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TAC briefed on proposed Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme
The following is issued on behalf of the Transport Advisory Committee:

     The Transport Advisory Committee (TAC) was briefed today (October 26) on the proposed Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme.

     Members noted that the Government proposed to introduce a non-means tested Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme to relieve the fare burden on those commuters with higher monthly public transport expenses. Under the Scheme, commuters with monthly public transport expenses exceeding $400 are eligible for a public transport fare subsidy, regardless of their age and income level. The subsidy will amount to 25 per cent of the actual public transport expenses in excess of $400, subject to a maximum of $300 per month.

     The TAC Chairman, Mr Larry Kwok, said, "Members welcome the Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme proposed by the Government. The Scheme can improve people's livelihood by relieving the fare burden of commuters who travel frequently by public transport in Hong Kong. Members note that the Scheme is simple and convenient and commuters do not have to apply for the Scheme. Based on the Government's current proposal, it is anticipated that over two million commuters will benefit from the Scheme."

     It is understood by the TAC members that the monthly public transport expenses under the Government's initial proposal will include fares of MTR, franchised buses, green minibuses, ferries and trams paid by Octopus cards, and the expenses on monthly/day passes of these public transport services purchased by any payment method. During the specific period in each month, commuters can collect the public transport fare subsidy for the previous month through the Octopus app or dedicated Octopus readers at designated locations (including MTR stations and Octopus Service Points). The subsidy will be automatically credited to Octopus cards by tapping the card on a dedicated Octopus reader.

     Mr Kwok said, "Members learned that the Government notes that some sectors of the public are of the view that red minibuses and non-franchised buses providing residents' services should be included in the Scheme. The Government will consider the views when studying and finalising the details of the Scheme."
Ends/Thursday, October 26, 2017
Issued at HKT 17:45
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