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Commission on Poverty convenes 22nd meeting in its second term
     The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, chaired the 22nd meeting of the Commission on Poverty (CoP) in its second term this afternoon (February 10).

     At the meeting, Mr Cheung first thanked members for their support for the CoP's work. He also pointed out that the 2017 Policy Address has incorporated as far as possible members' views expressed in past meetings. He and relevant government officials then briefed members on the various poverty alleviation and retirement protection initiatives put forward in the 2017 Policy Address. These initiatives include inviting the Community Care Fund to consider implementing six new assistance programmes; strengthening support for various disadvantaged groups including children with special needs, persons with disabilities and ex-mentally ill persons; supporting ageing in place; and injecting extra funding into the Community Investment and Inclusion Fund to facilitate community involvement. Members discussed the above initiatives and expressed views on the proposals of enhancing the social security pillar for retirement protection and progressively abolishing the "offsetting" mechanism under the Mandatory Provident Fund (MPF) System.

     Mr Cheung expressed gratitude for members' views. He emphasised that the retirement protection package seeks to strengthen the existing multi-pillar retirement protection system to provide comprehensive protection for elderly persons. Subject to the Legislative Council's funding approval, the Government will implement the enhancements to the Old Age Living Allowance and medical services as soon as possible. As for progressively abolishing the MPF "offsetting" arrangement, the Government will listen to the views of businesses, trade unions and other stakeholders, and aims to submit a finalised proposal to the Executive Council for a decision by the end of June this year.
Ends/Friday, February 10, 2017
Issued at HKT 19:51
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