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Consultation Forums on Working Hours Policy Directions

The following is issued on behalf of the Standard Working Hours Committee:

     The Standard Working Hours Committee (SWHC) is conducting the Consultation on Working Hours Policy Directions for three months to collect views on working hours policy directions for the SWHC's reference in preparing its report to the Government.

     During the consultation period, the SWHC will organise various forms of consultation activity. In addition to meetings with major employers' and labour associations as well as other consultation activities, the SWHC will convene two consultation forums for, among others, persons engaged in the relatively long-working-hours sectors, and four district-based forums for the general public. For details, please refer to the Appendix. Members of the public interested in attending these forums can now register by telephone (3586 8098), fax (2110 1527) or email ( Each registered person can reserve up to two seats on a first-come-first, served basis.

     The Chairperson of the SWHC, Dr Leong Che-hung said, "As working hours policy closely concerns employees and employers of various trades and occupations, I appeal to the community and general public to grasp this opportunity to actively express views by attending the consultation forums and/or sending in written submissions before the end of the consultation period on July 24, 2016."

     Dr Leong added, "In 2014, the SWHC conducted an extensive first-stage consultation and an in-depth working hours survey, and examined a range of economic and social factors relating to the working hours policy. With reference to the findings of the above work, and through an evidence-based approach, the SWHC has in principle agreed to explore a legislative approach to mandatorily require employers and employees to enter into written employment contracts, which shall include the specified working hours terms, such as overtime compensation arrangements (the 'big frame'); and to explore, on the premise of the 'big frame', whether there is a need for other suitable measures (e.g. setting a working hours standard and an overtime pay rate) to further protect grassroots employees with lower income, lower skills and less bargaining power (the 'small frame'). Unlike the first-stage consultation held in 2014 which was of a general nature, this consultation is comprehensive and directional, aiming to collect views of the public on the following four working hours policy directions under exploration:

(i) only implementing the 'big frame';
(ii) only implementing the 'small frame';
(iii) on the premise of implementing the 'big frame', to implement the 'small frame' as well; and
(iv) not to implement the 'big frame' or the 'small frame', but recommend implementing other policies/ measures pertaining to working hours (e.g. formulating voluntary guidelines according to the needs of individual sectors)."

     For further information about this consultation, please visit the SWHC website ( to browse the full consultation document, pamphlet and PowerPoint presentation. The consultation document and pamphlet can also be obtained from the Public Enquiry Service Centres of the Home Affairs Department, as well as Job Centres, Industry-based Recruitment Centres, Youth Employment Start and district offices of the Labour Relations Division of the Labour Department.

     Chaired by Dr Leong, the SWHC comprises members drawn from the labour and business sectors, academia, the community and the Government. For details, please refer to the SWHC website (

Ends/Monday, May 16, 2016
Issued at HKT 11:56


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