Revised version

OP 96/97-2(1)

(Issued at 11:00 am on 7.10.96)

The Legislative Council
Order Paper
Wednesday 9 October 1996 at 2:30 pm



I. Papers

Subsidiary Legislation

L.N. NO.

1. Official Languages (Alteration of Text under Section 4D) Order 1996

404/96

2. Antiquities and Monuments (Declaration of Archaeological Site) Notice 1996

405/96

3. Antiquities and Monuments (Declaration of Historical Building) (No.3) Notice 1996

406/96

4. Food Business (Regional Council) (Amendment) Bylaw 1996

407/96

5. Immigration Service (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (53 of 1996) (Commencement) Notice 1996

408/96

6. Immigration Service (Designated Places) Order

409/96

7. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Public Revenue Protection Ordinance) Order

(C) 90/96

8. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Pesticides Ordinance) Order

(C) 91/96

9. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Sand Ordinance) Order

(C) 92/96

10. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Pharmacopoeia Ordinance) Order

(C) 93/96

11. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (General Loan and Stock Ordinance) Order

(C) 94/96

12. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Control of Chemicals Ordinance) Order

(C) 95/96

13. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Civil Liability (Contribution) Ordinance) Order

(C) 96/96

14. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Professional Accountants Ordinance) Order

(C) 97/96

15. Official Languages (Authentic Chinese Text) (Banking Ordinance) Order

(C) 98/96

Sessional Papers 1996-97

1. No. 1 - Report by the Trustee of the Correctional Services Children's Education Trust for the period 1st September 1994 to 31st August 1995

(to be presented by the Secretary for Security)

2. No. 2 - Sewage Services Trading Fund Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 March 1996

(to be presented by the Secretary for Works)

3. No. 3 - The Government Minute in response to the Report No.26 of the Public Accounts Committee dated June 1996

(to be presented by the Chief Secretary who will address the Council)

4. No. 4 - Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health Annual Report 1995-96

(to be presented by the Secretary for Health and Welfare)

5. No. 5 - Report by the Commissioner of Police on Police Welfare Fund for the period 1 April 1994 - 31 March 1995

(to be presented by the Secretary for Security)

6. No. 6 - Clothing Industry Training Authority Annual Report 1995

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

7. No. 7 - Construction Industry Training Authority 1995 Annual Report

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

8. No. 8 - Revisions of the 1995/96 Estimates approved by the Urban Council during the Fourth Quarter of the 1995/96 Financial Year

(to be presented by the Secretary for Broadcasting, Culture and Sport)

9. No. 9 - Revisions to the Approved Estimate of Expenditure on Capital Projects approved by the Urban Council as at end of June 1996

(to be presented by the Secretary for Broadcasting, Culture and Sport)

10. No. 10 - The Government Minute in response to The Eighth Annual Report of The Commissioner for Administrative Complaints Hong Kong dated June 1996

(to be presented by the Chief Secretary who will address the Council)

II. Questions

1. Mr Howard YOUNG to ask :

Will the Government inform this Council of the measures it has taken to rationalise the passenger processing facilities at immigration counters at Kai Tak Airport and to ensure that such facilities at the new Chek Lap Kok Airport are adequate for coping with the anticipated increase in passenger flow?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

2. Mr HO Chun-yan to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease in various districts in the territory and the incidence of such disease in each district;
  2. whether it has any plan to set up Alzheimer's disease assessment centres in public hospitals in the various districts;
  3. whether it has any plan to provide financial assistance to voluntary agencies for the provision of hostels and day care centres which cater especially for patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease; and
  4. how the Government will implement the recommendation of the Report of the Working Group on Care for the Elderly concerning the payment of an allowance to voluntary workers and health care personnel looking after patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

3. Mrs Elizabeth WONG to ask :

Will the Government inform this Council whether the Instructor (Catering) Grade in the Correctional Services Department is a disciplined services grade?

Public Officers to reply : Secretary for Security

Secretary for the Civil Service

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

Since taking over the management of public hospitals, the Hospital Authority has implemented a series of hospital domestic services reforms, which have given rise to discontent among its domestic services supporting staff. In view of this, is the Government apprised of:

  1. the total number of Workman I, Workman II and temporary workmen employed in public hospitals; and whether temporary workmen are employed because of the high wastage rate in the Workman I and Workman II ranks;
  2. the total number of ward attendants in public hospitals and how many of them are actually working in the wards;
  3. the number of public hospital wards not serviced by ward attendants and the grade of staff responsible for the cleaning and sundry services in these wards; and whether the reason for these wards not being serviced by ward attendants is due to the high wastage rate of the Ward Attendant grade;
  4. the number of public hospital wards serviced by both ward attendants and health care assistants, as well as the details of the scope of duties of these two grades; and
  5. the number of qualified ward attendants who have not been promoted to the health care assistant grade and the reasons thereof; and the number of ward attendants who are due for retirement in the next six months?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

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

In August this year, the Town Planning Board (TPB) approved a plan of property development on top of the Central Station of the Airport Railway which includes a high-rise building of 400 metres in height with 83 to 85 storeys. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. whether the TPB has consulted the public widely (including consultation with the District Board) before granting approval to the above development plan;
  2. whether the granting of approval to the above development plan contravenes specific standards governing the height of buildings along the waterfront in Central District; if so, what the reasons are for granting the approval; and
  3. whether, before approving the plan, the TPB has considered the effect of the above-mentioned building on the overall view of Hong Kong Island and the harbour upon its completion?

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

6. Miss Emily LAU to ask :

During his visit to Hong Kong in March this year, the UK Prime Minister assured the non-Chinese ethnic minorities that if they came under pressure to leave Hong Kong after 1997, they would be allowed to enter the United Kingdom. The ethnic minorities do not regard the Prime Minister's assurance as sufficient and have reiterated their demand for full British citizenship. Will the Administration inform this Council whether the Governor will use his persuasive power to urge the British Parliament to accede to the request of the non-Chinese ethnic minorities?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

* 7. Mr HO Chun-yan to ask : (Translation)

Is the Government aware:

  1. of the average number of patients seeking treatment per day and the daily quota of medical consultations in the specialist out-patient services provided by Tuen Mun Hospital in each of the past three years;
  2. of the average waiting time for getting specialist out-patient services appointments in Tuen Mun Hospital in the past three years, and how it differs from that laid down in the performance pledge of the Hospital; and
  3. what short-term and long-term measures the Hospital Authority has to improve the specialist out-patient services provided by Tuen Mun Hospital in view of the increasing demand for specialist out-patient services in Tuen Mun?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

* 8. Mr Fred LI to ask : (Translation)

In a recent rape case involving a victim who is a mentally handicapped person, it was reported that the Legal Department considered that the victim was incapable of giving testimony in court and dropped charges against the defendant to safeguard the victim's best interests. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. whether the prosecution had considered using the video-link system to conduct the hearing;
  2. whether it had assessed the victim's mental and psychological conditions before the trial; if not, why not; and how it was determined that the victim was incapable of giving testimony in court;
  3. of the criteria adopted for determining what the victim's best interests were;
  4. whether, in deciding to drop charges against the defendant, consideration had been given to the chances of a successful prosecution; and
  5. whether, in the light of the problems which have been brought to light in this case, the authority concerned will review the existing legislation with a view to determining whether there is a need to introduce remedial measures; if so, what the specific details of the review are and when the review will be completed; if not, why not?

Public Officer to reply : Attorney General

* 9. Mr SIN Chung-kai to ask : (Translation)

The Lands Department has recently granted a piece of vacant land for use as a public car park on short term tenancy (STT), despite opposition from the Kwai Ching District Board. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of sites that were granted for use as public car parks on STT, together with the total number of parking spaces provided, in the various districts in the past five years; and the number of sites that are expected to be granted for use as public car parks on such basis, as well as the number of parking spaces provided, in the coming two years;
  2. whether environmental impact assessments had been conducted before the granting of the sites in (a) above for use as public car parks on STT basis;
  3. whether the Lands Department is required to consult the district boards before granting such STTs; and
  4. of the number of such STTs granted by the Lands Department despite opposition from the district boards since 1 April 1995, and the reasons for their opposition; and the justification for the Lands Department granting the STTs in the face of such opposition?

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

*10. Mr Bruce LIU to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the total number of cases in which two or more Owners' Corporations exist in the same private building concurrently;
  2. whether the situation mentioned above contravenes any provisions of the law; if so, why such a situation has occurred and whether the Government will consider amending the existing legislation so as to prevent such a situation occurring; if not, what measures does the Government have to resolve disputes arising from such a situation; and
  3. which Government departments are involved in the process of forming Owners' Corporations in private buildings, and what their respective roles are?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Home Affairs

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

Under the Electricity (Registration) Regulations, applicants for registration as electrical workers of various grades of electrical work must have relevant practical experience. At present, applicants have to rely on their employers to certify in writing that they have the relevant working experience. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the total number of persons registered for Grade A electrical work under regulation 4(2) in Part III of the Electricity (Registration) Regulations in the past five years;
  2. of the ways by which employees can prove their relevant working experience, apart from requesting their employers to issue certifying documents;
  3. whether employers can refuse to issue certifying documents to employees regarding their working experience; and
  4. how the authorities verify the accuracy of the certifying documents regarding working experience?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Economic Services

*12. Dr Samuel WONG to ask :

In view of the rapid and large increase in population in Tseung Kwan O, there is an urgent need to extend the Mass Transit Railway line to that area. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council whether:

  1. the Mass Transit Railway Corporation has made any plan to start constructing the Tseung Kwan O Extension soon; and
  2. the above project will be discussed by the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Transport

*13 Mr MOK Ying-fan to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of public rental flats built since the implementation of the Home Ownership Scheme (HOS) as well as the number of flats which were originally designed for rental purposes but later converted into HOS flats;
  2. whether the decision of the Housing Department (HD) to convert certain public rental flats into HOS flats is subject to the endorsement by the Housing Authority (HA) or the relevant committee of the HA; if not, why not; and
  3. given the pledge made in the Policy Commitment of last year's Policy Address to reduce the average waiting time for allocation of public rental housing to under five years by 2001, what measures are in place to ensure that the waiting time will not be extended as a result of the conversion of public rental flats into HOS flats?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Housing

*14. Mr Howard YOUNG to ask :

Will the Government inform this Council of the progress in developing the computerised system for issuing the future Hong Kong Special Administrative Region passports, and whether a decision will be made for the system to start receiving data input, so that applications can be processed before 1 July 1997?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Security

*15. Mr Fred LI to ask : (Translation)

A Government inter-departmental steering group is reviewing the old age and disability allowances under the Social Security Allowance Scheme. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:

  1. why the review is conducted by a Government internal steering group alone;
  2. of the purposes of the review, and whether they include reducing the expenditure on the Social Security Allowance Scheme; and
  3. whether the Government will consult the public on the findings of the review; if so, how the consultation will be conducted; if not, why not?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

*16. Dr LAW Cheung-kwok to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council of:

  1. the names of the advisory boards and committees which are concerned with economic and monetary affairs;
  2. the respective percentages of expatriates and academics of local universities with Hong Kong permanent resident status, out of the total membership of these advisory boards and committees; and
  3. the criteria adopted for appointing university academics to serve on such bodies?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Financial Services

*17. Miss Emily LAU to ask :

In view of the recent spate of industrial accidents, will the Administration inform this Council:

  1. of the number of persons killed or injured in industrial accidents in the past 24 months, with a breakdown by the categories of such accidents;
  2. whether there is a policy to debar contractors on the Lists of Approved Contractors for Public Works which have poor industrial safety records from tendering for Government projects; if so, how the policy is implemented and the number of contractors which have been so debarred in the past 24 months; if not, whether the Government will actively consider formulating such a policy; and
  3. of the names of contractors currently engaged in the Airport Core Programme (ACP) and non-ACP projects which have a record of violating industrial safety laws?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Education and Manpower

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

The United States Government has recently imposed new measures on imported textiles products, including the unilateral imposition of additional import document requirements on five types (totalling ten categories) of clothing products manufactured in Hong Kong and the payment of higher entry bonds by US importers of these products. In this connection, will the Administration inform this Council:

  1. in comparison with the corresponding figures in the same period last year, what impact the above measures have had on the local garment industry (particularly on the total value of exports, number of workers employed, average working hours and average wages of workers in respect of the ten categories of clothing products) in the period from June to September this year;
  2. the latest progress of the consultations between the Administration and the United States Government, and the counter-measures which have been taken and will be taken by the Administration in this regard; and
  3. the measures adopted by the relevant departments in enforcing the regulations concerning the country of origin of goods?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Trade and Industry

*19. Dr LAW Cheung-kwok to ask : (Translation)

Will the Government inform this Council:

  1. of the number of successful new applications for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) each month since January 1995 in which the main reason for applying was unemployment of family members;
  2. of the number of families in the above cases which subsequently ceased to receive CSSA payment upon the unemployed family members finding employment; and
  3. of the number of applications for CSSA made on the grounds of unemployment of family members which were rejected during the same period, and the reasons for rejection?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for Health and Welfare

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

Will the Government inform this Council of the respective duties collected from various alcoholic beverages, including beers, intoxicating liquors, grape wines and Chinese-type liquors etc, under the Dutiable Commodities Ordinance in each of the financial years from 1993-94 to 1995-96?

Public Officer to reply : Secretary for the Treasury

* For written reply.

III. Administration's Motions

1. Criminal Procedure Ordinance

Attorney General:

That the Criminal Appeal (Amendment) Rules 1996, made by the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee on 10 July 1996, be approved.

2. Hong Kong Academy of Medicine Ordinance

Secretary for Health and Welfare:

That the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine (Amendment) Regulation 1996, made by the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine on 13 June 1996, be approved.

IV. Administration's Bills

First Reading

1. Arbitration (Amendment) Bill 1996

2. The Hong Kong Institute of Education (Amendment) Bill 1996

Second Reading

Debates to be adjourned

1. Arbitration (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Attorney General

2. The Hong Kong Institute of Education (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Secretary for Education and Manpower

Debate to be resumed

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

:

Secretary for Security

Committee Stage and Third Reading

Immigration (Amendment) (No.2) Bill 1996

:

Secretary for Security


V. Members' Motions

1. Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance

Mr Ronald ARCULLI :

That in relation to the -

(a) Mental Health (Amendment) Regulation 1996 published as Legal Notice No.298 of 1996 and

(b) Prison (Amendment) Rules 1996 published as Legal Notice No.300 of 1996,

and laid on the table of the Legislative Council on 10 July 1996, the period referred to in section 34(3) of the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance for amending subsidiary legislation be extended under section 34(4) of that Ordinance until 16 October 1996.

2. Review and prospects of the manpower resources training system in Hong Kong

Miss CHAN Yuen-han : (Translation)

In view of the unemployment of a large number of workers brought about by Hong Kong's economic restructuring and of the difficulty faced by workers, especially those from the manufacturing industry, in finding jobs or switching to another occupation, this Council urges the Government to:

  1. thoroughly review Hong Kong's long-term overall manpower resources training policy and to lay down its principles and approach in this regard, with a view to enhancing the competitiveness of the afore-mentioned workers in the job market;
  2. set up a statutory Employment Committee, consisting of employees, employers, government officials and professionals, for co-ordinating the work of the relevant government departments in implementing the recommendations of the above review; and
  3. review the work of the Employees Retraining Board to ensure that its services are focused on the provision of skills to facilitate change of occupation, and provide the Board with sufficient and steady funds.

Public Officer to attend : Secretary for Education and Manpower

3. Disparity of wealth in Hong Kong

Mr K K FUNG : (Translation)

That, in view of the increasing serious polarization between the rich and the poor in the territory's economic development process, resulting in a lot of people (especially the impoverished elderly, new immigrants and the recipients of public assistance) still having to live from hand to mouth in long-standing dire straits in an affluent society such as Hong Kong, this Council expresses deep regret that Government has been turning a blind eye to these people's plight and, in this 'the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty', urges the Government to take prompt action to help the poor in the territory to 'get rid of poverty', conduct a comprehensive study on the causes and the extent of the financial disparity between the rich and the poor in the territory; and formulate corresponding social and economic policies with a view to alleviating the problem.

Amendment to K K FUNG's motion

Mr LEE Cheuk-yan : (Translation)

To insert the following after " 'get rid of poverty'," and before "conduct a comprehensive study":

"including :

  1. introducing the Old Age Pension Scheme and increasing the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance payment for the elderly to $2,700;
  2. improving the vetting method of student financial assistance schemes so that more impoverished families can obtain reasonable subsidy;
  3. introducing a contributory Unemployment Assistance Scheme;
  4. taking active and effective measures to tackle the problem of unemployment, such as allocating funds to subvented organizations to assist them in setting up employment mutual aid groups;
  5. providing career training and counselling for new immigrants, as well as day-time education opportunities for young immigrants aged between 16 and 18;
  6. increasing the rates of Disability Allowance and Disability Supplement, as well as actively promoting the employment opportunities for the disabled; and
  7. restricting the rental increase of public housing to a level below that of inflation and offering assistance to households in hardship, as well as expediting public housing production and significantly increasing the number of public housing units produced;"

Public Officers to attend : Secretary for Financial Services

Secretary for Health and Welfare

VI. Members' Bills

First Reading

1. University of Hong Kong (Amendment) Bill 1996

2. Public Order (Amendment) Bill 1996

3. The Orthodox Metropolitanate of Hong Kong and South East Asia Bill

Second Reading

Debates to be adjourned

1. University of Hong Kong (Amendment) Bill 1996

:

Dr David LI

2. Public Order (Amendment) Bill 1996

Public Officer to attend

:

:

Mr James TO

Secretary for Security

3. The Orthodox Metropolitanate of Hong Kong and South East Asia Bill

:

Mr Eric LI


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