Letters to the Editor, March 6, 2013
Lantau - great potential for further growth
Decades ago, Lantau was seen as being isolated from the main concentrations of population - Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula.
It took a lot longer than it does now to get to Lantau and to travel around the island.
The situation has improved with the completion of highways and a rail link.
It was seen to have opened its gates to the outside world with the completion of the Hong Kong International Airport and the convention and exhibition centre AsiaWorld-Expo.
Now, visitors from all over the world are exploring Lantau, including the Disneyland theme park and the Big Buddha at Ngong Ping.
These developments have brought welcome job opportunities, especially to residents in Tung Chung and Tsing Yi.
I think we will see an expansion of the island's role as a business and recreation centre once the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge is completed.
The bridge will reduce travelling times between the three cities and will lead to more business and job opportunities. It will offer a gateway to Guangdong.
This will make it possible to develop Lantau into a business and recreation centre.
I think it will lead to more exhibitions and conventions coming to AsiaWorld-Expo.
Because of that, it would be a good idea to duplicate a Lan Kwai Fong or Soho entertainment district somewhere near the airport.
It would be a popular recreation centre for people at the conventions and could also offer another option to Hong Kong residents. And, of course, we should not forget the other assets Lantau has to offer, such as its natural beauty and historical sites.
It would therefore still have an important educational role for local residents, especially at the weekend.
Lantau is no longer a remote area, physically or conceptually.
With the bridge linking Hong Kong, Macau and Guangdong, I think we will see even more job opportunities on Lantau and greater economic growth.
Lantau could become a new and important business and leisure centre for the region.
Chu Kar-kin, Tseung Kwan O
Breastfeeding is obviously the best option
It appears that the government is still struggling to deal with the problem of parallel-goods traders, which has led to shortages of formula milk in Hong Kong. And yet it has always seemed to me that, for mothers, breast milk is the best choice.
Some parents may be misled by TV commercials claiming that formula contains more nutrients and vital substances than breast milk does, and that their children will be healthier if they are given formula instead.
I do not believe that such claims are true.
Despite extensive research and development by producers of formula milk, their products do not contain the nutrients found in breast milk that strengthen the baby's immune system.
Also, some parents might believe that breastfeeding is time-consuming and using formula is more convenient. However, they are wrong. I have a friend who gave birth recently. She told me that breastfeeding is not all that time- consuming and she is glad that she doesn't need to worry about purchasing tins of formula.
I urge new parents to give breastfeeding a shot, instead of queueing for tins of infant formula.
Adrian Lo, Tsuen Wan
HK could be booming milk formula hub
For years, our dysfunctional government has spent enormous amounts of our money promoting Hong Kong as a hub for this and that - a cyber hub, a Chinese-medicine hub, an Islamic-finance hub, all of which have hopelessly flopped after enormous expense.
But here we have a made-in-Hong Kong success story, handed to us by the private sector - a baby-formula hub, which could generate enormous profits for the city.
Yet the government is trying to kill it. Why? Is this jealously, a pathetic example of the we-did-not-think-of-it-first syndrome?
Seriously, Hong Kong has the potential to be the clean-food hub for the whole of China, an instant runaway success, requiring no taxpayer dollars and producing enormous revenues for us. So why is the government not exploiting this? Am I missing something here?
R. E. J. Bunker, Lantau
Schools should promote Chinese music
I refer to the report ("Venerable Chinese ruan gets new voice", February 21).
I am glad that there were "new voices" at this concert featuring the ruan ("a four-stringed Chinese lute").
I love Chinese music but, usually, I find there are not many different musical instruments. However, there were 18 of these instruments at this concert, in five different sizes.
It is a shame that many Hongkongers do not attach much importance to Chinese music. If parents want their children to learn music, it is normally through a Western, rather than Chinese, musical instrument. This is worrying. It could mean that future generations will grow up not knowing anything about this aspect of Chinese culture.
Parents and schools should teach more about Chinese culture, including music, to children.
Sara Fang, Tsuen Wan
Ask young people for their input
I was astonished to learn that a pressure group was suggesting that young people could live in shipping containers under flyovers.
The group believes this can help young people who are desperately hunting for affordable housing and finding it difficult because of skyrocketing rents.
It may seem like a good idea, to make use of land that is currently not in use, but areas under flyovers and footbridges are just not suitable for residential use.
The reasons are simple, most importantly the lack of privacy and poor air quality. Then you have problems with security and installing water and sewage pipes.
It would be better for organisations such as this pressure group to sit down with young people and discuss with them how they think it would be possible to make available more affordable housing.
They might have some very innovative ideas.
Any policies that are adopted to solve this problem should take into account what these people think.
Ho Chien-chang, Sha Tin
Long-standing issue at heart of supply crisis
I refer to Tom Holland's Monitor column ("Tsang's budget will do nothing to solve HK's twin problems", February 26).
It is encouraging to see this level of journalistic scrutiny on major issues that affect so many Hong Kong individuals and businesses.
I applaud Holland for shedding light on a long-standing issue that a large portion of the population is unaware of, and is at the very heart of the dilemma regarding Hong Kong's inadequate supply of housing and ever-increasing prices.
Louis Loong, secretary general, the Real Estate Developers Association of Hong Kong