Donald Tsang

SDB looking for an extra $12 million

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 12 March, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 12 March, 1997, 12:00am

The Sports Development Board is hoping for an extra $12 million from the Government to help finance the development programmes of various national associations.

It is understood that SDB officials will be listening to financial secretary Donald Tsang's budget speech today for signs of further funding.

The Government has already made available $300 million for the SDB and the Arts Development Council (ADC) to share, depending on needs, over the next four years. The hoped for $12 million is expected to be independent of the $300 million, which is earmarked to fulfil the goals set out in the SDB's and ADC's respected strategic plans.

It is believed that the $12 million would be used solely to make up the shortfall that currently exists to help sports associations carry out their programmes for the next financial year.

SDB chief executive Andrew Ma declined to confirm whether or not the Government will provide the SDB with an extra $12 million, but according to reports, Tsang will make an announcement today during his speech.

Ma, meanwhile, said that the SDB has asked the Government to define clearly how the $300 million is to be shared between the sports funding arm and the ADC.

When the Broadcasting, Culture and Sports branch announced a $300 million distribution to sport and the arts in January, it said the money would sit in a fund and both bodies would be able to apply for cash when it was needed.

However, the branch was unable to say how much each body would receive.

Ma said the SDB this month asked the branch to split the money 40-40 between sport and the arts, with the remaining 20 per cent forming a floating fund to be used by either body as required.

'Our proposal is for the government to agree to a 40-40 split,' said Ma. 'That way, we would at least know how much we can play with and help with forward planning.

'That is the key issue. There would still be 20 per cent flexibility for both parties.'