Following is a question by the Hon Audrey Eu and a written reply by the Secretary for Constitutional Affairs, Mr Stephen Lam, in the Legislative Council today (June 9):
Will the Government inform this Council:
(a) of the respective numbers of individual and corporate electors who have registered for various functional constituencies so far; and
(b) whether it has assessed if the concept of "balanced participation" referred to in the Second Report of the Constitutional Development Task Force can be put into practice with such numbers of electors; if it has, of the assessment results?
(a) According to the 2003 Final Register, the number of individuals registered as electors for the Legislative Council (LegCo) functional constituencies (FC) was 147 266. The corresponding number of corporate bodies registered as FC electors was 13 036. Details are set out in Annex. This year's voter registration campaign ended on May 16. The latest statistics on registered
electors will be reflected in the Provisional Register which is to be compiled and published by the Electoral Registration Officer not later than June 15, 2004 in accordance with the Legislative Council Ordinance (LCO).
(b) As pointed out in paragraph 5.18 of the Second Report of the Constitutional Development Task Force, "[w]hen submitting the Basic Law (Draft) and related documents at the Third Session of the Seventh National People's Congress on March 28, 1990, Director Ji Pengfei explained that, with regard to the political structure of the HKSAR, consideration must be given to the interests
of the different sectors of society. As seen from the history of Hong Kong's economic development, its economic prosperity is largely attributable to the joint efforts of the trade and industrial sectors, the middle class, professionals, the working class and other sectors of society." The existing 28 FCs, which are established in accordance with the Basic Law and the LCO, cover
the above sectors of society, and are conducive to realizing the principle of "meeting the interests of the different sectors of society".
As regards how the methods for selecting the Chief Executive in 2007 and for forming the LegCo in 2008 may be amended, the Constitutional Development Task Force published its Third Report on May 11, and has started to listen to the views of different sectors of society. We welcome views from the community on whether the existing number and delimitation of the FCs may be changed,
and how the delineation and size of the eligible electorate of FCs may be suitably broadened, with a view to enhancing further the broad representativeness of the FCs and enabling more members of the community to have the opportunity to participate in public affairs.
Ends/Wednesday, June 9, 2004