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LegCo to debate opposing the introduction of a Goods and Services Tax

The following is issued on behalf of the Legislative Council Secretariat:

     The Legislative Council will hold a meeting this Wednesday (October 18) at 11am in the Chamber of the Legislative Council Building. During the meeting, Members will debate a motion on opposing the introduction of a Goods and Services Tax.

     The motion, to be moved by Dr Hon Yeung Sum, states: :That this Council opposes the introduction of a Goods and Services Tax.;

     Dr Hon David Li Kwok-po will move an amendment to Dr Hon Yeung Sum・s motion.

     Members will also debate a motion on introducing legislation to regulate clandestine photo-taking. The motion, to be proposed by Hon Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen, says: :That, as there are from time to time complaints about serious invasion of personal privacy by some media organisations and earlier on, peep photos of a female artiste changing her clothes had been taken and published by a magazine which seriously invaded the privacy of the artiste and trampled on women・s dignity, thereby causing a great public outcry; this Council urges the Government to expeditiously take measures, including:

(a) reviewing the imposition of sentence under the existing Control of Obscene and Indecent Articles Ordinance so that penalty with deterrent effect is imposed on the offenders;

(b) criminalising the invasion of privacy on the basis of the recommendations made by the Law Reform Commission on the protection of personal privacy in March this year, and encouraging in-depth discussion among the media, the performing arts sector and the general public about the contents of the bill concerned; and

(c) urging the media to exercise more self-discipline, so as to strike a proper balance between protection of personal privacy and freedom of the press.

     Hon Albert Ho Chun-yan will move an amendment to Hon Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen・s motion.

     Meanwhile, Hon Tommy Cheung will move two separate resolutions under the Interpretation and General Clauses Ordinance to extend the period for amending the Public Health (Animals and Birds) (Exhibitions) (Amendment) Regulation 2006 and the Food Business (Amendment) Regulation 2006, laid on the table of the Legislative Council on July 10, to the meeting of November 8. Moreover, Hon Tsang Yok-sing will move a resolution under the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People・s Republic of China to amend the Rules of Procedure of the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

     The Secretary for Health, Welfare and Food will move a resolution under the Pharmacy and Poisons Ordinance to seek the Council・s approval to the Pharmacy and Poisons (Amendment) (No. 4) Regulation 2006 and the Poisons List (Amendment) (No. 4) Regulation 2006, made by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board on September 25.

     On bills, Members will resume Second Reading debates on the Smoking (Public Health) (Amendment) Bill 2005 and the Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children Incorporation (Amendment) Bill 2006. If the Bills are supported by Members and receive their Second Readings, they will then go through the Committee Stage and be read the third time. The City University of Hong Kong (Amendment) Bill 2006, meanwhile,  will be introduced into the Council for First and Second Readings; debate on the Bill will be adjourned.

     In the meantime, the Chief Secretary for Administration will present the Government Minute in response to the Report No.46 of the Public Accounts Committee dated July 2006 and will address the Council.

     During the meeting, Members will ask the Government 20 questions on various policy areas, six of which require oral replies.

     The agenda of the above meeting can be obtained via the Legislative Council InfoFax Service (Tel: 2869 9568) or the Legislative Council website ( Members of the public may also visit the Legislative Council website and click :Voice Broadcast; to listen to the live audio webcast of the meeting.

     Members of the public are welcome to observe the proceedings of the meeting from the public galleries of the Legislative Council Chamber. They may reserve seats by calling 2869 9399 during office hours. Seats will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Ends/Monday, October 16, 2006
Issued at HKT 17:48