PELB(E) 55/10/161 Pt 27

Tel : 2848 2606
Fax : 2530 5264
20 November 1998

Clerk to the LegCo Panel on
Environmental Affairs
LegCo Secretariat
3/F, Citibank Plaza
Garden Road
Hong Kong

(Attn : Miss Odelia Leung)

Dear Miss Leung,

LegCo Panel on Environmental Affairs

Follow up to meeting on 26 October 1998

Thank you for your letter of 29 October 1998. Our response to your requests are set out below, using your same notations :

  1. The meetings referred to are government-to-government meetings. At such meetings we cover much detail in a full and frank manner. If the minutes were to be made public it is likely that the frankness would diminish as a result and this would not be conducive to working out solutions to issues under discussion. For this reason these minutes are considered confidential and we intend that they should remain so. However we have already provided summaries of our discussions with the mainland authorities covering the main points, vide our letter of 29 September and our paper entitled "Discussions with Mainland side on SSDS" for the special meeting on 26 October.

  2. The requested information is already in our paper entitled "Comparison of Centralised and Distributed Sewage Treatment Systems" for the special meeting on 5 October.

  3. It is our intention to achieve the objective that the operating and maintenance costs of services for the Sewage Charge are to be borne equally by the Administration and polluters upon the completion of all the projects under SSDS Stage I and the operation at full capacity of the Stonecutters Island Sewage Treatment Works. We review the financial position of sewage services regularly in order to maintain the shared responsibility between the Government and the public in cleaning up the environment. We will consult LegCo in good time on any fee proposals in this regard.

Yours sincerely,

(Danny Tsui)
for Secretary for Planning,
Environment and Lands