High Tide (December 22nd 2015) – Daily political round up

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Govt considers allowing lawmakers to read sensitive rail agreement; Six arrested over LegCo bin blast.

Photo: Chris Lusher


Government & LegCo

Government considers allowing lawmakers to read ‘sensitive’ rail agreement
– During a LegCo meeting on which party should be held responsible for the delay of the high-speed rail link, Secretary for Transport and Housing Anthony Cheung said the Government would consider allowing lawmakers to obtain details about the pact it signed with the MTR Corp
– Cheung admitted that the Government should have done better in supervising the MTR Corp’s works but reiterated that the agreement would not be terminated
– Meanwhile, CY Leung, before departing for Beijing to report to mainland’s top officials, said co-location arrangements for the rail link were necessary and must be achieved

Environment chief proposes raising various construction waste disposal charges
– Secretary for the Environment Wong Kam-sing said at a LegCo Panel on Environmental Affairs meeting that the administration plans to raise the various construction waste disposal charges (ch) relating to public fill reception facilities, landfills and sorting facilities
– Under the new plan, a public fill charge will be raised from HKD27 per tonne to HKD71 per tonne, while a sorting charge and a landfill charge will increase by 75% and 60% respectively

Politics (General)

Six men arrested over LegCo bin blast
– Six men, among them four Hong Kong tertiary students were arrested for allegedly participated in a plot that set a rubbish bin outside the LegCo building on fire in an arson incident
– The plot took place on Dec 9 when people gathered in Admiralty in protest of the copyright amendment bill
– Among the arrested included members of a pro-Hong Kong independence group named Valiant Frontier (ch)

Pro-business parties call for measures to cope with shrinking travel industry
– The pro-business Liberal Party and the Business and Professionals Alliance for Hong Kong (BPA) met with Financial Secretary John Tsang in separate meetings to express concerns over a shrinking travel and retail industry (ch)
– The two parties urged the authorities to suspend licence fees for travel agencies, restaurants and hawkers for a year

New moderate pro-democracy groups trash talks on merger
– Two newly established political groups with similar moderate pro-democracy stances, namely Third Side and Path of Democracy, dismissed a report (ch) by a mysterious new online media Kin Liu (‘authentic source’ in Chinese) that the two were in talks of a possible merger
– Both groups trashed the report and stated that no negotiation of such was underway
– The Third Side was established by former democrats Tik Chi-yuen and Nelson Wong while the Path of Democracy was formed by former Civic Party member Ronny Tong