The Financial Secretary, Mr Henry Tang, visited various parts of Lantau during the weekend.
Accompanied by the District Planning Officer (Lantau and Islands), Ms Phyllis Li, Mr Tang visited Tung Chung, Mui Wo, Cheung Sha, Shek Pik, Tai O, Siu Ho Wan and Tai Ho Wan.
"The Lantau Island is well recognised for its tremendous development potentials as well as its nature conservation and recreation values," said Mr Tang, who is the Chairman of the Lantau Development Task Force.
Mr Tang said: "We would like to develop with the public together a development framework for Lantau which will strike a delicate balance between economic development on one hand, and conservation of the island's beautiful nature and valuable cultural heritage on the other."
The Lantau Development Task Force will launch a three-month public consultation tomorrow (November 29) to solicit views on the Concept Plan for Lantau.
"The concept plan aims to provide a coherent planning framework to meet a diversity of land use needs. In formulating the plan, the task force has adopted a balanced and sustainable planning approach integrating both development and conservation needs," a spokesman of the task force said.
"The concept plan has initially identified a few key development themes and proposals for community discussion. They include economic infrastructure and tourism proposals to enhance Hong Kong's economic competitiveness, theme attractions based on heritage, local character and natural landscape, maximising the recreation potential of country parks, and meeting nature conservation needs to achieve balanced planning," he added.
"The proposals put up for public consultation are conceptual in nature for community discussion at this stage. Comments and suggestions from members of the public are most welcome, and they will be fully taken into account in firming up the concept plan," he said.
The public consultation will last till February 28, 2005. Briefings will be arranged for the relevant statutory and advisory bodies, the rural committees and other local organisations, professional institutes, green groups, and the infrastructure, tourism, leisure and recreation sectors. Two public forums, one for the general public and another for the Lantau community, will also be organised.
Members of the public are invited to send their views to the Lantau Development Task Force via Lantau and Islands District Planning Office, 15/F, Shatin Government Offices, 1 Sheung Wo Che Road, Shatin by post, by fax 2890 5194 or via e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consultation digests and leaflets will be available from the Public Enquiry Counter of the Planning Department at 17/F, North Point Government Offices and Public Enquiry Services Centres of District Offices starting tomorrow. Details of the consultation can also be viewed on the Planning Department website at http://www.pland.gov.hk/.
Pursuant to the 2004 Policy Address, the Lantau Development Task Force, chaired by the Financial Secretary, was set up in February 2004 to provide a high-level policy steer on the economic and infrastructure development in Lantau. As a start, the task force has drawn up the Concept Plan for Lantau. The Legislative Council Panel on Planning, Lands and Works was briefed on the concept plan on October 26, 2004.
Ends/Sunday, November 28, 2004