High Tide (May 30th 2015) – Daily Political Round-up

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ITB back on agenda; Pan-dems’ separate meeting with CY Leung’s presence; 18 ordered into quarantine on MERS reports. Photo Credit: Chris Lusher


Politics (Gov’t & LegCo)

ITB back on the agenda.
– Lawmakers discussed (in Chinese) the establishment of Innovation & Technology Bureau in the LegCo meeting
– People Power’s Albert Chan and Raymond Chan have moved a total of 32 amendments, called for quorums and moved a motion to adjourn the debate (negatived)
– IT lawmaker Charles Mok reiterated his supportive stance toward the establishment of the new bureau, but slammed the Government for failing to persuade pan-dem lawmakers
– Lawmakers will continue to debate on the motion on Wednesday
– Meanwhile, the Finance Committee adjourned (in Chinese) upon the debate on funding the construction works of the Liantang/Heung Yuen Wai boundary control point

Pan-dems to meet Beijing Officials separately, with the presence of CY Leung.
– It was reported (in Chinese) that the meeting between lawmakers and Beijing officials will be hosted by Chief Secretary Carrie Lam and divided into two sessions
– CY Leung and LegCo president Jasper Tsang will be present throughout the whole meeting, including the second session which is meant to be a separate discussion among the 15 pan-dem attendants and the three Beijing officials
– Meanwhile, League of Social Democrats’ Leung Kwok-hung, like student activist Joshua Wong before him, was denied entry into Malaysia when planning to attend talks on the June 4th massacre
– Secretary for Security Lai Tung-kwok said, “we respect and we do not intervene in decisions made by immigration authorities in accordance with their law”

Ko Wing-man: Searching out passengers on the same flight with MERS patient the priority.
– Secretary for Food and Health Ko Wing-man said the authorities will continue its vigilance to prevent the outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS, also called the ‘new SARS’)
– A Korean man who entered China through Hong Kong has been confirmed as the country’s first MERS patient
– Ko said the most important thing right now is to search out those identified as close contacts with the concerned patient while 18 people have been ordered into quarantine so far

Gregory So to visit Germany and France.
– Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Gregory So will depart on May 31 for Berlin and France in a seven-day duty visit
– So will attend the Ministerial Council Meeting of the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and a World Trade Organisation informal ministerial meeting in Paris

Politics (general)

MTR fees raised by 4.3% albeit with holiday discounts.
– The MTR Corp announced that it will raised its ticket fees by an average of 4.3% starting from June 21st, which would see the company’s profit increased by HKD600 million
– Spokesperson of the railway conglomerate said the increase would be 50 cents or less per trip for about 80% of the passengers
– It will offer a 50% discount on adult tickets on six dates including the Christmas, Chinese New Year and Easter holidays
– It was estimated that more than 300,000 tourists and residents were benefited from free rides on trams and two Star Ferry routes as the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 154th anniversary

Licence renewal for nursery home in elderly abuse scandal set to be refused – half.
– The Social Welfare Department stated its intention to refuse licence renewal of a care home in Tai Po in the abuse scandal, which is set to expire tomorrow
– Meanwhile, it was found that the premise holds two licences, one for operations on 2nd and 3rd floors and one for operations on ground and first floor
– The licence which is set to expire is the former one while it was in the latter area where the scandal was spotted