Fourth industrial estate to be considered
The government will consider the feasibility of developing a fourth industrial estate. Financial chief John Tsang Chun-wah said the government was reviewing the mix of industries at the three existing industrial estates in Tai Po, Tseung Kwan O and Yuen Long. A study expected to be completed in September will also explore future market opportunities, including the introduction of new industries, to ensure industrial estates develop with the times and bring the best economic benefits.
Cantonese opera venues and training to get cash boost
Some HK$20 million will be injected into the Cantonese Opera Development Fund. The money will subsidise venues and provide training programmes. An annual Cantonese opera day will be organised by the governments of Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Guangzhou. Up to HK$33 million will be set aside for the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, the Arts Development Council and the Academy of Performing Arts.
HK$20m to help East Asian Games athletes
A total of HK$20 million will be allocated to help athletes prepare for the East Asian Games this year. The funds will be used to subsidise expenses for those taking part in events overseas before the event and to buy equipment. A further HK$50 million will be injected into the Sir David Trench Fund for Recreation to finance new facilities and equipment for district and national sports associations in the next three to four years to support community sports. A total of HK$78 million has also been earmarked to promote the Games and for activities on the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
Child care project to be extended
The pilot Neighbourhood Support Child Care Project will be extended. The current programme covers six districts: Tung Chung, Sham Shui Po, Kwai Chung, Tuen Mun, Yuen Long and Kwun Tong. It encourages neighbours to take care of each other's young children, which the government believes can foster a closer community and provide more flexible child care.
Homes for elderly funding to rise
Additional recurrent funding of about HK$37 million is provided to residential care homes taking care of infirm elderly people and those with dementia. In addition, the government will increase recurrent funding by about HK$55 million to provide 650 additional subsidised residential care places. And HK$10 million will be used to establish an Elder Academy Development Foundation to promote lifelong learning among senior citizens.
Fight against violence in home
To further support families in need and victims of domestic violence, an additional recurrent funding of about HK$25 million has been allocated to increase the number of social workers and clinical psychologists dealing with domestic violence.
Women's study scheme to expand
A total of HK$20 million will be allocated in the coming three years to expand the Capacity Building Mileage Programme. The programme, launched by the Women's Commission in 2004, encourages women to pursue lifelong learning and develop a positive mindset and outlook on life.
Investment in events
Up to HK$100 million will be on offer for organisers of arts, cultural and sports activities to help them host more attractive events over the coming three years. The government hopes this can further promote Hong Kong as an Asian events capital.
Library hours to increase
The 33 major public libraries will extend their opening times from six to seven days a week from April. The government said this would give people more chance to use libraries and cultivate a reading habit.
Online learning gets HK$63m
Some HK$63 million is earmarked to step up internet education. The initiative will be tied to summer and academic programmes during the school year of 2009-10 for secondary and primary pupils.