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SCA: Turnout rate will exceed that of 2000

Following is the transcript (English portion) of a standup briefing given by the Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Stephen Lam, at the Legislative Council Election Press Centre at the Hong Kong International Trade and Exhibition Centre in Kowloon Bay shortly after 5pm today(September 12):

Reporter: First of all, are you satisfied with the turnout so far? The ballot boxes are filled up fairly quickly. How are you coping with it? Are you able to cope with it?

SCA: The voter turnout rate so far in the last eight to nine hours has basically surpassed that of 2000. The figure that I have by 4.30pm is that over 990,000 voters have already cast their votes. The overall turnout rate is 30.88 per cent. The turnout rate and participation rate so far have basically surpassed that of 2000. So we believe that the overall turnout rate for the third term Legislative Council election will exceed that of 43.5 per cent for the election in 2000.

As for the availability of ballot boxes, the Registration and Electoral Office has always had a backup stock of ballot boxes available. These are being delivered to those polling stations which require backup and the arrangements are being made now throughout this afternoon.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Sunday, September 12, 2004