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Transcript of remarks by CS at media session (with video)

     Following is the transcript of remarks by the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, at a media session at Central Government Offices today (March 18):

Reporter: Chief Secretary, how did your meeting with the pan-democrats go today? How did you decide on the priority items in LegCo that need to be discussed? And, looking at how you have prioritised it, do you think there will be less filibustering and therefore more items passed before the end of this LegCo session?

Chief Secretary for Administration: The proposed reprioritisation by the Government is based on what the Chief Executive has said in public, and that is we want to receive LegCo approval of important livelihood items as early as possible. So that's basically the first criterion. The second is, of course, in terms of time urgency, for example the Eastern Harbour Tunnel is a time-critical item. So basically, we are using those two criteria to reprioritise the items for the Legislative Council as well as for the Finance Committee. But what we have not used as a criterion, but I am awaiting the feedback from the members of Legislative Council, particularly the pan-democratic members, is so-called ˇ§controversyˇ¨, because to us we feel all the items are justified, all the items are for public interest, but I understand that some pan-democratic members have some very strong views on individual items. So if they take a very strong stance, that if this controversial item is going to be put at the earlier part of the agenda, they will resort to filibustering or asking lots of questions, and as a result of which we might not be able to complete deliberations on the rest of the non-controversial items, then we are now taking a very practical approach. We want to adjust the priority of these items to ensure that we could have as many items passed as possible.

     So, to answer your question, if we are very forthcoming and we are going to give favourable consideration to the feedback I'm going to receive from the Legislative Council members, then I hope the frequency of filibustering in the Legislative Council meetings as well as the Finance Committee meetings will be much reduced.

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

Ends/Friday, March 18, 2016
Issued at HKT 17:29


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