Q1 Quota-free scheme for Hong Kong private cars travelling to Guangdong
MR CHAN CHUN-YING (in Cantonese):
President, the convenience brought about by implementing the Scheme for Hong Kong cars travelling to Guangdong at HZMB is believed to be somewhat attractive to members of the public travelling to Zhuhai, Zhongshan and the western part of Guangdong, etc. Yet, it is obviously against economic principles for members of the public travelling to Shenzhen, Dongguan, Huizhou and the eastern part of Guangdong, because apart from having to pay RMB300, the journey is also more tortuous, requiring extra time and cost. On the other hand, Shenzhen has a relatively comprehensive highway network. From the perspective of facilitating the public to travel to Guangdong, the Shenzhen Bay Port should be a more suitable location than HZMB.President, the Secretary mentioned in his main reply that the Government would proactively study the extension of the Scheme for Hong Kong cars travelling to Guangdong to another Hong Kong/Shenzhen land boundary control point after the Scheme had been operated at HZMB for a period of time. Does this port refer to the Shenzhen Bay Port? If so, can the implementation schedule be expedited?
SECRETARY FOR TRANSPORT AND HOUSING (in Cantonese):
President, both the governments of Hong Kong and Guangdong will proactively study the opening up of another Hong Kong/Shenzhen boundary control point after the Scheme for Hong Kong cars travelling to Guangdong has been operated at HZMB for a period of time. We hope that the travel area covered by the Scheme will bring the greatest possible convenience to Hong Kong people. I believe the relevant coverage will provide greater convenience to Hong Kong people if the so-called principle of “East-in-East-out, West-in-West-out” is adopted.
Given that there is still some time before the Scheme for Hong Kong cars travelling to Guangdong can be implemented at HZMB, we hope to draw on the implementation experience of the Scheme at HZMB before deciding on the next boundary control point where the policy will be implemented. Our considerations include: First, the convenience of the location; second, the connectivity of the location; third, the acceptability of the location to Hong Kong people travelling to Guangdong. Detailed studies will be conducted on these aspects. Of course, Members can put forward their views, if any, to us and we will also consider them during the process. We have not yet come to a decision at this moment. We also need to communicate and confirm with Guangdong Province. This is an agreement between the two parties after all, it is thus not appropriate for us to make an announcement unilaterally even if we have some views. However, I can tell Mr CHAN that we have yet to make a decision at this point of time, and discussion with Guangdong Province is still necessary.