Legislative Council

LC Paper No. LS 160/98-99

Paper for the House Committee Meeting
of the Legislative Council
on 23 April 1999

Legal Service Division Further Report on
Adaptation of Laws (No. 6) Bill 1999

At the House Committee meeting held on 12 March 1999, members agreed to defer decision on the Bill pending our enquiry with the Administration about the meaning of the term "Crown Agents" and the practical effects of its repeal (section 3 of Schedule 7 to the Bill).

"Crown Agents" (section 3 of Schedule 7 to the Bill)

2. The gist of the Administration's reply is that the "Crown Agents" is an independent, non-profit making organisation incorporated by the UK Parliament. It acts as the financial, professional and commercial agents for almost 100 Governments and over 300 public authorities and international organisations. In March 1997, the "Crown Agents" was given a clear and independent legal identity when it became a company incorporated under the UK Companies Act. The Administration confirms that the "Crown Agents" has never performed any services on behalf of the trustee of the Emergency Relief Fund. The Administration is also of the opinion that the repeal of "Crown Agents" would not limit the trustee's choice of investment in view of the wide range of investment facilities currently available. Members may refer to the Administration reply at Annex for detailed information.

3. With the Administration's reply, we are satisfied that the legal and drafting aspects of the Bill are in order. The other proposed amendments are technical in nature and no outstanding points of general principle of the Adaptation of Law Exercise are involved. Members are recommended to support the resumption of Second Reading debate of the Bill.


Prepared by
Lam Ping-man, Stephen
Assistant Legal Adviser
Legislative Council Secretariat
21 April 1999