Revised version
OP 96/97-11(1)
(Issued at 11:00 am on 2.12.96)

The Legislative Council
Order Paper
Wednesday 4 December 1996 at 2:30 pm



I. Papers

Subsidiary Legislation

L.N. NO

1. Waste Disposal (Permits and Licences) (Forms and Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

492/96

2. Waste Disposal (Chemical Waste) (General) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

493/96

3. Water Pollution Control (General) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

494/96

4. Noise Control (General) (Amendment) (No.2) Regulation 1996

496/96

5. Noise Control (Air Compressors) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

497/96

6. Noise Control (Hand Held Percussive Breakers) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

498/96

7. Air Pollution Control (Specified Processes) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

499/96

8. Road Traffic Ordinance (Amendment of Schedule 10) Order 1996

500/96

9. Ozone Layer Protection (Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1996

501/96

10. Dumping at Sea (Fees) Regulation

502/96

11. Tax Reserve Certificates (Rate of Interest) (No.4) Notice 1996

503/96

12. Hawker (Permitted Place) (No.4) Declaration 1996

504/96

13. Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles (Amendment) Ordinance 1995 (73 of 1995) (Commencement) Notice 1996

505/96

14. Post-Release Supervision of Prisoners Ordinance (Cap.475) (Commencement) Notice 1996

506/96

15. Import and Export (General) Regulations (Amendment of Fourth Schedule) Order 1996 (L.N.422 of 1996) (Commencement) Notice 1996

507/96

16. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Dangerous Goods Ordinance) Order

(C) 123/96

17. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Reserved Commodities Ordinance) Order

(C) 124/96

Sessional Paper 1996-97

No. 38 - Vocational Training Council Annual Report 1995/96

(to be presented by the Secretary for Education and Manpower)

II. Questions

1. Mr MOK Ying-fan to ask : (Translation)

With the ageing of the territory's population, the number of patients suffering from Senile Dementia disease is expected to grow. The Consultant Psychiatrist of the Psychogeriatric Team of the Castle Peak Hospital has estimated that about 10% of the elderly in the territory are suffering from the disease. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the expected increase in the number of day care centres for the elderly in the coming five years;
  2. whether, given that the care of patients suffering from Senile Dementia disease takes more time than that for ordinary elderly people, the Government will consider increasing the staffing resources of care and attention homes and day care centres for the elderly, so that these organisations will have adequate manpower to look after elderly people suffering from the disease; and whether the Government has any plan to encourage these organisations to take in such patients more willingly;
  3. whether the Government has any plan to set up day care centres specially for patients suffering from Senile Dementia disease in various districts, in order to provide training and nursing care;
  4. how the Government will assist family members of patients suffering from Senile Dementia disease in learning how to look after such patients; and
  5. whether the Government will consider allocating resources for undertaking studies on Senile Dementia disease in the territory; and whether the Government will consider strengthening community education in order to enhance the public's awareness of the disease?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

2. Mr LAU Chin-shek to ask : (Translation)

In view of the extension of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) to Hong Kong on 14 October this year, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. whether it will introduce relevant legislation in order to comply with the spirit of Article 11.1(d) of the CEDAW regarding the right to "equal remuneration....in respect of work of equal value";
  2. given the fact that each signatory state to the CEDAW is required to submit its first report on the status of women in its country one year after signing the Convention, whether the first such report on Hong Kong will be submitted next year by the British Government, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government or the Chinese Government; and
  3. whether the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group has deliberated on the respective roles of the HKSAR Government and the Chinese Government regarding the submission of reports on the status of women in Hong Kong after the change of sovereignty?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Home Affairs

3. Mrs Elizabeth WONG to ask :

Will the Government inform this Council whether it is aware of the measures taken by the British Government to publicise the British National Overseas (BNO) passport and to persuade the Governments of other countries to accept the BNO passport as a legitimate travel document having the same status as other travel documents issued by the British Government?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

4. Miss Emily LAU to ask :

In his speech delivered at a seminar organised by the Bank of England and held in London on 10 September this year, the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) stated that the Exchange Fund does not currently hold assets in currencies which are not convertible and not traded in major foreign exchange markets. He also allayed fears that China would exert influence on the HKMA to use the Exchange Fund to buy Chinese Government or Renminbi debt in order to finance China's budget deficit. As some of the Chinese bonds are denominated in currencies of the G-7 countries, will the Government inform this Council if it has any information regarding the following:

  1. whether the HKMA is currently holding Chinese bonds; and
  2. if the answer to (a) is in the negative, in order to address the concern of the people in Hong Kong and of the international financial community whether the HKMA will state categorically that the HKMA will not hold Chinese Government or Renminbi debt?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Financial Services

5. Mr Andrew CHENG to ask : (Translation)

The Governor has stated publicly that demonstrators would be served with hot tea and mattresses so as to facilitate them to express their dissident views. However, on 15 November this year, the police deployed more than 200 officers to stand guard outside the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre. The police contained the demonstrators in a restricted "demonstration area" and used force to remove the belongings of the peaceful demonstrators. Later on, the Secretary for Security also stressed that the same tactics would be adopted to handle future demonstrations. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. why there is such a serious difference between the Governor's stance on handling demonstrators and that of the Secretary for Security;
  2. whether the remarks made by the Secretary for Security represent the Government's policy in handling peaceful demonstrations in future; and
  3. whether the Secretary for Security's remarks and the recent actions of the police are in breach of the Bill of Rights and unfair to peaceful demonstrators and petitioners?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

* 6. Mr Henry TANG to ask : (Translation)

It is learnt that a local university commissioned by the Government has recently completed a report entitled "Study on Health Protection of Workers and Members of Public against Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Radiation at Radio Sites" which has identified a number of residential blocks located in areas of high concentration of radiation in the territory. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of the above residential blocks, as well as the number of residents living in such blocks; and
  2. whether it will consider publicising the exact locations and names of such blocks; if not, what the reasons are?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Economic Services

* 7. Mr CHENG Yiu-tong to ask : (Translation)

In regard to the Job Matching Programme, will the Government inform this Council of:

  1. the total number of persons registered under the Programme during the period from the commencement of the Programme on 1 April 1995 up to the end of September this year, the number of registrants who have successfully obtained employment and the proportion of these persons to the total number of registrants;
  2. the trades in which registrants under the Programme were formerly engaged; the numbers of registrants who have been unemployed for less than three months and for a period of three to six month respectively, and their respective proportions to the total number of registrants;
  3. the types of jobs in which the majority of the successfully placed registrants were employed, and the respective proportions of those employed as office assistants, unskilled workers and watchmen to the total number of successfully placed registrants;
  4. comparative figures on the types of jobs, wages, working hours, working environment, employee benefits and employees' compensation before and after the registrants have obtained employment, as well as the number of these registrants receiving the median wage of their respective trades; and
  5. the respective proportions of registrants who have declined a job offer on account of dissatisfaction with its job nature, wage level and working hours to the total number of registrants?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

* 8. Miss CHAN Yuen-han to ask : (Translation)

The Social Welfare Department has organised a four-month Training Course for health workers in conjunction with the Hong Kong College of Nursing, Hong Kong Red Cross and St. John Ambulance Association and Brigade. Participants of the course are required to pay a course fee of $2,200. They are also required to sign an undertaking which stipulates that they have to pay an indemnity of $3,300 or part thereof to the Social Welfare Department should they fail to obtain employment as a health worker within six months after completing the course or if they work in such capacity for less than one year. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the following, since the holding of the first training course for health workers:
    1. the ratio between the number of participants completing the course and the number of such participants who are successful in obtaining employment as health workers;
    2. the reasons why some participants have failed to obtain employment;
    3. the number of participants who have failed to comply with the stipulations of the undertaking and have to pay an indemnity;
    4. the number of applications for exemption from payment of indemnity as well as the numbers of approvals for exempting full or partial payment of indemnity; and the criteria for granting such exemptions;
  2. of the overall demand and shortfall situations of health workers in government-subvented residential care homes, financially independent non-profit-making residential care homes and private residential care homes;
  3. whether the Government will consider imposing restrictions on residential care homes employing enrolled nurses to take up the duties of health workers, so as to safeguard the employment prospects of health workers registered under the Residential Care Homes (Elderly Persons) Ordinance, and to ensure that the resources being put into the training of health workers are not wasted; and
  4. whether the Government will review the effectiveness of the course; if so, when the review will be completed; and the reasons why the Government has held the sixth training course before the completion of the review?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

* 9. Mr CHAN Wing-chan to ask : (Translation)

The Transport Advisory Committee's recommendation that taxi passengers using the Western Harbour Crossing need only pay a tunnel toll of $40, instead of $60, for the taxi's return journeys has aroused opposition from the taxi unions as well as the public's concern about similar recommendation being made for the Tsing Ma Bridge. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. how the toll for taxis using the Tsing Ma Bridge will be determined; and whether different toll charging schemes will be adopted for taxis and other types of vehicles using the Tsing Ma Bridge;
  2. whether, in the event that it is specified that taxis using the Tsing Ma Bridge are required to pay a toll for the return journeys, the toll should be borne by passengers travelling to the new airport at Chek Lap Kok or by those travelling to the urban area; and
  3. whether urban and New Territories taxis can both carry passengers to and from the new airport at Chek Lap Kok; if so, whether they will be charged the same toll for using the Tsing Ma Bridge?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Transport

*10. Dr John TSE to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. whether there are shortfalls in the intake of student in various types of special schools; if so, what the reasons are, and provide a breakdown of the ratios between the number of students admitted and the number of school places in the various types of special schools; and
  2. whether it has estimated the number of students who need to attend special schools but have not enrolled in such schools?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

*11. Mr CHOY Kan-pui to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of local students who went abroad to undertake undergraduate or postgraduate courses in the past three years;
  2. of the number of persons who returned to Hong Kong after completing undergraduate or postgraduate courses abroad in each of the past three years; and
  3. whether, in the light of the figures given in the answers to (a) and (b) above, there is a problem of brain drain among those who have completed higher education abroad, or whether there is an increase in the number of such persons returning to Hong Kong; and of the impact such a situation will have on the territory?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

*12. Mr Ambrose LAU to ask : (Translation)

It is learnt that some 6,000 primary and secondary students in the territory have recently taken part in the Third Mathematics and Science Study organised by the International Association for the Study of Educational Achievement. The University of Hong Kong has examined the results of the Study and found that the development in mathematics and science in the territory has remained static, and that the territory is trailing behind other developing countries in Asia in this regard. Researchers have attributed this to insufficient emphasis being placed on education by the Government. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the proportion of the funding on education to the territory's GNP in the past ten years;
  2. whether any study has been conducted on the respective proportions of the education funding to the GNP in Singapore, South Korea, Japan and Taiwan in the same period; and
  3. whether it has formulated any long-term education strategy, particularly in teaching science and mathematics, to ensure that bright and qualified people will be trained up to promote high technology development in the industries of the territory?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

*13. Mr IP Kwok-him to ask : (Translation)

Is the Government aware of:

  1. whether the intakes of postgraduate students in various local tertiary institutions have reached the prescribed annual admission targets in the past three years;
  2. the ratio between local and non-local postgraduate students in various tertiary institutions in each of the past three years; and the regions/countries where these non-local students have come from;
  3. whether the University Grants Committee has any plan to relax the requirement that non-local students taking postgraduate courses should not exceed 20% of the total number of postgraduate students; if not, why not; and
  4. whether the requirement that non-local postgraduate students should not exceed 20% of the total number of postgraduate students is consistent with the objective of developing the territory into an Asian education centre?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

*14. Dr HUANG Chen-ya to ask : (Translation)

It is known that new antipsychotic drugs are more readily accepted by patients, and this has reduced the number of cases of patients failing to turn up for follow-up consultation and treatment. In this connection, is the Government aware of the following data for the past year:

  1. the amount of provision earmarked by the Hospital Authority (HA) for the purchase of neuroleptic drugs, and the proportion of such provision to HA's total expenditure on drugs;
  2. the average expenditure by the HA on drugs per mental patient and per non-mental patient respectively; and
  3. the respective amounts allocated by the HA for the purchase of antischizophrenic drugs and new antipsychotic drugs, and the respective proportions of these amounts to the total provision for the purchase of neuroleptic drugs?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

*15. Mr Albert CHAN to ask : (Translation)

The Government has recently provided the LegCo Panel on Housing with information regarding the clearance of Kai Cheung Temporary Housing Area (THA). According to the information, 62.7% of the residents affected have been offered rehousing in new public rental housing (PRH) flats. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the numbers and percentages of residents in the squatter areas and THAs, which are earmarked for clearance in the same period as that for the Kai Cheung THA, who have been offered rehousing in new and old PRH flats respectively;
  2. whether the overall percentage of residents referred to in (a) above being allocated new PRH flats is lower than that of Kai Cheung THA residents; if so, what the reasons are; and
  3. how the Housing Department determines whether residents of squatter areas and THAs affected by clearance will be allocated new or old PRH flats?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Housing

*16. Dr David LI to ask :

According to figures released by the Census and Statistics Department in March this year, 14.8% of people aged fifteen and over smoke daily, compared with 14.9% in 1993. The percentage of young male smokers aged 15-19 has risen sharply from 2.4% to 5.9% since 1993, whereas the percentage of young female smokers of the same age group has increased from 0.9% in 1993 to 1.3% this year. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether:

  1. it has conducted any research to find out the causes of the rising rate of young smokers;
  2. it has taken into account the rising rate of young smokers in planning anti-smoking campaigns; if not, how it plans to counter this trend in its campaign strategy; and
  3. the Health and Welfare Branch will consider launching a large scale anti-smoking campaign with emphasis being placed on educating young people about the adverse effects of smoking?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

*17. Miss Christine LOH to ask :

Regarding the renovation and improvement works undertaken in Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Queen Mary Hospital since 1992, is the Government aware of:

  1. the total financial provision earmarked for the renovation and improvement works in Queen Elizabeth Hospital (inclusive of donations from the Hong Kong Jockey Club) and the amount spent so far; and
  2. the total financial provision earmarked for the renovation and improvement works in Queen Mary Hospital and the amount spent so far?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

*18. Mr CHIM Pui-chung to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council of:

  1. the expiry dates of the agreements of the current chairman and deputy chairman of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC);
  2. the criteria adopted by the authority concerned for determining whether the agreements of the current chairman and deputy chairman of the SFC will be renewed; and
  3. whether the authority concerned has considered selecting the chairman and deputy chairman of the SFC through open recruitment?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Financial Services

*19. Mr WONG Wai-yin to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of complaints received by the Police in each of the past three years concerning police officers framing innocent persons, together with a breakdown of such cases by category relating to false accusations of "possession of dangerous drugs", "obstructing a police officer in the due execution of his duty", "robbery", "wounding" and "assaulting a police officer", as well as the number of complaints alleging police officers taking fingerprints by force to fabricate evidence for the purpose of bringing about a conviction; the number of complaints found to be substantiated in each category and the punishment imposed on the police officers concerned;
  2. in regard to those complaints which have been found to be substantiated, of the reasons why police officers have framed innocent persons; and
  3. of the mechanism in place within the Police Force to prevent the occurrence of cases of police officers framing innocent persons?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

*20. Mr LEUNG Yiu-chung to ask : (Translation)

It is learnt that section 70 of the Criminal Procedure Ordinance, under which the court could order a young offender who was under 18 when the offence was committed to be detained until Her Majesty's pleasure shall be known, was repealed in 1993. At present, there are still such prisoners being detained pending the Governor's decision on their sentences, and some of them have already been detained for 10 years or more. The Board of Review on Long Term Prison Sentences (the Board) now reviews such cases once every year, and after the prisoners concerned have reached the age of 21, the cases are reviewed once every two years, so that recommendations may be made to the Governor regarding the remission of the sentences of the prisoners concerned. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. whether the prisoners concerned and their families will be advised of the outcome of the Board's review and the reasons for the Board's recommendations; if not, what the reasons are;
  2. of the appeal channels open to the prisoners concerned if they are dissatisfied with the outcome of the Board's review;
  3. given that such prisoners are not allowed to apply for parole as their sentences have yet to be determined, whether the Government has considered if the existing arrangement of detaining such prisoners pending the Governor's decision on their sentences has deprived the rights of such prisoners, and if such prisoners may suffer greater mental stress than other prisoners; and
  4. whether there is a minimum length of sentence imposed on such prisoners and whether the Government will consider setting a deadline (e.g. within one year after the prisoner reaches the age of 21) for determining the length of sentence for such prisoners, so as to ensure that these prisoners will not have to serve sentences longer than those served by adult prisoners committing the same offences?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

* For written reply.

III. Government Motions

Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance

Secretary for Economic Services:

That the Gas Safety (Gas Supply) (Amendment) Regulation 1996, published as Legal Notice No. 455 of 1996 and laid on the table of the Legislative Council on 6 November 1996, be amended in section 2, in new regulation 23A(2), by repealing everything after " " and substituting " ".

IV. Government Bills

First Reading

1. Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions and Minor Amendments) Bill 1996

2. Occupational Safety and Health Bill

3. Crimes (Amendment) (No.2) Bill 1996

4. Carriage by Air Bill

Second Reading

Debates to be adjourned

1. Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions and Minor Amendments) Bill 1996

:

Attorney General

2. Occupational Safety and Health Bill

:

Secretary for Education and Manpower

3. Crimes (Amendment) (No.2) Bill 1996

:

Secretary for Security

4. Carriage by Air Bill

:

Secretary for Economic Services

Debates to be resumed

5. Occupational Deafness (Compensation) (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Secretary for Education and Manpower

6. New Territories Land Exchange Entitlements (Redemption) Bill

:

Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands

Committee Stage and Third Reading

1. Occupational Deafness (Compensation) (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Secretary for Education and Manpower

2. New Territories Land

Exchange Entitlements (Redemption) Bill

:

Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands

V. Members' Motions

1. Territorial development strategy review

Mr Edward HO :

That this Council regrets that the Government has under-estimated Hong Kong’s population growth, as well as its housing, transport and other physical infrastructure needs in the past; and urges the Government to formulate a long-term and balanced territorial development strategy to promote Hong Kong’s continual economic growth, and enhance and sustain a high quality of life for the people of Hong Kong.

Amendments to Mr Edward HO's motion

1. Miss Emily LAU :

To delete "formulate" and to substitute with "consider imposing a cap on population growth, so as to facilitate the formulation of".

2. Miss Christine LOH :

To add "so as" after "balanced territorial development strategy"; and to add "in an environmentally sustainable manner" after "continual economic growth".

Public Officer to attend : Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands

2. Provisional legislature

Mr Andrew CHENG : (Translation)

That this Council opposes the setting up of the provisional legislature.

Amendment to Mr Andrew CHENG's motion

Mr David CHU : (Translation)

To add ", as the negotiations between China and Britain failed to reach a consensus over the political system of Hong Kong, thereby resulting in the non-convergence of the pre- and post-1997 electoral models for the law-making body of the territory and rendering the setting up of the provisional legislature inevitable," after "That"; to delete "opposes the setting up" and substitute with "calls on the candidates for the election"; and to add "to fulfil, as the target of their participation in political affairs, the principles of 'one country, two systems; Hong Kong people ruling Hong Kong; and high degree of autonomy'" after "of the provisional legislature".

Amendment to Mr David CHU's Amendment

Mr MOK Ying-fan : (Translation)

To add "at this stage" after "the setting up of the provisional legislature".

Public Officer to attend : Secretary for Constitutional Affairs

VI. Members' Bills

First Reading

1. Protection of the Harbour Bill

2. The Methodist Church, Hong Kong, Incorporation (Amendment) Bill 1996

Second Reading

Debates to be adjourned

1. Protection of the Harbour Bill

:

Miss Christine LOH

Public Officer to attend

:

Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands

2. The Methodist Church, Hong Kong, Incorporation (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Mr LAU Chin-shek


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