Utility giants offer to open up

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 08 June, 1994, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 08 June, 1994, 12:00am

PUBLIC utility companies will not be forced to disclose more information about their operations, according to the Government.

Only one major utility company, China Motor Bus, has refused to join a voluntary scheme of disclosure, the Secretary for Economic Services, Gordon Siu Kwing-chue, has told legislators.

Seventeen companies have taken part in the scheme, which aims to enhance their openness and public accountability.

''I am confident that by continual persuasion and encouragement, more companies will be willing to follow and comply with the scheme,'' said Mr Siu.

The 17 include companies providing bus, tram, ferry, telecommunication, tunnel or airport services.

The list of information they release includes their profit-and-loss accounts, assets and service conditions.

Mr Siu said six had given information in the form of annual reports or booklets and the others had agreed to complete their report by September this year.

Legislator Lau Chin-shek said the scheme was inadequate because it did not require companies to make detailed disclosure, as they did for assessment of any fare rise requests.

He also urged the Government to make clear under what circumstances information could be classified as sensitive and not suitable for release.

Mr Siu said officials had started assessing the criteria for clarification and would release the results.