Following is a question by the Hon Lau Ping-cheung and a written reply by the Secretary for Planning and Lands, Mr John C Tsang, in the Legislative Council today (April 10):
In reply to a Member's question raised at the Council meeting on 30 January this year, the Administration indicated that the Planning Department would commission a consultancy study to comprehensively review land use in the New Territories. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:
(a) whether the consultant will be engaged through open recruitment;
(b) of the commencement and completion dates of the study; and
(c) of the detailed scope of the study, and whether it will include the compilation and verification of geographical co-ordinates for land boundary; if not, of the reasons for that?
(a) To improve the existing land use planning and management practices in the rural New Territories, the Planning Department has recently commenced the Study on Rural Planning and Land Management. The study comprises two stages. Stage 1 is an in-house study carried out by the Planning Department. Stage 2 of the Study will be conducted by consultants engaged through open recruitment.
(b) Stage 1 of the Study has commenced in March 2002 and is expected to complete in 12 months' time. The entire study (including both Stage 1 and Stage 2) is expected to complete in around mid-2004.
(c) The Study aims to formulate a rural land use planning and management strategy, with the objective of improving the rural environment and utilising the rural land resources through suitable development and land management. The compilation and verification of geographical co-ordinates for land boundary is primarily a technical task in land surveying and mapping. It has no direct relationship with the study on planning and land management strategy and hence does not fall within the scope of the Study.
The scope of the Study includes:
* to examine the existing practices on planning and management of land in the rural New Territories;
* to examine the rural land management problems, the causes of these problems, and explore the approaches to resolving the problems; and
* to explore possible options for better planning and management of the rural environment by drawing references from international and local experiences.
* to formulate a rural land planning and management strategy and implementation framework for the purpose of improving the rural environment; and
* to formulate pilot schemes for assessing the effectiveness of the planning and management strategy as well as the implementation framework.
End/Wednesday, April 10, 2002