LegCo Panel on Public Service
Terms and Conditions of Service for New Recruits


Members have asked to be briefed on any changes, apart from the cessation of Overseas Education Allowance, on terms and conditions of service for new recruits, which would be implemented or are being contemplated in the run-up to the change of sovereignty on 1 July 1997.

Common Terms

2. Members were briefed on the consultative exercise on the Civil Service Terms of Appointment and Conditions of Service (Common Terms) on 16 June 1994. To recap, the terms and conditions of service which have been drawn up to apply to new recruits are contained in the Consultative Document on Civil Service Terms of Appointment and Conditions of Service which was issued in October 1993. Staff and relevant advisory bodies were extensively consulted after the issue of the document. A summary of the new terms and conditions as set out in the consultation document is at Annex. Apart from these, there are no other new terms and conditions which are being contemplated at this stage.

3. There is as yet no firm date to implement the Common Terms package which has been passed to the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group. Serving officers on permanent and pensionable terms will not be affected unless they opt to change to the new Common Terms.


4. For enquiries, please contact Mrs Philomena Leung, Principal Assistant Secretary for the Civil Service at 2810 3100.

Civil Service Branch
October 1996

Common Terms Proposals


1. New terms of appointment

(a) New permanent and pensionable (P&P) terms

    recruits should normally be appointed on new P&P terms.
    recruits should be local candidates and proficient in Chinese language.
    a ‘local’ should be defined as a permanent resident under the Immigration Ordinance for the time being. As and when the latter is amended in alignment with the Basic Law, the definition of a ‘local’ will be changed accordingly.
    for grades requiring Form V education or above, the norm of Chinese language proficiency requirement would be set at a pass in a Chinese subject in the HKCEE but with an alternative of a pass in a basic Chinese language proficiency test (for those who did not have formal education in Chinese up to Form V).
    existing requirements for English language proficiency should remain unchanged.
    for jobs which require greater proficiency in English or Chinese, the Head of Department may stipulate the standard in consultation with Civil Service Branch. For grades which have recruitment difficulties, the Head of Department may in consultation with Civil Service Branch lower the language requirements.

(b) New agreement terms

    to be offered when new P & P terms fail to attract suitable candidates or where there is a need for expertise for a specific period.
    recruits need not be ‘locals’ but preference will be given to ‘locals’.
    proficiency in Chinese language would only be required on a job-related basis.

2. New conditions of service

(a) Leave

    to standardize and express all leave earning rates as working days within a year.
    to set leave accumulation at two years’ entitlement.
    proposed leave earning rates and accumulation limits:

Leave earning rates

Accumulation limits

Mod 1



MPS 1-13



MPS 14-D10



* figures in brackets are the rates/limits for those with 10 or

more years of service

(b) Passage

    a leave travel allowance would be provided to Directorate officers at rates to be determined from time to time, based on the return air fares between Hong Kong and London as specified in the contract between the Government and the Airlines.
    the allowance would be fully accountable and may be used in the same way as the current leave passage allowance.
    proposed scale of provision:

D7 - D10

First class, annually

D4 - D6

Economy class, annually

D1 - D3

Economy class, every two years

    passage and baggage allowance would be provided to officers recruited directly from overseas on taking up appointment and on completion or termination of employment.

(c) Housing

    officers appointed on new P & P terms would be eligible for Home Financing Scheme if they are on or above MPS 34. Those below may apply for the discretionary benefit of Home Purchase Scheme.
    officers appointed on new agreement terms may apply for a rent allowance or the Home Financing Scheme if they are on or above MPS 34. Those below may apply for the discretionary benefit of Home Purchase Scheme.
    payment of housing allowances would be limited to a maximum of 10 years for all new recruits.

(d) Education assistance and school passage

    no overseas education allowance (OEA) and school passage for new recruits. Local education allowance will be retained.

Last Updated on 21 August 1998