For discussion
on 10 September 1997


Subhead 001 Salaries

Members are invited to recommend to Finance Committee -

  1. the creation of the following permanent posts in the Security Bureau of the Government Secretariat -

    2 Administrative Officer Staff Grade B
    (D3) ($127,900 - $135,550)

    1 Administrative Officer Staff Grade C
    (D2) ($110,000 - $116,800)

    offset by the deletion of the following post -

    1 Deputy Secretary for Security
    (D3) ($127,900 - $135,550); and

  2. the deletion of rank and grade of Deputy Secretary for Security (D3).


The Security Bureau (SB) does not have adequate staffing support at the directorate level to enable it to discharge its duties efficiently and effectively.


2. The Secretary for Security proposes to create two permanent posts of Administrative Officer Staff Grade B (AOSGB) (D3) and one permanent post of Administrative Officer Staff Grade C (AOSGC) (D2), offset by the deletion of one permanent post of Deputy Secretary for Security (D3).


Present Organisation

3.At present, the SB comprises the following four Divisions -

Division 1 is headed by a permanent post of AOSGB1(D4), designated as Deputy Secretary for Security 1 (DS(S)1). It is responsible for managing the policy, legislation and resources relating to security liaison, liaison with the People ' s Liberation Army (PLA) Garrison, maintenance of boundary integrity, international law enforcement co-operation, the surrender of fugitive offenders and mutual legal assistance in criminal matters, public order, law enforcement and fight against crime in Hong Kong. It is also responsible for bureau administration and resource management;

Division 2 is headed by a permanent post of Deputy Secretary for Security which is an SB departmental post ranked at D3 and designated as Deputy Secretary for Security 2 (DS(S)2). We have filled this post by an AOSGB(D3) since June 1995. The Division is responsible for managing the policy, legislation and resources relating to fire fighting and rescue services, correctional and rehabilitation/aftercare services, aviation security, Government security and emergency response management, and immigration control;

Narcotics Division is headed by a permanent post of AOSGB(D3), designated as Commissioner for Narcotics (C for N). It is responsible for the policy, legislation and resources in respect of all matters relating to the suppression of drug abuse, drug trafficking and drug money laundering, the policy aspects of drug preventive education and publicity, treatment and rehabilitation, and the administration of the Beat Drugs Fund; and

Vietnamese Division is headed by a supernumerary post of AOSGB(D3), designated as Refugee Co-ordinator (RC). It is responsible for the policy, legislation, and resources in respect of all matters relating to the handling of the Vietnamese Migrants (VMs), Vietnamese Refugees (VRs) and Vietnamese illegal immigrants (VIIs) in Hong Kong.

The present organisation chart of the SB is at Enclosure 1.

Substantial Increase in Workload

4.The reunification of Hong Kong with China has led to SB facing new challenges and substantial increase in workload and work complexity, particularly in Divisions 1 and 2 in relation to liaison with the PLA, international law enforcement links, nationality and right of abode (ROA) issues.

5.Division 1 - Just as we have overcome the transitional issues, new pressures have arisen with the reunification with China. The presence of the PLA in Hong Kong for the first time means that we have to establish a new working relationship, and this has to be handled sensitively and at a senior level. With the change of sovereignty, we need to double our effort in enhancing our international law enforcement links with third countries, particularly in areas such as extradition and mutual legal assistance. Indeed we also need to develop our law enforcement links with other parts of Mainland China, in line with the Basic Law (BL) provisions, such as developing new mutual legal assistance programmes, as well as new informal liaisons with Chinese security organizations.

6.Division 2 - The application of the Chinese Nationality Law in Hong Kong brings on the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government a host of new Chinese nationality-related functions. The HKSAR is unique in that an interpretation of the Chinese Nationality Law adopted by the Standing Committee of the National People ' s Congress is applicable to the HKSAR only. Thus in many areas there is no precedent for the HKSAR Government to follow. We have to devise new rules and practices in dealing with various nationality-related matters. Although we have all along devoted much effort to the promotion of the travel convenience of Hong Kong residents, the actual coming into use of the HKSAR passport has focused the world ' s attention on changes in travel document matters in Hong Kong. Questions such as the returnability of British National (Overseas) passport holders, the position of Certificate of Identity holders and the status of Document of Identity holders will remain the centre of attention of foreign immigration authorities. It requires extra effort to explain such changes to the rest of the world and to assure foreign countries of the credibility of Hong Kong travel documents. Another important issue that requires even more attention is the problem posed by large number of Mainland children claiming to have the ROA in Hong Kong. Although legislation is now in place to provide for an effective and standardised means of verifying the status of these children, we still need to maintain close liaison with the Mainland authorities to ensure the smooth operation of the scheme and to work out possible improvements to the distribution of the One Way Permit quota to enable Mainland children who have been verified to have the ROA to be able to come to Hong Kong for settlement within as short a period as possible. We also have to work on long-term arrangements to address the problem of split families between the HKSAR and the Mainland.

7.In addition to the substantial work arising from the change of sovereignty, the two Divisions of the Bureau have also to spearhead a number of new initiatives, including fire safety, aviation security and prison sentence review and rehabilitation/aftercare services. Enclosure 2 gives a detailed account of the major political and social issues facing each Division.

Need for a New Division

8.We are running down the Vietnamese Division gradually and the two supernumerary directorate posts of the Division [RC and Principal Assistant Secretary for Security (Vietnamese) (PAS(S)V)] will lapse on 30 September 1997. However, there are still a number of outstanding matters relating to VMs that need to be settled, e.g. the port of first asylum policy, the debt of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the increasing number of VIIs arriving in Hong Kong, etc. This outstanding work must be absorbed by the other three Divisions of SB if a new Division was not set up.

9.As described in Enclosure 2, the Narcotics Division is presently dealing with a number of new initiatives and should be barely capable of coping with the work in its own schedules. Therefore, we do not propose any changes to the staffing and scope of responsibilities of the Division. Divisions 1 and 2 are already bursting at the seams. Not to mention the outstanding work on the VM issues, they cannot even absorb the additional work arising from the reunification with China and the new initiatives mentioned in paragraph 7 above. We therefore need a new Division headed by an AOSGB (D3) to take on the additional work.

10.We propose to create a new Division, designated as Division 3, to be headed by a new permanent post of AOSGB (D3), designated as Deputy Secretary for Security 3 (DS(S)3). We propose to transfer the bureau administration and resource management responsibilities from Division 1 to Division 2 and all immigration related matters from Division 2 to the new Division 3 so as to relieve the heavy work schedule of Divisions 1 and 2. Division 3 will also absorb the outstanding work on VM related matters. A chart showing the proposed new directorate structure of SB is at Enclosure 3. The main duties and responsibilities of the three Deputy Secretaries are at Enclosures 4 to 6.

11.In view of the heavy workload in relation to immigration related matters, the Civil Service Bureau has deployed an AOSGC (D2) to provide temporary relief to Principal Assistant Secretary for Security (C) (PAS(S)C) of Division 2 since 29 January 1997. We consider that there is a permanent need of this additional post and propose to create a permanent post of AOSGC (D2) to be designated as Principal Assistant Secretary for Security (D) (PAS(S)D) to undertake all nationality and immigration matters affecting non-Hong Kong residents. He will assist DS(S)3 to oversee and review the visa regime, to formulate and implement an overall strategy to tackle the problem of illegal immigration in Hong Kong, and to assume responsibility for reviewing and improving the system for hearing appeals against the decision of the Director of Immigration on repatriation and deportation cases. He will also be required to handle all residual VM/VII issues and to negotiate with the Vietnamese Government with a view to speeding up the repatriation of the VIIs in Hong Kong. He will also work with the law enforcement agencies to strengthen liaison with the Mainland authorities to better co-ordinate efforts to deter, prevent and take action against illegal immigration on the respective sides of the border, and in particular, to find a solution to the VII problem. PAS(S)C will then be responsible for all nationality and immigration matters affecting Hong Kong residents, including the HKSAR passport, ROA, declaration of foreign nationality, and the ' Certificate of Entitlement ' scheme and travel convenience for Hong Kong residents. The main duties and responsibilities of PAS(S)C and PAS(S)D are at Enclosures 7 and 8 respectively. The work schedule of all the other directorate posts, except those of the Vietnamese Division which will close on 1 October 1997, will remain unchanged under the re-organised SB.

Regrading of Departmental Post

12.The post currently held by DS(S)2 is an SB departmental post with no incumbent in the rank. An ex-police officer had held the post until he retired in June 1995. Since then, we have filled the post by an AOSGB(D3) post created on a supernumerary basis. This arrangement has been working well in the past two years. We therefore propose to make permanent this arrangement by the creation of one permanent AOSGB (D3) post, offset by the deletion of one permanent post of Deputy Secretary for Security (D3). Consequently, we will delete the grade and the rank of the departmental post. This proposal is in line with common practice to avoid the proliferation of grades and ranks in the civil service.


13.The additional notional annual salary cost of this proposal at mid-point is -

$ No. of Posts
New permanent post 4,230,000 3
LessPermanent post deleted1,478,4001
Additional cost2,751,6002

14.The additional full annual average staff costs of the proposal, including salaries and staff on-cost, is $4,903,524.

15.We have not included any provision in the 1997-98 Estimates to meet the cost of this proposal, which is estimated at $1,413,000 for the remainder of the financial year. Subject to Members ' approval of the proposal, we shall offset the necessary supplementary provision by deleting an equivalent amount under Head 106 Miscellaneous Services Subhead 251 Additional commitments.

16.This proposal has no direct consequence on the non-directorate establishment of SB.


17.We first created the two directorate posts of the Vietnamese Division (i.e. RC and PAS(S)V) under delegated authority in November 1988 and June 1989 respectively to provide the Secretary for Security with directorate support in dealing with the problems caused by the large number of VMs in Hong Kong. Since then we sought retention of the posts annually, the last retention being up to 30 September 1997. In the light of the substantial increase in workload and complexity of work arising from the reunification with China and a number of new initiatives, and the closure of the Vietnamese Division, we consider it necessary to re-organise the directorate structure of the SB to ensure sufficient directorate support to allow the Bureau to carry out its duties efficiently and effectively.


18.The Civil Service Bureau considers that the proposed ranking and grading of the three posts is appropriate.


19.The Standing Committee on Directorate Salaries and Conditions of Service has advised that the grading proposed for the posts would be appropriate if the posts were to be created.

Security Bureau
September 1997

Enclosure 2 to EC(97-98)21

Detailed Account of the Major Political and Social Issues Facing Each Division

Division 1

Security liaison - SB is responsible for liaison with overseas law enforcement agencies and Consulates in Hong Kong on matters relating to internal security, counter-terrorism, anti-smuggling, anti-illegal immigration, and counter-illegal trades in weapons of mass destruction and strategic commodities from the security angle at the central government level.

2.Liaison with the PLA Garrison - SB is responsible for liaison with the PLA Garrison to enable them to settle in Hong Kong and to carry out their defence responsibilities in accordance with the Basic Law and the Garrison Law. We are studying the need for local legislation to underpin the key provisions of the Garrison Law, and to review and adapt the Ordinances with reference to the military to provide a clear and unambiguous framework for the Garrison to operate in Hong Kong.

3.Cross boundary liaison - SB is responsible for maintaining the integrity of our boundary with Guangdong. We will need to strengthen liaison with the Guangdong security authorities to co-ordinate efforts against illegal immigration, smuggling and other cross-boundary crimes at the bureau level.

4.Bilateral arrangements in law enforcement - With the legislative backup from the Ordinances on Surrender of Fugitive Offenders and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters (MLA), we will seek to expand the existing network of bilateral agreement with foreign jurisdictions. With Hong Kong ' s reunification with China, we need to develop arrangements for rendition and MLA with the Mainland in accordance with the requirements of BL95. In view of the significant difference in the two legal systems and the lack of any such arrangements at present, we need to build up an entirely new framework. The process will involve detailed research into the legal and judicial systems of China and intensive discussions with Mainland authorities. As there is at present no law to provide for mutual juridical assistance with Mainland authorities, it will be necessary to prepare local legislation to underpin the new arrangements once these are agreed with the Mainland authorities.

5.Basic Law Article 23 offences - There will also be a need to carry out a major policy review on how to legislate comprehensively to implement the concepts set out in BL 23. In view of the complexity of the BL 23 concepts (some of which such as subversion and secession are new to the Common Law) and the sensitivity of the matter, we anticipate that a lot of in-depth study and consultation will be required before we can formulate a widely acceptable legislative proposal.

Division 2

6.Immigration - SB will need to work with the Immigration Department to ensure the integrity of the HKSAR border in immigration control terms, while at the same time maintain Hong Kong ' s reputation as an efficient and friendly centre for travellers. On travel convenience, we will need to continue to monitor the issuance of and promote the acceptance of the HKSAR passports and other travel documents for visa free travel by other countries. We will also carry out a review on our visa regime for foreign nationals to make sure that they reflect the latest economic, social and cultural relationship between the HKSAR and third countries, as well as to achieve greater efficiency in administration.

7.We will need to ensure that applications for Right of Abode and declaration of foreign nationality are verified within a reasonable period of time. On permanent residency, the Immigration Department must ensure the smooth implementation of BL 24. With the introduction of the ' Certificate of Entitlement ' scheme, we need to have a closer look at the One Way Permit system in both the short and long terms. We must monitor the situation very carefully in conjunction with other policy bureaux, balancing the need for speeding up family reunion on the one hand and smoothing over of additional demands on our education, medical, housing and other social services on the other. We also need to work with other bureaux to review our policy for admission of Mainland people into Hong Kong for employment, training, education, etc. To achieve these goals, we will need to work closely and liaise extensively with Mainland authorities.

8.To ensure that Hong Kong residents and visitors can enjoy first class travel facilities in and out of Hong Kong, we are planning to introduce a number of new services at the new airport at Chek Lap Kok. These include providing dedicated immigration and customs clearance service at the Business Aviation Centre, implementing a Travel Pass Scheme for frequent travellers, and joining the APEC Travel Card Scheme. Planning and co-ordination of these new services require a lot of input at the bureau level.

9.We have adopted a pro-active approach in tackling illegal immigration after the reunification with China. We will strengthen liaison with Mainland authorities, particularly the Guangdong authorities to sustain action in maintaining control upon entry. The stepping up of enforcement action against illegal immigration have a knock-on effect on the number of petition cases received. At present, all statutory petitions must be put to the Executive Council for decision. This is not only lengthy (may take up to several months), but also prone to abuse as petitioners are normally allowed to extend their stay in Hong Kong to await the outcome of their petitions. We are planning to extend the purview of the Immigration Tribunal to cover statutory petitions to enable us to respond quicker to petitioners.

10.Fight Fire and Rescue Services - Following the major fires at Garley Building, Mei Foo Sun Chuen and Top One Karaoke, there is tremendous public pressure to improve fire safety in buildings and karaoke establishments. We are planning to introduce new legislation to upgrade fire safety installations in old commercial buildings and require karaoke establishments to be licensed. We will develop programmes to strengthen community involvement in the fight against fire and will also organise publicity campaigns and training programmes/seminars/exhibitions to raise the fire safety awareness of the building management and the general public. SB will play a central co-ordinating role and will provide the necessary legislative, policy and resources guidance and support to the departments.

11.Correctional Services - We are faced with three major issues: measures to address prisoner overcrowding; measures to enhance the transparency of our prison sentences review systems; and improvements to rehabilitation programmes for offenders. We are committed to relieve prison overcrowding and have been co-ordinating a number of projects to increase penal accommodation. We have to provide the necessary policy, legislation, resources and secretariat support for the Long-term Prison Sentences Review Board, the Post-release Supervision Board and the Release under Supervision Board. To further improve our rehabilitation programmes, we will examine the recommendations of the research study on the effectiveness of rehabilitation programmes for young offenders. Lastly we need to continue to negotiate bilateral agreements with third countries to facilitate the transfer of prisoners to and from Hong Kong.

12.Aviation Security - Pursuant to the enactment of the Aviation Security Ordinance, the Secretary for Security is designated as the statutory authority responsible for ensuring aviation security in Hong Kong. Although monitoring and inspection of aviation security operations at the new airport will be performed by the Director of Civil Aviation, the Secretary for Security needs urgent and strong support at the senior directorate level to ensure the timely completion of the required work to meet airport commissioning in early 1998, and the effective operation of aviation security thereafter.

13.Emergency response and contingency planning - Having concentrated on improving the organisation, procedures and communications systems for emergency response and contingency planning at the Government Secretariat level in the past year, we will extend the improvements to the departmental level. This will involve improving liaison with departmental staff responsible for managing departmental emergency centres, and providing training and exercises to them so as to enhance their capabilities and awareness in emergency response management and contingency planning.

Narcotics Division

14.The Government adopts a five-pronged approach in combating drug trafficking and abuse - law enforcement, preventive education and publicity, treatment and rehabilitation, research and international co-operation. Since money laundering is a fluid and evolving phenomenon, efforts to combat money laundering must be dynamic. We have therefore established a working party to review Hong Kong anti-money laundering regime, the objective of which is partly to bring our anti-money laundering measures fully up-to-date and partly to prepare for the second mutual evaluation of Hong Kong's anti-money laundering regime by the intergovernmental Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF). This evaluation by FATF is of great importance as its findings would be publicised and affect Hong Kong's international reputation in the anti-money laundering field.

15.We will conduct a review of the Beat Drugs Fund which was established in March 1996 with a capital of $350 million to provide funding support for worthwhile anti-drug related projects. The review will focus on the Fund ' s funding criteria and the monitoring mechanism for these projects. In addition, we will set up an Investment Sub-Committee under the Beat Drugs Fund Governing Committee to enhance the long-term value of the $350 million grant to produce a stable source of income sufficient to meet funding requests on an annual basis.

16.To improve the provision of services for drug abusers, we will review the drug treatment and rehabilitation services conducted in conjunction with the Hong Kong Council of Social Services. We will also strengthen the preventive education programmes in view of the changing trend of drug abuse among young people. In conjunction with the Social Welfare Department, we are looking into the effectiveness of services provided by non-subvented drug treatment and rehabilitation agencies with a view to including them in the subvention system. This includes setting forth subvention policy and arrangements as well as other related issues such as the setting of service standards and manning ratios for specific types of services. Concurrently, we are reviewing the Drug Addicts Treatment and Rehabilitation Ordinance as the existing provisions no longer reflect the actual needs. We will be consulting the voluntary sector and researching on relevant laws in overseas countries to examine whether a new legislation is needed.

Vietnamese Division

17.Although 98.5% of the Vietnamese refugees and migrants have been resettled overseas or repatriated to Vietnam, there are still about 1 300 VRs and 800 VMs remaining in Hong Kong as at end of July 1997. Added to this is the increasing number of VIIs arriving in Hong Kong. Up to the end of July 1997, 1 255 VIIs were intercepted this year as compared with 341 for the same period last year and 1 038 for the whole of 1996. The Vietnamese Division is now reviewing the whole policy on Vietnamese refugees/migrants/illegal immigrants, including the port of first asylum policy, Part IIIA of the Immigration Ordinance (which provides for screening procedures, detention and removal of former residents of Vietnam), the problem of the UNHCR debt, the future of Pillar Point Vietnamese Refugee Centre and a durable solution for the unresettleable VRs, etc. The Division is also responsible for negotiating with the Vietnamese Government for the return of the remaining VMs, including those rejected by Vietnam as non-nationals, and those cleared by Vietnam but could not yet be repatriated for a variety of reasons. The Division has also to seek Vietnam ' s cooperation in stemming the flow of VIIs to Hong Kong and in agreeing to a programme of rapid repatriation of VIIs to Vietnam.

Enclosure 4 to EC(97-98)21

Job Description
Deputy Secretary for Security 1

Rank : Administrative Officer Staff Grade B1 (D4)

Duties and Responsibilities :

Responsible to the Secretary for Security for -

  1. Policy relating to internal security, public order and fight crime matters;

  2. Policy, legislation and resources in respect of the Hong Kong Police Force, Customs and Excise Department (Security Bureau aspects) and the Government Flying Service;

  3. Defence issues, including liaison with the People ' s Liberation Army Garrison;

  4. Policy aspects of Hong Kong ' s boundary;

  5. International law-enforcement issues (including surrender of fugitive offenders and mutual legal assistance); and

  6. Policy on Basic Law Article 23 offences.

Enclosure 5 to EC(97-98)21

Job Description
Deputy Secretary for Security 2

Rank : Administrative Officer Staff Grade B (D3)

Duties and Responsibilities :

Responsible to the Secretary for Security for -

  1. Policy relating to fire fighting and rescue services, correctional services, aviation security and emergency response management;

  2. Policy, legislation and resources relating to Fire Services Department, Correctional Services Department, Civil Aid Service and Auxiliary Medical Service and aviation security;

  3. Policy on contingency planning and emergency response management for natural and man-made disasters, search and rescue operations, and other emergencies;

  4. Management of emergency response at central government level including the Emergency Support Unit;

  5. Co-ordination of Disciplined Services Consultative Council-related issues;

  6. Resources allocation and management in respect of the Security Bureau programme areas; and

  7. Bureau administration.

Enclosure 6 to EC(97-98)21

Job Description
Deputy Secretary for Security 3

Rank : Administrative Officer Staff Grade B (D3)

Duties and Responsibilities :

Responsible to the Secretary for Security for -

  1. Policy relating to the "controlling immigration" programme area, including

    - Policy on entry of people into Hong Kong,
    - Policy on movement of Hong Kong residents,
    - Policy on illegal immigration,
    - Registration of Persons, and
    - Petitions and Deportation;

  2. Policy, legislation and resources in respect of the Immigration Department;

  3. Matters arising from the implementation of the Chinese Nationality Law in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region;

  4. Co-ordinating Government ' s efforts in repatriating Vietnamese Migrants (VMs) and Vietnamese illegal immigrants (VIIs);

  5. Liaising with Vietnamese Government regarding the clearance and repatriation of VMs and VIIs; and

  6. Liaising with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and Consuls-General of resettlement countries on the resettlement of Vietnamese Refugees.

Enclosure 7 to EC(97-98)21

Job Description
Principal Assistant Secretary for Security (C)

Rank : Administrative Officer Staff Grade C (D2)

Duties and Responsibilities :

Responsible to the Deputy Secretary for Security 3 for -

  1. Policy on the entry of people from the Mainland into Hong Kong for settlement (Right of Abode, One Way Permit, "Certificate of Entitlement" scheme);

  2. Policy on the movement of Hong Kong residents

    - Travel convenience;
    - Visa free access;

  3. Matters arising from the implementation of the Chinese Nationality Law in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, including

    - Legislation;
    - Other policy input; and

  4. Policy, legislation and resources in respect of the Immigration Department.

Enclosure 8 to EC(97-98)21

Job Description
Principal Assistant Secretary for Security (D)

Rank : Administrative Officer Staff Grade C (D2)

Duties and Responsibilities :

Responsible to the Deputy Secretary for Security 3 for -

  1. Policy on all illegal immigration matters, including

    - Vietnamese Migrant/Vietnamese Refugee/Ex-Chinese Vietnamese Illegal Immigrant/Vietnamese Illegal Immigrant,
    - Anti-Illegal Immigrant operation and measures,
    - Detention,
    - Repatriation, and
    - Contingency plan on influx of Illegal Immigrants;

  2. Policy on the handling of all petitions and deportation matters, including

    - Immigration Tribunal cases,
    - Deportation Tribunal cases, and
    - Registration of Persons Tribunal;

  3. Policy on the entry of non-Hong Kong residents for purposes other than settlement

    - Visit (visa regime, Two Way Permit),
    - Employment (Normal policy, implementation of labour schemes, Foreign Domestic Helpers),
    - Training and study, and
    - Travel Facilitation;

  4. Immigration statistics; and

  5. Directing and co-ordinating local publicity, community liaison and information activities on Vietnamese Migrant and Vietnamese Refugee matters.