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Transcript of the SETW


Following is the transcript of a media session by the Secretary for Environment, Transport and Works , Dr Sarah Liao, after officiating at the Lok Ma Chau Spur Line Ground- breaking Ceremony this afternoon (January 9):

Reporter: The first question is about the 24-hour crossing issue, are your sure that it would be implemented smoothly and the second part is about the Policy Address, on environmental issues ...?

SETW: First of all, the 24-hour crossing at Lok Ma Chau is going to go ahead on the 27th , and we are very confident that we had made all the arrangements to allow that to happen and everything will go smoothly. What I am trying to explain to the press is that in the midnight to 6 o'clock sessions when taxi and public mini buses are asking for direct access to the Lok Ma Chau restrict area, that's where we are considering a test; a pilot test to make sure that everything will go smoothly. The basic reason is because when you get to the Lok Ma Chau control building and that's it. The taxi will end there and who is going to pick up the passengers from thereon. And also because we have a lot of construction works going on, which can only be done after 11 pm when the main bulk of the traffic is gone so if we open it up again to more traffic (i.e. other mode of public transport), how are we going to guarantee the safety of the construction site as well as the people crossing the border. So safety is our main concern.

As for your environmental issue, the Chief Executive had purposely concentrated on economic development for Hong Kong in the next two years. Such that everything can be up and running in full splendour of Hong Kong again. And in his speech, he mentioned that in order for us to attract investment, in order that Hong Kong becomes a World Class City i.e. the central and the hub for the Pearl River Delta, we need to have a quality environment. And that's where I would have to come in. In our Policy Agenda, we have actually listed a large number of initiatives, which will help to give Hong Kong the quality environment. And that is very important, I don't think he had missed out.

(Please also refer to the Chinese part of Dr Liao's transcript)

End/Thursday, January 9, 2003


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