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Expert Group meets on Hong Kong/Guangdong town planning (with photo)

The Expert Group on Hong Kong/Guangdong Town Planning and Development, set up under the Hong Kong/Guangdong Co-operation Joint Conference, held its third meeting in Hong Kong today (December 20).

At the meeting, the Hong Kong and Guangdong sides reviewed the progress of the "Planning Study on the Co-ordinated Development of the Greater Pearl River Delta Township" (Greater PRD Planning Study), the co-operation agreement of which was signed at the second meeting held in Zhuhai last year.

"The Greater PRD Planning Study is one of the important programmes on the co-operation agenda between Guangdong and Hong Kong. It is also the first attempt by Guangdong and Hong Kong to jointly conduct a strategic regional study on town planning front," a government spokesman said.

"The objective of the study is to formulate a regional development strategy for the Greater PRD region by taking a forward-looking perspective to consider and analyse the development approach of various cities within the region under the 'One Country Two Systems' framework," the spokesman said.

Since it began at the end of March this year, the study consultants, i.e. the Peking University and the Guangdong Urban & Rural Planning and Design Institute, have proactively gathered views of town planning experts, academics and various stakeholders and solicited input from relevant government departments of both sides and Macau. The study is scheduled for completion in early 2008.

The Expert Group was satisfied with the progress of the study. Relevant details of the study have been uploaded to the website of the Hong Kong's Planning Department (http://www.pland.gov.hk) for public inspection.

Both sides shared their experiences of town planning work at the meeting. While the Guangzhou, Zhuhai and Shenzhen planning authorities introduced their latest planning strategies and city developments, Hong Kong's Planning Department presented to the Expert Group the pedestrian planning projects in Hong Kong.

After the meeting, Mainland delegates visited some planning and construction projects in Hong Kong, including the Cyberport, the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department Headquarters and the existing pedestrian walkway system in Central.

The meeting was co-chaired by Hong Kong's Permanent Secretary for Housing, Planning and Lands, Mrs Rita Lau and the Deputy Director of the Guangdong Provincial Department of Construction, Mr Fang Qing Fang. Mr Tang Kai, the Director General of the Department of Urban & Rural Planning, the Ministry of Construction, attended the meeting as a special guest.

Ends/Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Issued at HKT 18:15

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