Council meeting-Report on exam. of Estimates of Expenditure 2023-24

Finance Committee—Report on the examination of the Estimates of Expenditure 2023-2024


President, in my capacity as the Chairman of the Finance Committee, I submit its Report on the examination of the Estimates of Expenditure 2023-2024.

The Finance Committee held a total of 21 sessions of special meetings in mid-April this year to examine the Estimates of Expenditure 2023-2024, with the aim to ensure that the authorities are seeking a provision no more than necessary for the execution of the policies approved.

Before the commencement of the special meetings, 88 Members submitted about 3 500 written questions on the Estimates of Expenditure, with a relatively larger number of questions related to health, welfare, education, culture, sports and tourism, as well as innovation and technology and industry.  As undertaken, the Administration submitted replies to the first 3 300 questions before the special meetings.  As for the remaining written questions and the supplementary questions raised by Members during the special meetings, the Administration’s replies were submitted before the third Budget meeting of the Legislative Council (“LegCo”) on 3 May 2023.  All questions and replies were uploaded onto the LegCo website.

During the special meetings, Members raised questions on the Estimates of Expenditure and expressed concerns and views on measures which are closely related to people’s livelihood, such as housing, education, healthcare and how to stimulate the economy, referred to in the Budget.  The verbatim record of proceedings of the special meetings is set out in the report.

Following the passage of the Appropriation Bill 2023 on 3 May 2023, the Finance Committee started to examine the funding requests submitted by the Administration for changing the approved Estimates of Expenditure.

President, the Finance Committee spent approximately 32 hours in total to complete the examination of the Estimates of Expenditure and the process was smooth in general.  In this regard, I would like to extend my gratitude to Members for their enthusiastic participation and to the various Policy Bureaux and departments of the Government for their cooperation.

I so submit.