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Transcript of remarks at press conference on Commission on Poverty Summit (with photo/video)

     The Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung; the Chief Secretary for Administration and Chairman of the Commission on Poverty, Mrs Carrie Lam; the Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung; the Acting Government Economist, Ms Reddy Ng; and the Deputy Commissioner for Census and Statistics, Mr Leslie Tang, today (September 28) held a press conference on Commission on Poverty Summit in the Auditorium, Central Government Offices, Tamar. Following is the transcript of remarks by Mrs Lam at the press conference:

Reporter: Now that you've drawn up a line what concrete plans do you have in mind to really alleviate poverty and which groups do you think are most in need of help?

Chief Secretary for Administration and Chairman of the Commission on Poverty: Based on the statistics that we have analysed, it is quite obvious to us that the working poor as a category will be a priority area, and they are making up almost over half a million of the population, and these are households who are at the moment not assisted by the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance scheme. Within these households we find there's quite a large number of children, so we are really guided by the philosophy that we should provide as many opportunities as possible for upward social mobility and to tackle this phenomenon of inter-generational poverty, then I would say that the working poor households with children will be one of the priorities. We are also very impressed, that actually amongst many of these working poor households, they are working very hard, it's long hours. But still, despite the protection under the statutory minimum wage, because of the large number of dependents in these households, the statutory minimum wage alone is no guarantee for lifting them out of poverty, or no guarantee of meeting their entire household needs, so this is an area that we will have to pay attention to. And another cluster of areas that we would have to pay attention to will be what we call the special needs groups. That's why we have a dedicated task force to look into the situation of special needs groups, particularly the ethnic minorities, the new arrivals, single parents and so on. So, with or without the poverty line and all these statistics we are already putting in a lot of attention to these special groups.

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

Ends/Saturday, September 28, 2013
Issued at HKT 17:17


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