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CS speaks on breakfast meeting (with photos/video)

     Following is the transcript of remarks by the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, at a media session after a breakfast meeting on constitutional development at the Central Government Offices this morning (March 26):

Reporter: Society is extremely divided right now. Are you actually confident that a consensus can be reached?

Chief Secretary for Administration: I remain prudently optimistic that we should be able to achieve universal suffrage in 2017, having taken into account a number of factors. First is (that) to achieve universal suffrage is the sincere wish of the Central Authorities. The timetable to achieve universal suffrage was given to us by the National People's Congress Standing Committee back in 2007. And in recent months, you will have noticed that many national leaders have come out to reiterate the fact that the Central Authorities are very determined to give Hong Kong universal suffrage in 2017. Secondly is, as I have said on many occasions, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government is also very determined to achieve universal suffrage by 2017. That's why in the last three, four months, we have spared no efforts in engaging with the people with a view really to narrowing the differences and to build consensus. But finally, in my opinion, the most important point is the community at large, they are very anxious to see and to be given the opportunity to cast their vote in the selection of the Chief Executive by 2017. So with all these factors taken into account, I remain prudently optimistic that we should be able to bridge the current differences in opinion and try to forge consensus for achieving universal suffrage by 2017. Thank you very much.

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

Ends/Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Issued at HKT 11:57


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