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Transcript of remarks by CS on Commission on Poverty (with video)

     Following is the transcript of remarks by the Chief Secretary for Administration and Chairman of the Commission on Poverty, Mrs Carrie Lam, at a media session at the lobby of West Wing, Central Government Offices, Tamar, this afternoon (March 28):

Reporter: Secretary, what is the progress in setting up the poverty line? And the second question is, you've mentioned there are three projects under the Community Care Fund will be allocated extra money. Will you describe that this is only piecemeal to address the poverty problem in Hong Kong?

Chief Secretary for Administration: Well, as far as the Community Care Fund is concerned, it has been providing very effective programmes and projects in the last couple of years, so the Financial Secretary has proposed to give us an extra $15 billion injection so that, pending the development of more effective poverty alleviation policies, the fund will continue to have resources to assist those in need. And one of the purposes of this $15 billion injection is to ensure that, where projects introduced by the Community Care Fund have been proven to be effective and have been welcomed by the recipients, we will have the financial ability to continue those programmes, pending the final decision on whether they should become part of the ongoing policies of the Government. So I wouldn't say that this is a piecemeal approach. In fact, this is a very effective intervention to ensure early assistance being given to those in need.

     As far as the progress in the setting of a poverty line is concerned, I jokingly said that the purpose of this meet-the-media session is to dispel some speculations that we are ready to announce the poverty line today. In fact, we are not. We are still engaging the CoP (Commission on Poverty) members in very active discussions over various aspects of the poverty line, and in due course the Legislative Council, a relevant poverty subcommittee, is going to organise a session to further discuss the poverty line, and we will positively respond to those requests and continue the dialogue with the Legislative Council Members so that ultimately, when we finish our work, I hope that this is a piece of work which will have the broad community consensus.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Thursday, March 28, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:54


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