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Latest progress of Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge
     In response to media enquiries on the latest progress of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB), the Transport and Housing Bureau (THB) gave the following reply today (November 21):
     The construction of the Main Bridge of the HZMB, which is financed by the Mainland, Hong Kong and Macau and is constructed by the HZMB Authority, is progressing well. At the moment, the bridge section and the subsea tunnel section of the HZMB Main Bridge have been connected while the furnishing works of the tunnel interior and roads, the furnishing works of the buildings on the artificial islands, the road works and the traffic control works are in progress.
     As regards the construction works of the HZMB Main Bridge, the THB reported to the Legislative Council (LegCo) Panel on Transport in February and October this year that since the commencement of the Main Bridge project which is situated in Mainland waters, there had been escalation in the construction costs arising from the increase in labour and material costs as well as the refinement of the design and construction schemes. As a result, the contractors submitted applications to the HZMB Authority for adjustment to the project estimate. 
     The HZMB Authority has reviewed the applications submitted by the contractors and prepared a report on the adjustment of the project estimate. The relevant Mainland Authorities have submitted the report on the adjustment of the project estimate to the State Council. According to our understanding, the cost overrun of the Main Bridge may be around RMB10 billion.
     At the time when the HZMB Main Bridge was approved, the three sides agreed that the construction cost would be financed by the three sides and by borrowing from banks by the HZMB Authority. It is expected that the apportionment of the additional capital cost arising from the cost overrun of the Main Bridge will follow the above principle as stipulated at the time when the project was approved, i.e. it will be partly financed by the three sides and the remaining sum will be financed by borrowing from the banks by the HZMB Authority. We will report to the LegCo the detailed arrangement, including the amount to be financed by the Hong Kong side, after the cost overrun of the Main Bridge is confirmed. We will also seek LegCo's approval for the required additional funding.
     Furthermore, at the HZMB Joint Works Committee meeting on November 7, 2017, the meeting discussed in detail the commissioning date of the HZMB. The three sides agreed to make their best endeavours to overcome the difficulties and challenges so as to achieve the target of completing the major construction works of the Main Bridge and the ports by the end of 2017, and will continue to improve the clearance conditions of the ports. The commissioning date of the HZMB will be ascertained by the Central Task Force and will be announced once confirmed.
     Spanning over Lingdingyang, the HZMB, an unprecedented mega transport infrastructure project co-built by Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau, will connect the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in the east and the Macau Special Administrative Region and Zhuhai City of Guangdong province in the west (see Annex). The entire HZMB project consists of two parts: (1) the HZMB Main Bridge (i.e. a 22.9-kilometre-long bridge and a 6.7km-long subsea tunnel) situated in Mainland waters which is being taken forward by the HZMB Authority, and (ii) the link roads and boundary crossing facilities under the respective responsibility of the three governments.
Ends/Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Issued at HKT 16:00
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