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LegCo passes the Revenue (Personalized Vehicle Registration Marks) Bill 2005

    The Legislative Council today (December 14) passed the Revenue (Personalized Vehicle Registration Marks) (PVRMs) Bill 2005, which seeks to amend the Road Traffic Ordinance and the Road Traffic (Registration and Licensing of Vehicles) Regulations to implement the PVRMs Scheme.

     Moving the resumption of the Second Reading of the bill, the Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, Mr Frederick Ma, said that the PVRMs Scheme will not only open up a new source of government revenue, but will also allow vehicle owners to be creative in designing vehicle registration marks which they prefer, or carry special meaning to them.  

     In view of the importance the community attaches to poverty alleviation work, the Financial Secretary announced at the end of May 2005 that the net proceeds from the sale of PVRMs would be used for poverty alleviation initiatives.

     "The Government will set aside sums equivalent to the estimated net proceeds from the sale of PVRMs in the next five years for poverty alleviation initiatives," Mr Ma added.

     The Transport Department will allow for combinations of up to eight letters of the alphabet, numerals and/or blank spaces for PVRMs. The key features of the scheme are as follows:

(a) Applications for PVRMs should be made to the Commissioner for Transport;

(b) PVRMs combinations may have up to a maximum of eight letters of the alphabet (except "I", "O" and "Q" which will not be allowed), numerals and/or blank spaces; a blank space will count as one of the permitted characters; and there should be no more than four identical letters or numerals placed side by side in a PVRM;

(c) PVRM combinations must not be offensive to good taste or decency, offensive to a reasonable person, refer to a triad title or nomenclature or have a triad connotation, or be confusing for law enforcement, or detrimental to road safety; and

(d) PVRM combinations must not cause a reasonable person to believe that the vehicles bearing them belong to or the persons using the vehicles represent the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), any country or the government of any country, an international organisation in which the HKSAR Government participates, the offices of the Central People's Government in HKSAR, or any public body in HKSAR; and

(e) PVRM combinations must not duplicate existing VRMs or be of a similar pattern to existing forms of VRMs or permit/licence numbers and they must not duplicate the marks reserved for certain types of vehicles.

     The Government will review the operational arrangements of the new scheme one year after its implementation.

     The Transport Department has started preparatory work for the PVRM auctions, including upgrading the department's licensing system. The department's current plan is to announce details of application in the first quarter of 2006, and to begin accepting applications in the second quarter of 2006. The applications will be subject to ballot after closure of the application period if there are a lot of applications. Applications that are successfully balloted and meet the basic requirements on the PVRM combination will be subject to a deposit of $5,000. The Commissioner for Transport will consider the applications in accordance with the conditions/criteria set out in the new legislation, and will be assisted by the Police, the Home Affairs Bureau, any other departments as appropriate and non-officials in his consideration of the applications.

Ends/Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Issued at HKT 15:16


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