Legislative Council

LC Paper No. LS 272/98-99

Paper for the House Committee Meeting
of the Legislative Council
on 24 September 1999

Legal Service Division Further Report on
Adaptation of Laws (No. 9) Bill 1998

Members may recall that the Legal Service Division made a report to the House Committee on 27 November 1998 on the Bill (LegCo Paper No. LS63/98-99 refers). To recap, the Bill deals with the adaptation of the Bills of Exchange Ordinance and 13 other ordinances relating to private banks. Straight forward terminological changes such as adapting the word "the Colony" to "Hong Kong" are proposed for the Bills of Exchange Ordinance. In some of the private banks ordinances, there are saving of the rights of Her Majesty the Queen provisions that need to be adapted.

2. At the House Committee meeting, Members agreed to defer consideration of this Bill until the Bills Committee on the Adaptation of Laws Bill 1998 has completed its work. That Bill was passed by the Legislative Council with amendments on the saving provision on 28 April 1999. In that Bills Committee, the Administration agreed that the wordings in item 10 of Annex 3 of the Decision of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress on Treatment of the Laws Previously in Force in Hong Kong made in accordance with Article 160 of the Basic Laws of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China should be adopted. Hence, the term "the Central People's Government" is to be replaced by the word "Central Authorities". The saving provision will read as "Nothing in this Ordinance shall affect or be deemed to affect the rights of the Central Authorities or the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region under the Basic Law and other laws". We have informed the Financial Services Bureau accordingly and received draft Committee Stage amendments to that effect on 10 July 1999 which is attached at Annex A.

3. With the proposed Committee Stage amendments, we are satisfied that the legal and drafting aspects of this Bill are in order. It is recommended that the Bill is ready for resumption of Second Reading debate.

Prepared by
Ho Ying-chu, Anita
Assistant Legal Adviser
Legislative Council Secretariat
20 September 1999