HIGH TIDE (MARCH 20TH 2015) – DAILY POLITICAL ROUND-UP

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LegCo urges middle-class growth; Gov’t says TV debate on reform “unnecessary”; Guangdong plans on visa cap. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher


 

Politics (Government &LegCo)

LegCo passes motion to enhance middle-class growth.
– Lawmakers passed a motion moved by BPA’s Andrew Leung and amended by Health Services Joseph Lee to expand the ratio of middle-class population
– It was agreed that the Government should formulate policies and measures to further upward social mobility through job opportunities and start-ups
– The LegCo has also approved increasing the minimum wage from HKD30 to HKD32.5 starting from 1st May
– Pan-dems meanwhile blocked a motion moved by DAB’s Ip Kwok-him to relax a rule on disclosing personal pecuniary interest in any LegCo committee and subcommittee

Police to adopt a stricter approach against “suspicious” gathering.
– It is reported that the Police has instructed its staff to enforce public order law more strictly to prevent any suspicious gathering of at least three people from turning into a protest
– The “preventive” instruction is meant to tackle recent anti-parallel trading protests which have gone mobile and violent

Diplomat

Le French May meets press.
– The press conference of cultural event Le French May 2015 was hosted on Wednesday by the French Consul-General Mr Arnaud Barthelemy, Chairman of the Board of Le French May Mr Andrew Yuen
– Also present were the Undersecretary for Home Affairs Florence Hui, Steward of the HK Jockey Club Michael Lee and Le French May 2015 Ambassador Karena Lam

Politics (general)

Pan-dems challenge CY Leung to a TV debate on political reform.
– Civic Party’s Alan Leong is responding positively to a TV debate between CY Leung and the Pan-dems on political reform proposed by Prof Albert Chen
– Secretary for Constitutional & Mainland Affairs Raymond Tam, however, has described that the call as a mere “gimmicks” and said a debate may not be necessary

HT Special: CDNIS Head of School explains stance on Youtube.
– Head of School of the troubled CDNIS Gregg Maloberti has sent a message to parents to explain his stance in recent row over the school’s personnel changes
– The Head has uploaded five video clips on Youtube and said there will be more to come

China & World

Guangdong authorities to consider tightening cross-boundary visas.
– Mainland authorities is planning to limit the multiple-entry visa to Hong Kong through imposing a cap of two visits a day per person as proposed by an academic at Guangzhou’s Sun Yat-sen University
– DAB’s Ip Kwok-him said cross-border students and parents should be exempted from the proposal
– Tourism lawmaker Yiu Si-wing worried that the cap is too loose to have any impact on the parallel-trading problem
– Chris Yeung wrote on HT today – Is CY Leung’s “inner diplomacy” strategy working?