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Government public transport fare concession scheme to include more green minibus routes from March 20

     Four more green minibus routes will be included in the Government Public Transport Fare Concession Scheme for the Elderly and Eligible Persons with Disabilities (the Scheme) from March 20 (Sunday).

     The four routes serving Yuen Long District (see Annex 1) are run by two operators (including a newly registered operator). Both of them will join the Scheme with effect from March 20. There will be altogether 495 routes run by 154 operators (see Annex 2 for a full list of all routes) under the Scheme, covering around 96 per cent of all green minibus routes and operators.

     All green minibuses participating in the Scheme will carry a logo of the Scheme (see attachment) on their windscreens, next to their side doors and atop their Octopus readers for ease of identification. The operators concerned will also help publicise the Scheme by putting up posters at green minibus termini.

     The Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, said he was pleased to note that the Scheme has been very well received. "The overall number of daily passenger trips taken by beneficiaries of the Scheme amounts to nearly 946 000, an increase of around 28 per cent over the daily average of about 740 000 made before the Scheme's extension to green minibuses. Every day, an average of some 829 000 trips were made by elderly people and some 117 000 by eligible persons with disabilities.

     "The Scheme has proved highly effective in encouraging the elderly and persons with disabilities to participate in the community. This will facilitate the building of a caring and inclusive society and promote active ageing.

     "The Government will continue to encourage the few remaining green minibus operators to join the Scheme and offer relevant assistance to further expand the Scheme's coverage," Mr Cheung said.

     The Government launched the Scheme in phases starting from June 28, 2012, covering the general Mass Transit Railway (MTR) lines, franchised bus routes operated by five franchised bus companies, ferry routes run by 13 ferry operators and most green minibus routes.

     With the Scheme's extension to green minibuses and the steady rise in Hong Kong's elderly population, the Government's reimbursement of revenue forgone to the operators will rise to around $1.1 billion in 2016-17 from about $900 million in 2015-16.

     The Scheme allows elderly people aged 65 or above as well as persons with 100 per cent disabilities aged below 65 receiving Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) or Disability Allowance (DA) to travel on MTR, the above mentioned bus routes and ferry routes, and green minibuses carrying the logo at any time at a fare of $2 per trip.

     To enjoy the concessionary fare, the elderly can simply use the Elder Octopus or their Personalised Octopus whereas eligible persons with disabilities shall use a Personalised Octopus with "Persons with Disabilities Status".

     Eligible persons with disabilities who have not yet obtained a Personalised Octopus with "Persons with Disabilities Status" may obtain application forms at the Customer Service Centres in designated MTR stations. As for eligible persons with disabilities who are new applicants of CSSA or DA, the Social Welfare Department will, upon approving their CSSA or DA applications, mail them the application forms for the Personalised Octopus with "Persons with Disabilities Status".

     The Scheme is not applicable to fares paid in cash. When the original fare of a journey is below $2, the beneficiaries will only need to pay the original fare.

     Details of the Scheme are available on the Labour and Welfare Bureau's website ( For enquiries, please call 1823.

Ends/Monday, March 14, 2016
Issued at HKT 12:01


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