Second term of Lantau Development Advisory Committee holds first meeting

At its first meeting held today (April 23), the second term of the Lantau Development Advisory Committee (LanDAC) was given an overview by the Government of the public engagement (PE) exercise for the proposed development strategy for Lantau and the latest developments of the various major strategic studies, short-term studies and district improvement works.

The Secretary for Development and Chairman of the LanDAC, Mr Paul Chan, said, "Four non-official members from the environment and conservation, recreation and tourism, innovation and technology, and aviation sectors have been appointed for this new term of office to work together with other members in providing suggestions for developing Lantau into a smart and low-carbon community for living, work, business, leisure and study."

The LanDAC discussed the work plan for this year. It also agreed to establish the following three subcommittees and launch the relevant work expeditiously:

1) Public Relations and Promotion Subcommittee: to assist in analysing the opinions gathered during the PE exercise and in preparing the PE Report, and to organise promotional activities;

2) Sustainable Development Subcommittee: to assist in work relating to aspects of planning, development, conservation, recreation and tourism, for promoting the balance amongst economic development, social development and environmental conservation in order to achieve the goal of sustainable development of Lantau; and

3) Traffic, Transport and District Improvement Items Subcommittee: to assist in the exploration and planning of appropriate traffic and transport arrangements, and local and village improvement items.

The LanDAC was also briefed on the various promotional and consultation work that took place during the PE exercise on Lantau Development. The activities included a consultation with the Panel on Development of the Legislative Council (LegCo); a roving exhibition at 16 spots around the territory; 11 consultation meetings with the 18 District Councils, Heung Yee Kuk and four Rural Committees on Lantau; three large-scale public forums with more than 850 participants; five focus group meetings covering sectors such as environment and conservation, recreation, sports, tourism, professional institutions, commerce, social development and youth; and briefing sessions for various groups and organisations. Representatives were also sent to meetings and forums conducted by various organisations. In addition, more than 80 members of the public expressed their views on the proposed development strategy for Lantau at a special meeting of the LegCo Panel on Development on April 16. The LegCo Secretariat received 140 written submissions from those who were not able to attend the meeting.

"We have received a large number of views on multiple aspects from the public. There are views for and against our proposals. Some urge for more detailed assessment studies, such as studies on Lantau's traffic and transport infrastructure and its carrying capacity, while some request the formulation of more detailed conservation measures and timely improvement of various infrastructures in the rural areas, etc.," said Mr Chan.

"Since all these suggestions involve a great deal of work to be done in a short period of time, we propose to increase our manpower by setting up a multi-disciplinary and dedicated office as soon as possible. I hope that this proposal will be supported by members of the LegCo Panel on Development at its meeting next week, so that we can start our work immediately, seizing the development and conservation opportunities on Lantau and bringing benefits to Hong Kong people."

In his concluding remarks, Mr Chan said, "We will earnestly review, analyse and consolidate all the public opinions received. We expect to announce the Blueprint for Lantau Development at the end of this year, setting a broad timetable for the various studies and projects."

Ends/Saturday, April 23, 2016
Issued at HKT 15:59