown in Tables 1-2 and Charts 1-4.

The Consumer Price Index Reporl

More details are given in the "Consumer Price Index Report" for May 1995, which is available at $23 per copy from the Government Publications Centre, Queensway Government Offices, Low Block, ground floor. 66 Queensway, Hong Kong; or from the Publications Section of the Census and Statistics Department, 19th floor, Wanchai Tower, 12 Harbour Road, Wan Chai. Hong Kong.

For local and overseas mailings, contact should be made with the Information Services Department, 28th floor. Siu On Centre. 188 Lockhart Road. Wan Chai. Hong Kong.

For enquiries about the indices, please telephone the Consumer Price Index Section of the Census and Statistics Department on tel 2805 6403.

Details regarding the Hang Seng CPI are contained in the Hang Seng CPI Report issued by the Economic Research Department of Hang Seng Bank Ltd.

6

Table 1 Consumer Price Indices and Rates of Inc rease for Mav 1995

(Oct CPI(A) . 89 - Sep. 90 = CPI(B) 100) Hang Seng CPI Composite CPI

Carpenent Index for May 95 % change over May 94 Index for May 95 % change over May 94 Index for May 95 % change over May 94 Index for May 95 % change over May 94

Food 149.3 +7.5 151.4 +7.3 154.3 +8.1 151.1 +7.5

Meals bought away fran heme 161.6 +7.0 160.9 +6.8 162.5 +8.1 161.5 +7.2

Focd, excluding meals bought away frem hone 137.1 +8.1 138.3 +8.0 140.2 +8.0 138.0 , +8.1

Housing 182.7 +12.4 187.0 +13.8 192.3 +12.8 187.3 +13.1

Fuel and light 134.8 +9.9 134.4 +10.1 133.0 +8.5 134.3 +9.7

Alcoholic drinks and tobacco 198.5 +6.5 187.5 +5.8 182.4 +5.7 192.3 +6.2

Clothing and footwear 153.2 +9.4 156.2 +9.9 172.4 +8.2 161.0 +9.2 •

Durable goods 117.3 +4.3 117.1 +4.2 123.2 +4.4 119.0 +4.3

Miscellaneous goods 141.4 +8.3 136.8 +7.2 135.3 +6.9 138.1 +7.5

Transport 159.4 • +7.3 158.2 +7.5 156.2 +7.4 158.1 +7.4

Miscellaneous services 172.8 +11.4 166.2 +10.5 154.3 +8.9 164.7 +10.3

All items 158.1 +9.1 159.9 +9.5 164.2 +9.5 160.4 +9.3

Monthly consumer price indices are carpi led on the basis of (a) expenditure patterns of relevant households and (b) prices collected currently in the month. The expenditure patterns underlying ti;e 1989/90-based consumer price indices are based on those patterns derived fran the 1989/90 Household Expenditure Survey. The CPI (A) is based on the expenditure pattern of abait 50% of households in Hong Kong, which had an average monthly expenditure of $2,50O-$9,999 in 1989/90(broadly equivalent to $3,600-$14,600 at 1994 prices). The CPI(B) is based on the expenditure pattern of the next 30% of households, which had an average monthly expenditure of $10,000-$17,499 in 1989/90(broadly equivalent to $14,6OO-$26,OOO at 1994 prices). The Hang Seng CPI is based on the expenditure pattern of the next 10% of households, which had an average monthly expenditure of $17,500-$37,499 in 1989/90(broadly equivalent to $26,000-$56,000 at 1994 prices).

Whereas the CPI (A), CPI(B) and Hang Seng CPI are based on the expenditure patterns of groups of households with different magnitudes of household expenditure, the Carposite CPI is carpiled based on the expenditure pattern of all these households taken together. Thus, while the CPI (A), CPI(B) and Hang Seng CPI show the impact of consumer price changes on different groups of households, the Carposite CPI shows the impact of consumer price changes on the household sector generally.

7

Table 2 • > -Consumer Price Indices tor Mav 1992 - May 1995

(Oct. 89 - Sep. 90 = 100)

Yea r/month CPI(A) 'CPI(B) Hang Seng CPI Composite CPI

1992 May 124.0 123.8 124.2 124.0

June 125.3 125.1 125.2 125.2

July 125.5 /\ 125.4 125.4 125.4

August 125.6 125.9 125.8 125.8

September 128.3 127.9 127.5 128.0

October 128.4 128.4 128.6 128.5

November 128.5 129.0 129.9 129.0

December 129.3 129.8 130.0 129.7

1993 January 131.8 131.6 131.5 131.7

February 132.4 132.2 132.0 132.2

March 132.0 132.2 133.1 132.4 /

April 133.5 133.9 134.5 133.9

May 134.5 134.8 136.3 135.1

June 136.0 135.9 137.1 136.3

July 135.8 136.1 136.9 136.2

August 136.3 136.6 137.4 136.7

September 138.4 138.3 _■ ; 2 ni. J39.2 138.6

October 140.0 139.6 140.7 140.0

November 139.4 139.9 142.2 140.3

December • 140.4 140.9 143.3 141.3 > ii

1994 January 140.0 140.7 143.4 141.1

February 142.7 142.9 144.9 143.3

March 142.5 143.0 145.3 143.4

April 143.8 144.8 147.9 145.2

May - _ 145.0 146.1 150.0 146.7

June 146.2 146.9 151.0 147.7

Julv 147.3 14-7.9 150.5 148.3

August 149.6 149.6 151.7 150.1

September 150.3 150.8 153.4 ■151.3

October 151.1 152.2 155.3 152.6

November 151.4 153.1 157.3 153.5

December 153.0 154.3 158.1 154.8

1995 January 154.1 155.3 158.2 155.6

February 155.4 156.6 159.0 156.7

March 156.1 ‘ 157.4 159.7 157.5

April 157.6 159.2 162.3 159.4

May 158.1 159.9 164.2 160.4

8

Chart 1 Year-on-year Rates of Increase in CPI(A)

Chart 2 Year-on-year Rates of Increase in CPI(B)

9

Chart 3 Year-on-year Rates of Increase in Hang Seng CPI

Chart 4 Year-on-year Rates of Increase in Composite CPI.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

10

More measures to promote employment ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Labour Department is taking more proactive measures to promote employment and to combat illegal employment in the territory.

This was disclosed by the Commissioner for Labour, Mr Stephen Ip, at a forum on job matching held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre this (Thursday) afternoon.

More than 230 personnel managers from companies of various trades took part in the forum which is a major event organised by the Labour Relations Division to promote employment through personnel managers’ clubs.

The Commissioner for Labour told the managers that his department was playing a more proactive role in helping the unemployed to find jobs.

"We have launched since April a job matching programme (JMP) in five of our nine Local Employment Service offices to provide active placement service to unemployed local workers aged 30 or above," he said.

"This pilot scheme has proved to be a success as about 30 per cent of the 784 registrants have been placed. With the support of the Legislative Council in the creation of 23 additional posts in my department, the scheme could be expanded to all nine employment offices throughout the territory in the next few months."

He added that registrants of the JMP who failed to seek alternative employment would be recommended to take part in tailor-made retraining courses being organised by the Employees Retraining Board to improve their chances of finding jobs.

In a bid to solicit more job vacancies for JMP participants, the Labour Department has also set up an employment promotion team to canvass vacancies from employers and to promote the JMP among employers and job-seekers.

"This promotion team has organised various promotional activities to sell the job matching programme. They have made remarkable achievements in increasing the number of vacancies received by the employment offices," Mr Ip said.

To help workers affected by retrenchments, a special task force has also been set up to reach out to retrenched employees and offer them on-the-spot employment assistance.

- IT-

ii’ . -v' *

The Commissioner said at the forum that the Labour Department was stepping up enforcement action against illegal employment by launching vigorous inspections and special campaigns.

"Our labour inspectors have recently joined hands with their counterparts in the Immigration Department in an operation in which 34 persons were arrested for allegedly taking up illegal employment.

"We will also step up enforcement actions against abuses of the labour importation schemes by making more inspections to places of employment and accommodations of imported workers to check whether there are any breaches of contract and the employment law," he added.

The managers taking part in today's forum pledged to offer some 1,700 job 1 vacancies for job-seekers wanting free employment services from the Labour Department.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

. C ■ ' . .41;’ f •

Proposed rules to guard against misuse of voters’ data ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Boundary and Election Commission (BEC) proposes to tighten up its provisions to safeguard against misuse of information on the voter register by restricting the request for and the use of such data exclusively for the purpose related to a particular election.

Under the new provisions, the Registration Officer (RO) is required to specify the particular election in respect of which the copy or extract of the provisional or the final register may be used, when such a copy or extract is required.

i ’ . . > I'

The provisions also makes it an offence, punishable with a fine of $5,000 and imprisonment up to six months, for a person to use or permit another person to use any information in that copy or extract of the register for a purpose other than the particular election specified by the RO.

Amendments are contained in the Boundary and Election Commission (Registration of Electors) (Geographical Constituencies) (Amendment) Regulation 1995 and the Boundary and Election Commission (Registration of Electors) (Functional Constituencies and Election Committee Constituencies) (Amendment) Regulation 1995.

12

A BEC spokesman said, pending the amendments, the two Regulations stipulated that the RO may at any time make available a copy or an extract from the provisional or final register to a person for any purpose related to an election.

The person is liable to a fine and imprisonment if he uses such information for a purpose irrelevant to an election.

4

The proposed amendments, to be gazetted and tabled in the Legislative Council tomorrow (Friday), were introduced after taking into account public views and comments on the electoral arrangement for the last Municipal Council ordinary elections on March 5.

End/ Thursday, June 22, 1995

Water quality at Chek Lap Kok site ♦ ♦ ♦ * ♦

The airport site at Chek Lap Kok is provided with chlorinated raw water for construction activities, which is also suitable for drinking and domestic use, a spokesman for the Water Supplies Department said today (Thursday).

Water is delivered from Cheung Sha to the airport site through a supply system which is also connected to some other construction sites at Tung Chung as well as some nearby villages.

"The quality of water at the source and along the supply network is continuously monitored and confirmed to be in full compliance with Water Supplies Department (WSD) standards," the spokesman said.

He said WSD received a complaint of unsatisfactory water quality at the airport site in late May. Two samples were taken from the site on May 29 for testing. The result of one of the samples was not satisfactory as indicated by the presence of E Coli and coliform organisms.

"We believe that the unsatisfactory water quality was due to a connection of the internal supply system to a contaminated water tank by one of the airport site contractors," he said.

13

"The Provisional Airport Authority (PAA) was immediately notified and the fault was expeditiously rectified. Further sampling and inspection were conducted on June 1 and the results of all samples were satisfactory."

A meeting was held between WSD and PAA on June 21 to sort out the problem. Close monitoring of the water quality at the airport site on a regular basis will be made to ensure its full compliance with stipulated standards.

The supply of fully treated water to Chek Lap Kok would start sometime next year following the completion of a permanent system, the spokesman added.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

Grading of beach water quality ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The Environmental Protection Department (EPD) today (Thursday) announced grades on the bacteriological water quality of all bathing beaches in Hong Kong.

The purpose of the grading system is to inform swimmers and the general public about the state of bacteriological pollution at various beaches.

The grading will be announced bi-weekly during the bathing season to coincide with the frequency at which beach waters are usually sampled.

The grading is based on the most recent data obtained by EPD in its routine monitoring programme.

It gives an estimate on the risk of contracting some minor skin or gastrointestinal illnesses resulted from swimming at a beach with some degree of pollution.

I he estimate is based on a large scale epidemiological study carried out in Hong Kong in the past bathing seasons.

The grading of some beaches fluctuates during the summer. In most cases, this represents a natural fluctuation in the bacteriological quality of bathing waters as rain and tides bring more or less pollution to the beaches.

14

Beaches with highly developed hinterlands are likely to be more polluted than the grades suggested during and after heavy rain.

Principal Environmental Protection Officer Dr Malcolm Broom said: ’’Bathers should avoid swimming at such beaches for two to three days after a storm, or even longer if the weather remains overcast, shorter if there is strong sunshine.”

However, the bi-weekly grades give a general picture of the most recent water quality at bathing beaches at the time of reporting and form the best available forecast for the immediate future.

The system for grading beach water quality is as follows :

Grade "1” indicates that the water quality is good. The E. coli count is no more than 24 per 100 millilitres at each beach so graded, and the expected risk of minor illness to swimmers is undetectable.

Grade ”2” indicates that the water quality is fair. The E. coli count is no more than 180 per 100 millilitres at each beach so graded, and the expected health risk is no more than 10 cases of minor illness per 1,000 swimmers.

Grade ”3” indicates that the water quality is poor. The E. coli count is no more than 610 per 100 millilitres at each beach so graded, and the expected health risk is no more than 15 cases of minor illness per 1,000 swimmers.

Grade ”4" indicates that the water quality is very poor. The E. coli count is more than 610 per 100 millilitres at each beach so graded, and the expected health risk is more than 15 cases of minor illness per 1,000 swimmers.

The decision whether or not to close a beach to swimmers is based on a judgment of what degree of pollution is acceptable.

Normally, the closure of a beach would only be considered by the Urban or Regional Council if a grade ”4” occurred repeatedly, so that the average health risk over the bathing season exceeded 15 cases per 1,000 swimmers.

At present four gazetted beaches, namely Anglers', Castle Peak, Old Cafeteria, and Rocky Bay, are closed to swimmers. The decision to close the beaches has been made by the Regional and Urban Councils on the basis of beach water quality monitoring data for 1994. The public arc advised not to swim at these beaches. They are identified by an "X" in the following list.

15

The grades of the bacteriological water quality of various beaches in Hong

Kong today are listed below:

Previous Present

Beach Grading Grading

(as at 8.6.95) (as at 22.6.95)

Hong Kong South

Big Wave Bay 2 2

Chung Hom Kok 1 1

Deep Water Bay 1 1

Hairpin 2 2

Middle Bay 1 2

Repulse Bay 1 1

ShekO 2 2

South Bay 1 1

St. Stephen's 1 1

Turtle Cove 1 1

Stanley Main 2 3

Rocky Bay X X

To Tei Wan* 1 1

Tuen Mun District

Golden Beach 2 2

Old Cafeteria X X

New Cafeteria 2 2

Castle Peak X X

Kadoorie 2 2

Butterfly 2 3

Sai Kung District

Campers 1 1

Clear Water Bay 1st Beach 2 2

Clear Water Bay 2nd Beach 2 2

Hap Mun Bay 2 2

Kiu Tsui 1 1

Pak Sha Chau 1 1

Silverstrand 2 2

Trio (Hebe Haven) 1 2

16

Islands District

Cheung Sha Upper 1 1

Cheung Sha Lower 3 3

Discovery Bay* 2 2

Hung Shing Yeh 1 1

Kwun Yam Wan 2 2

Tong Fuk 1 1

Lo So Shing 1

Pui O 2 2

Silvermine Bay 2 2

Tung Wan, Cheung Chau 2 2

Tung O* 1 1

Tsucn Wan District

Anglers' X X

Approach 3 4

Casam 3 3

Gemini 3 3

Hoi Mei Wan 3 3

Lido 3 3

Ting Kau 4 4

Tung Wan, Ma Wan 2 2

Note: "X" The beach has been closed for swimming purposes.

* Non-gazetted beaches.

The following beaches have changed grading on this occasion:

Middle Bay and Trio (Hebe Haven) from "1" to "2", Stanley Main and Butterfly from "2" to "3", and Approach from "3” to "4".

The changes are within the normal range of fluctuation of the bacteriological water quality of these beaches.

Note to Editors:

For further enquiries, please contact Principal Environmental Protection Officer Dr Malcolm Broom, on tel 2835 1234.

End/Thursday. June 22, 1995

17

Consultative paper on calling number display ♦ ♦ * * *

The Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA) will issue tomorrow (Friday) a consultative paper entitled "Calling Number Display".

The paper explains what Calling Number Display (CND) is and invites public views on the questions of whether CND services should be introduced in Hong Kong and what privacy safeguards should be offered to consumers in using CND services.

"CND is a service which automatically identifies the telephone number of the line from where the call is being made to the receiver. The number is displayed before the telephone is answered," a spokesman for OFTA explained.

"A basic CND service has at its core a privacy dilemma: the service simultaneously takes privacy away from the caller and enhances privacy to the receiver.

"Most telephone users are likely to find the service useful for call screening but some may have difficulties under certain situations.

"In particular, CND service may make it harder to make anonymous calls where the caller does not want to reveal his or her identify or where the caller does not want to reveal the identity of the line from which they are calling, for example, in certain help-lines."

CND service is a telecommunications service but its impact goes beyond telecommunications. This consultative paper attempts to set the provision of such a service in its wider context and will also focus on issues related to data protection and personal privacy apart from telecommunications issues.

OFTA will consider the feedback from the public and the industry before mapping out new regulatory policy to address the privacy needs of the called and the calling parties.

Copies of the consultative paper may be obtained at any of the 18 District Offices or the Office of the Telecommunications Authority or by dialling into the bulletin board service of OFTA (telephone: 2834 0119).

18

All views and comments on the consultative paper should be submitted in writing in Chinese or English to OFTA before August 31, 1995 at the following address:

Office of the Telecommunications Authority

29/F, Wu Chung House

213 Queen's Road East

Wan Chai

Hong Kong

Attn: Senior Administrative Officer (Regulatory)

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

1993 survey result of building, construction and real estate sectors *****

The gross output performed by construction establishments during 1993 amounted to $151.6 billion, representing an increase of 22.9% over 1992. This comprised a gross value of $148.4 billion for the construction work performed and an income of $3.1 billion from other sources.

Net of total operating expenditure, the gross operating surplus amounted to 6.5% of the gross output in 1993. This was 0.5 of a percentage point higher than the corresponding figure of 6.0% for 1992.

These are some of the major findings of the 1993 Survey of Building, Construction and Real Estate Sectors, released today (Thursday) by the Census and Statistics Department. The survey was conducted from April 1994 to early 1995.

All value figures in this press release are expressed in current price terms. The percentage changes derived from these figures have not been adjusted for price increases. Caution should therefore be taken in interpreting the survey results.

In terms of percentage of gross output, the operating expenditure incurred by construction establishments amounted to 9.3.5% in 1993. This comprised 22.0% for compensation of employees and payments to labour-only sub-contractors; 21.5% for consumption of materials, supplies, and maintenance services; 42.3% for payments for fee sub-contract work; and 7.7% for other miscellaneous operating expenses.

19

Compared with 1992, the percentage for compensation of employees and payments to labour-only sub-contractors decreased by 2.3 percentage points; and that for consumption of materials, supplies, and maintenance services by 1.7 percentage points.

The percentage for payments for fee sub-contract work rose by 2.6 percentage points; and that for other miscellaneous operating expenses by 0.9 of a percentage point.

The value added of these establishments, which is a measure of the construction industry's contribution to Hong Kong's Gross Domestic Product, amounted to $43.2 billion in 1993. This represented an increase of 15.7% over 1992.

The value added content of the gross output performed by these establishments amounted to 28.5%, comprising 22.0% for compensation of employees and payments to labour-only sub-contractors and 6.5% for gross operating surplus. Compared with 1992, the former proportion decreased by 2.3 percentage points and the latter increased by 0.5 of a percentage point.

The survey results also showed that 17,100 construction establishments operated in 1993.

Some 39.3% of the construction establishments were engaged in decoration, repair and maintenance of erected buildings and structures. They accounted for $18.4 billion or 12.1% of the gross output.

On the other hand, the general trade contractors operating at construction sites, though totalling about 5.4% of the establishments, accounted for $92.6 billion or 61.1 % of the gross output.

The rest of the construction establishments consisted mostly of special trade contractors, such as contractors specialising in electrical and mechanical fittings. These contractors constituted 55.3% of the establishments in this industrial sector, and accounted for 26.8% of the gross output.

The survey did not cover labour-only sub-contractors who mainly supplied labour to work on a job-to-job basis. However, the gross value of construction work performed by these sub-contractors had already been included in that performed by those contractors commissioning their services.

Apart from construction establishments, the survey also enumerated establishments engaged in (i) real estate development, leasing, brokerage and maintenance management services, and (ii) architectural, surveying and project engineering services.

20

The gross output performed by establishments engaged in real estate development, leasing, brokerage and maintenance management services amounted to $90.7 billion in 1993, representing an increase of 23.1% over 1992. This comprised $37.9 billion for service and rental income, $51.1 billion for the gross margin of real estate development projects (excluding land price appreciation) and $1.6 billion for other incomes.

The gross operating surplus amounted to 79.7% of the gross output in 1993. This was 0.4 of a percentage point higher than the figure of 79.3% for 1992.

The total operating expenditure of these establishments accounted for 20.3% of the gross output. Compared with 1992, this decreased by 0.4 of a percentage point.

The total value added of these establishments was $79.1 billion in 1993, representing an increase of 24.2% over 1992. It constituted 87.2% of the gross output performed. This was 0.8 of a percentage point higher than the figure of 86.4% for 1992.

These figures did not include establishments which developed real estate projects for their own use, nor did they include those which owned land without developing it during the reference year. Also excluded were real estate leasing and other related activities undertaken by individuals or firms which do not employ any persons.

A total of 7.900 establishments operated in the real estate development, leasing, brokerage and maintenance management services sector in 1993.

As regards establishments engaged in architectural, surveying and project engineering services, the gross output performed was $7.4 billion, representing an increase of 25.3% over 1992. This consisted of $7.1 billion for service income and $0.3 billion for other incomes.

The gross operating surplus amounted to 12.9% of the gross output in 1993, representing a decrease of 0.5 of a percentage point under the figure of 13.4% for 1992.

The total operating expenditure of these establishments accounted for 87.1% of the gross output. This was 0.5 of a percentage point higher than the figure of 86.6% for 1992.

21

The total value added of these establishments was $4.6 billion in 1993, representing an increase of 25.8% over 1992. It constituted 61.7% of the gross output performed. Compared with 1992, this increased by 0.3 of a percentage point.

Some 1,110 establishments operated in the architectural, surveying and project engineering services sector in 1993.

For real estate development projects, the value accrued to private sector projects during 1993 was $77.8 billion, representing an increase of 15.8% over the corresponding value in 1992. The increase was largely due to increased work done in residential buildings and multi-purpose commercial premises.

The total project outlays amounted to $32.4 billion which included, for instance, payments to contractors and interest payments.

More detailed results will be given in a full survey report to be published around August 1995.

Enquiries regarding these survey results may be directed to the Building. Construction and Real Estate Statistics Section of the Census and Statistics Department on tel 2839 3204.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

Movie star joins in the fight against drugs *****

Movie star Jackie Chan has shown his committment to the fight against drug abuse by recording a song to disseminate the message of "Say No to Drugs".

Entitled "Enjoy a good life", the theme song urges youngsters to make full use of their lives and stay away from drugs.

A spokesman for the Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) said the song would be an effective publicity tool in promoting the anti-drug message among young people.

"Mr Jackie Chan has provided a role model for youngsters to look up to. His participation in the anti-drug campaign will help us to drive home the message that drugs are dangerous and should only be taken under medical supervision," he said.

22

Mr Chan is among those who have responded to the call for a joint community effort in the fight against drug abuse by the Governor at the Summit Meeting in March.

The theme song will be officially launched at the opening ceremony of the International Anti-drug Day Exhibition organised by ACAN this Saturday (June 24).

The large-scale exhibition is held annually to mark the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking declared by the United Nations General Assembly.

End/Thursday, June 22. 1995

Seminars on functions of parent-teacher association

*****

The Committee on Home-School Co-operation and the Special School Parent-Teacher Association Network on Saturday (June 24) will hold the opening of a seminar on "Functions of Parent-Teacher Association (P I A) and PTA Networking".

About 300 PTA executives will attend the opening of the seminar to discuss topics on "Community Building and Problem Solving" and "P I A Networking".

At the seminar, lecturer of Trinity College of Dublin University. Dr James Moran, and senior lecturer of Hong Kong Institute of Education. Mr Pang I-wah, will give talks on "Community Building and Problem Solving" and "PTA Networking", respectively.

Following the opening, seminars aimed at disseminating the importance of PTA in the future development of Hong Kong Education and exploring the possibility of setting up a territory-wide PI A network will be held on four consecutive Saturdays starting from June 24.

Attention News Editors:

Your representatives are invited to cover the opening of the seminar at 9 am and a media briefing session to be chaired by the Chairman of the Committee on Home-School Co-operation. Mr Tik Chi-yuen. after the seminar at 4 pm on Saturday at Harcourt Room. Hotel Conrad. Pacific Place. 88 Queensway.

End/Thursday. June 22. 1995

- 23 -

Closure of Sham Shui Po illegal structure sought *****

The Building Authority is seeking to close an unauthorised structure in Sham Shui Po so that it can be demolished without endangering the occupants and the public.

The single-storey unauthorised structure used for dwelling is located on the roof of a building in 299-301 Tai Nan Street.

A notice of applying for a Closure Order from the District Court under the Buildings Ordinance on October 19 has been posted on the premises today (Thursday).

Demolition work is expected to start as soon as the Closure Order is issued.

End/Thursday, June 22, 1995

1 long Kong Monetary Authority money market operations

*****

S.million fimc (hours) Cumulative change ('■.million)

Opening balance in the account 2,305 0930 4 197

Closing balance in the account 1,959 1000 -t 197

Change attributable to : 1 100 4-197

Money market activity 1186 1200 4 197

LAP today -532 1500 4-197

1600 4 186

LAI' rate 4.25% bid/6.25% oiler TW1 I IS.3 *-().!* 22.6.95

24

Hong Kong Monetary Authority

EF bills EF notes

Terms Yield Term Issue Coupon Price Yield

1 week 5.33 2 years 2705 6.40 101.20 5.80

1 month 5.44 3 years 3804 6.90 102.25 6.11

3 months 5.47 5 years 5006 6.60 99.81 6.76

6 months 5.50 5 years M501 7.90 103.26 7.23

12 months 5.58

Total turnover of EF bills and notes - $9,478 million

Closed June 22, 1995

End/Thursday. June 22, 1995

DAILY INFORMATION BULLETIN

ISSUED BY GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SERVICES BEACONSFIELD HOUSE, HONG KONG. TEL: 2842 8777

Friday, June 23,1995

Contents Page .No,

Governor's statement on John Major’s candidacy for the leadership of the

Conservative Party....................................................... 1

Governor's statement on the Foreign Secretary's retirement............... 1

Proposals for dealing with traffic congestion............................ 2

Corporate rescue procedure proposed...................................... 4

$50M research and development scheme launched............................ 6

Wage limit for severance and long service payments raised................ 7

Bill to safeguard press freedom gazetted................................. 7

Emergency regulations to be repealed..................................... 9

Legal services consultation period extended............................. 10

Employment and vacancies survey...................................... 11

Mobile exhibitions on LegCo elections................................... 12

/Shark vigil...

Contents

Page No.

Shark vigil remains in force............................................. 14

Road Traffic (Safety Equipment) Regulations.......................... 15

Last turn-over at HMS Tamar.......................................... 16

Planning Department to survey on shopping habits......................... 17

Three Gurkha soldiers commissioned................................... 18

Financial aid for livestock farmers...................................... 19

Pre-qualification invited for North Point Government Offices............. 20

Capping and management of mud pit at Sha Chau............................ 21

Pok Oi Hospital directors visit SWD...................................... 21

Firing practice in June.................................................. 22

Hong Kong Monetary Authority money market operations..................... 22

1

Governor’s statement on John Major's candidacy for the leadership of the Conservative Party ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

The following is the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten's statement on the Rt Hon John Major's candidacy for the leadership of the Conservative Party today (Friday):

"John Major has made a brave, serious and sensible decision. It is intolerable that the good government of Britain should be held to ransom by abject party squabbles. I will of course have no vote in any contest should there (unwisely) be one. But speaking personally, I am sure that any Conservative MP intelligently concerned about the future of the country and the Conservative Party will give John Major the unequivocal support that he deserves for his record, his integrity, and his commitment to a decent and successful future for Britain." ' ■

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

Governors statement on the Foreign Secretary's retirement ♦ * * * ♦

The following is the statement of the Governor, the Rt Hon Christopher Patten, on the Rt Hon Douglas Hurd’s announcement of his retirement as Foreign Secretary today (Friday):

"Douglas Hurd has been an outstanding Foreign Secretary an4 a great supporter of Hong Kong. He has been one of my closest and best friends in politics and I shall obviously miss him. However, the Government’s policy on Hong Kong - our commitment to standing up for the Joint Declaration and all that it means for the Territory - will continue, whoever replaces him.

I send Douglas and Judy my best wishes."

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

2

Proposals for dealing with traffic congestion *****

The Secretary for Transport, Mr Haider Barma, today (Friday) announced proposals for dealing with traffic congestion.

• • » • I . .4

He pointed out that in putting together the package, the Government had taken into account comments received during the three-month public consultation exercise on the Report of the Working Group on Measures to Address Traffic Congestion.

"Some of the proposals made by the Working Group had been revised and a number of new initiatives emerging from the public consultation exercise have been included in the package," he added.

. -• 7 -J* •

On fiscal measures, Mr Barma said if the numbers of new car registrations again exceeded the rate that our roads can accommodate, he proposed considering:

increasing First Registration Tax (FRT) for private cars by a rate sufficient to reduce the rate of growth in private car numbers to about two or three per cent per annum;

* raising Annual Licence Fees (ALF) for private cars in line with inflation since last increase in 1991 (i.e. an overall increase of about 40 per cent).

Mr Barma explained that the increase in FRT for private cars was considered to be the most effective way of tackling congestion in the short term.

"However, the rate of growth in the number of private car has recently slowed down to a significant extent after an average annual increase rate of 10 per cent in the past three years.

"The rate of increase over the first five months of 1995 was five per cent and indeed the rate of increase for the last two months was negligible. But this cannot be taken as indicative of a long term trend.

”In view of this, increases on FRT cannot be justified on transport grounds for the time being, but we need to make the preparations now to be ready to propose an increase by the appropriate amount if the rate of car growth rises significantly beyond our target of two or three per cent a year," he said.

3

Mr Barma proposed to implement the following:

raising cross harbour tunnel tolls for private cars and taxis to $30 between 7 am and 9 pm by increasing passage tax, (except on Sundays and Public Holidays), but retaining the $10 toll overnight;

discontinuing deductions for company cars for profits tax purposes.

Mr Barma said all the proposed fiscal measures could not be implemented until the necessary legislative amendments were completed, hopefully in the first half of the 1995/96 Legislative Council session.

"If tax increases are introduced then some of the extra revenue will be allocated to a Transport Fund for use in improving transport services," he added.

Apart from the use of fiscal measures as an interim means to address traffic congestion, the Government will improve traffic management including giving greater priority to buses in the use of road space.

The Government is seeking funds to engage consultants to study the possibility of providing bus-only lanes throughout the territory.

With regard to longer term solutions of the problem, Mr Barma said the Government would study the introduction of Electronic Road Pricing (ERP), which had been widely supported by the public.

"Funds have been earmarked for a feasibility and technical study on ERP, and it is hoped that this will begin in early 1996.

"The Government will introduce ERP pilot schemes before considering implementing a full ERP system."

In addition, the proposed package includes the following ongoing measures:

constructions of new railways (i.e. planning for the implementation of the Railway Development Strategy);

commitment to building more roads ($30 billion to be spent in the next five years);

improvements in the management of road openings; and

* stricter enforcement of traffic legislation and to consider higher fixed penalties.

tcj .. ,o.- p

4

Mr Barma said the Government had also received a number of proposals emerging from the public consultation exercise and would consider implementing them. These new initiatives are:

* provision of car parks at railway stations to facilitate “park and ride”;

publicising the benefits of car pooling;

* more pedestrianised areas; and

more "no stopping" restrictions in the busiest areas during peak hours.

Mr Barma emphasised that the package of proposals was aimed at restoring the balance between private car growth and traffic flow.

He noted that the proposals would be put to the Transport Advisory Committee for consideration. Thereafter, the Executive Council would be consulted.

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

Corporate rescue procedure proposed ♦ * ♦ ♦ *

l

The Insolvency Sub-committee of the Law Reform Commission today (Friday) published a consultation paper containing proposals for the introduction of a comprehensive corporate rescue procedure in Hong Kong.

The Chairman of the Sub-committee on Insolvency, Professor Edward Tyler, said the need for such a procedure was widely accepted in the business community. Corporate rescue procedures, like the Administration procedure in the United Kingdom and Chapter 11 in the United States, are in place in many other jurisdictions.

The proposed rescue procedure, known as provisional supervision, would provide most companies in financial difficulties with court protection and time to put a proposal for a voluntary arrangement to creditors.

This would be achieved by the court providing the protection of a stay on all proceedings against the company, including winding up proceedings, while a proposal for a voluntary arrangement was being prepared. Court protection could last for up to six months, after which creditors could vote to extend the stay without court protection if a voluntary arrangement had not been finalised or the company had not gone into liquidation following a recommendation of the provisional supervisor.

•t.- ,

5

A proposal for a voluntary arrangement would be put together by a solicitor or accountant, known as a provisional supervisor, who would usually be appointed by the company. The provisional supervisor would have to ascertain a company’s trading position as soon as possible and put a proposal to creditors, if appropriate, in as short a time as possible. The initial stay period would be one month, after which the court could extend the stay for a further five months.

During the provisional supervision period, the provisional supervisor would control the company in place of the directors, but he could delegate powers of management back to directors where appropriate.

A company’s main secured creditors would have the power to elect whether to participate in provisional supervision. If these major secured creditors elected not to participate, preferring perhaps to liquidate the company or appoint a receiver over its assets, it would probably cause provisional supervision to end. It is anticipated that, in most cases, major secured creditors would have agreed to participate prior to a company going into provisional supervision.

Ultimately, the creditors would vote on any proposal. It would require a majority in number and in excess of two thirds in value of creditors for a proposal to be accepted. This requirement should protect the different interests of smaller creditors, who would comprise the majority in number, and major creditors, who would have the greatest value of debt.

Once a proposal was accepted, a supervisor, probably the provisional supervisor, would oversee the implementation of the voluntary arrangement.

It is also proposed that directors and senior management of a company could be held personally liable to compensate a liquidated company for losses incurred by a company if it traded while insolvent.

fhe consultation period will end on August 31. Written submissions can be sent to the Law Reform Commission Secretariat before that date.

Copies of the consultation paper arc available on request from the Law Reform Commission Secretariat, 20th Floor, Harcourt House, 39 Gloucester Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong.

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

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$50M research and development scheme launched * * * ♦ ♦

The Industry Department today (Friday) announced the launching of a $50 million Co-operative Applied Research and Development Scheme (CARDS) aimed at encouraging manufacturers to leverage on the vast pool of research expertise in the tertiary institutions and research bodies in Hong Kong and China.

Speaking at a press conference, the Director-General of Industry, Miss Denise Yue, explained that the objective of the new funding scheme was to enhance the technological capability and competitiveness of the local manufacturing industry by increasing the number of applied research and product development projects that utilise the technological expertise of Hong Kong and China.

"It is hoped that this in turn will enhance technological collaboration between Hong Kong and China," she said.

"Companies incorporated under the Companies Ordinance of Hong Kong are eligible to apply and projects must involve a researcher of a local tertiary institution and a researcher of a tertiary or research institution in China.

"Projects should be market-driven and of a developmental nature. Deliverables of the project should be a new product or a new process which has good market potentials either in Hong Kong or elsewhere.” she added.

She further said under CARDS, funding support up to 75 per cent of the fundable cost items of an approved project may be provided in the form of an interestbearing loan or equity participation.

The Scheme will be administered by the Applied Research Council, formerly the Hong Kong Applied R&D Fund Company Limited, which also operates the Applied R&D Scheme.

The funding ceiling of the Applied R&D Scheme has also been similarly extended.

"The funding is intended to cover major cost items such as R&D manpower, equipment, consumables and marketing expenses,” she added.

Application forms for the two schemes can be obtained from the Applied Research Council Secretariat at Room 1445, 14th floor. Ocean Centre. 5 Canton Road, Kowloon.

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

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Wage limit for severance and long service payments raised

*****

The wage limit for calculating severance payment (SP) and long service payment (LSP) under the Employment Ordinance has been increased from $15,000 to $22,500 per month.

The revised wage limit was gazetted today (Friday) and will take immediate effect. The adjustment was proposed in a resolution which was passed by the Legislative Council on June 21 (Wednesday).

"With this revision, SP and LSP are payable to monthly rated eligible employees at the rate of two-thirds of the last full month’s wages or two-thirds of $22,500, whichever is the less, for each reckonable year of service," a spokesman for the Labour Department said.

I

"For daily-rated or piece-rated employees, the calculation of SP and LSP will be 18 days' wages or two-thirds of $22,500, whichever is the less, for each reckonable year of service," he said.

The total amount payable should not exceed a statutory maximum, which is currently $210,000.

The wage limit for calculating the two payments was last revised in 1990.

End/Friday, June 23, 1995

Bill to safeguard press freedom gazetted *****

The Govemor-in-Council has endorsed a Bill which provides additional safeguards to protect journalistic material from being searched for and seized arbitrarily by law enforcement agencies, the Government announced today (Friday).

The Interpretation and General Clauses (Amendment) Bill 1995 was gazetted

today.

A Government spokesman said the Bill addressed criticisms that the powers of search and seizure of the police were too wide and that such powers, if abused in relation to journalistic material, might threaten press freedom.

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Under section 50(7) of the Police Force Ordinance, a magistrate may issue a warrant to a police officer if the magistrate is satisfied there is reasonable cause to suspect that there is in any place any document which is likely to be of value to the investigation of any offence.

The spokesman pointed out that the Governor, in his 1994 Policy Address, undertook to take action to amend certain provisions which imposed legal restrictions on press freedom by the end of this legislative session, and that section 50(7) of the Police Force Ordinance was one of these provisions.

He said that, in addition to the Police Force Ordinance, there were 108 other pieces of legislation which contained similar provisions.

"Rather than simply amend the Police Force Ordinance, as we had been asked, we decided to amend the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance, so as to deal with all of the legislation at the same time," the spokesman said.

He said the Bill proposed amendments to restrict the statutory powers to enter premises for the purpose of searching for, or seizing, journalistic material.

"This general restriction applies not only to the police, but also to other law enforcement agencies and government departments," he said.

The Bill will specify that an officer has to apply for a warrant before he can be authorised to enter premises to search for or seize journalistic material.

Such an application has to be approved personally by a directorate disciplined officer specified in the Bill before it can be made to a District Court or High Court judge.

The spokesman said the judge would have to be satisfied that a number of conditions were met before a warrant could be issued.

The conditions include: an arrestable offence has been committed; the journalistic material to be searched for is likely to be of substantial value to the investigation or relevant in the proceedings for the offence; other methods of obtaining the material may compromise the investigation; and it is in the public interest that a warrant should be granted.

He stressed that the amendments would not impair the ability of the law enforcement agencies to conduct criminal investigations, although a higher burden of proof would be required in the warrant application procedure.

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