Questions Raised by HON LEE Wing-tat in the meeting of Housing Panel on 31st July 1996

Housing Needs

1. The projection of housing needs with the existing Housing Demand Model is based on the assumption that housing policies currently in force would remain unchanged. New projection of housing needs will be made by the HB when there are alterations in current policies or changes in various factors such as the size of population and economic situation. As ten years are generally required for formulating housing plan, how will the HB ensure the balance of housing supply and demand?

2. According to the estimation made by the HB, only 17% of the legal immigrants from China have no next-of-kin in Hong Kong and are assumed to have new housing needs upon their arrival. What are the estimated proportions of their housing needs in the two components mentioned above? As housing needs of other immigrants will be captured under such categories as “splitting from complex family structures” and “inadequately housed households”, what are the proportions of their housing needs in these two components? On what basis has the HB assumed that those legal immigrants with next-of-kin in Hong Kong (comprising 83%) would share accommodation with their relatives?

3. Housing needs of various components for both public and private housing are derived from multiplying the estimated numbers of households which will be likely to generate housing needs by Accommodation Generation Rate (AGR) and Splitting Ratio (SR):

  1. It is learnt that AGR refers to the assessment of future demand on the basis of statistical data of demand in the past such as marriage rates, divorce rates, rates of splitting of households, proportion of returners etc. These factors, however, are subject to alterations as a result of the changes in socio-economic conditions. How will the HB adjust its plan for housing production in response to such changes?
  2. According to the information paper of LegCo Panel on Housing (the Panel), the Government assumes that:
    1. 10% of couples under the category of first marriage already have separate living quarter before marriage. What is the basis on which the assumption is made?
    2. 80% of returners have new housing needs. From what assumption is the estimation derived?

4. a) It is mentioned in the information paper of the Panel that SR is derived from matching household income level with the public housing income limit, which gives a SR of 63% public housing and 37% private housing(PH). It is pointed out in the paper that some household eligible for public housing prefer to acquire their accommodation in the private sector. What are the reasons for that? How many of these households choose to purchase private housing units because of the long waiting time for allocation of public rental housing(PRH) and the low success rate of application for Home Ownership Scheme(HOS) flats? How many of them still looking forward to allocation with public housing?

b) It is pointed out in the information paper provided to the Panel by the HB that the future SR for PRH: HOS: PH is assumed to be 25%:25%:50%. The SR is derived by making reference to family income, current SR and the estimation that some tenants living at public housing at present prefer to move to private housing. The rationale given in the paper is that a proportion of occupiers in the private sector are people with income below HOS income limit and Sandwich Class Housing income limit. Will the Government conduct any survey on the housing aspirations of households for different kinds of housing?

5. Please elaborate on the methods for deriving SR between PRH, HOS and PH for the following components of housing needs:

  1. First Marriage (25%:25%:50%);
  2. Re-marriage (25%:25%:50%);
  3. Divorces (25%:25%:50%); and
  4. Legal Immigrants from China (25%:25%:50%).

Private Housing

6. What is the Government projection of public demand for private housing in the period of 1996/97 to 2005/06? On what assumption is such projection made? What is the assumed increase rate in the gross national product in the territory per year? What is the annual increase in family income? What is the estimated number of new flats to be obtained from redevelopment of private housing each year? What is the assumed increase rate in housing price each year? In assessing housing needs, what assumption will be made on the aspirations for home ownership and for acquiring separate accommodation when new family is formed? How is the assumption derived? Will survey be conducted among the households so as to obtain more accurate information? How many private housing units are planned to be supplied? (Please provide the breakdown of the estimated numbers of housing units to be supplied and the housing demand of each year.)

7. What is the plot ratio for the construction of private housing? Is there any difference in the ratio when it is compared with that for the production of public housing? If so, why?

8. The production of private housing is affected by a number of factors. What role will be played by the HB if there is any discrepancy between the actual and the estimated production? If the production of private housing falls short of the Government’s anticipation, what adjustment will be made in the production of public housing and the public housing policy in order to meet housing demand?

Land Supply

9. It is understood that the planning of land is undertaken by the Planning Department. What role is played by the HB in land supply?

10. Is additional land identified as land reserve when housing production plan is formulated? What is the proportion of land reserve to the land earmarked for housing development? How many housing units may be built on the land reserved?

Last Updated on 20 Aug, 1998