Letters to the Editor, September 16, 2016

PUBLISHED : Friday, 16 September, 2016, 4:12pm
UPDATED : Friday, 16 September, 2016, 4:12pm

More help vital for HK’s young entrepreneurs

I agree with the letter by Hui Wing-lam (“Local start-ups face so many obstacles”, September 9).

In Hong Kong, because large enterprises monopolise the market, young people find it tough to successfully launch a business. To realise your dream of a start-up, you need a substantial sum of money.

The government must make subsidies available to young entrepreneurs and make available business premises that can be let out at below the market rent so the fledgling bosses can afford it.

It should organise talks by professionals who can share their experience about getting a new company up and running.

This can help youngsters have a better understanding of the real business environment which they will have to work in. Hopefully they can then be ­better equipped to deal with the monopolies which are harmful to our society.

The government can learn from the policies adopted to ­assist young entrepreneurs in Korea. These measures help these young people overcome the regulatory, structural, educational and cultural obstacles prevalent in the country.

Talk is cheap. Young businessmen and women need more than words of encouragement. They need concrete help so they can realise their dreams of establishing a start-up.

Maggie Chan Hiu-suet, Cheung Sha Wan

Mother Teresa really deserved sainthood

I think Mother Teresa was a role model. She led a life of sacrifice in the service of the poor.

Thanks to her missionary work, centres were established all over the world which seek to improve the lives of underprivileged people.

I think we can learn from her selflessness. She contributed to society without seeking any ­rewards. I believe the Catholic Church was right to declare her a saint.

In Hong Kong, there is a wide gap between rich and poor and the problems of poverty remain unsolved. I wish more citizens could show some of the selflessness characterised by Mother Teresa’s order of nuns

Biki Chan, Yau Yat Chuen

Mission’s critics cannot be ignored

There has been a debate about whether Mother Teresa ­deserved sainthood and I ­wondered why some people have been critical of her and her ­religious order.

A former worker at her ­mission criticised the attitude of Mother Teresa and her ­sisters. Of course they were devoted to helping people who were ­impoverished, but they also felt that the poor must accept their lot.

There was also the allegation that Mother Teresa allowed ­members of her order to secretly baptise dying patients, ­including Muslims and Hindus.

I think more research is needed into the work done by Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity.

Choi Lok-yiu, Kowloon Tong

Citizens back broad range of views in Legco

Hongkongers have now joined their former colonial ­masters by ­voting with their hearts and not necessarily their heads in the ­recent Legislative Council polls.

As the UK struggles with the result and implications of the ­ vote in June to leave the ­European Union, so Hong Kong may struggle with the heartfelt desire to control its own destiny.

To date, the government has taken a hard line, hoping the majority of the population is ­behind it.

The newly elected members of Legco demonstrate that Hong Kong wants a broad range of views, with a clear goal to ­maintain the “two systems”, now and beyond 2047.

Tymon Mellor, Tai Po

Encouraged by lawmaker’s strong support

I refer to the report (“ ‘King of votes’ seeks democracy from bottom up”, September 8).

Independent lawmaker ­Eddie Chu Hoi-dick got more votes than any other candidate in the five geographical constituencies (84,121).

I do not fully support Chu, but it is good to see a localist ­getting more votes than pro­establishment candidates. This is proof of the rise of democracy in Hong Kong.

An increasing ­number of citizens are speaking out in defence of it and this indicates that we are starting on the road to ­democracy.

As I said, I have problems with some of Chu’s political programme. I am not convinced that what he calls “democratic self-determination” would be suitable for Hong Kong. I believe it could lead to serious social ­conflict and I do not think it is feasible.

However, I do think that, as a lawmaker, he will fight for greater democracy for Hong Kong ­people.

Desmond Chan Chun-fai, Tseung Kwan O

Mountain bike trails were in appalling state

After having carefully studied where it is possible and legal to cycle, I realised that Hong Kong had dedicated trails for ­mountain biking, so I went on the bike trails in Sai Kung.

I am an experienced ­mountain biker, but to my amazement I had to accept that the trails are absolutely not ­appropriate for this discipline.

The tracks are not maintained and some parts are barely suitable for walking, which makes it tremendously dangerous, even for people on foot. The bottom line was that I had to carry my bike 80 per cent of the time.

It really seems that the ­decision-making officials have no clue about how to design a mountain biking trail. Besides, I wonder about the responsibility of the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department in the case of someone sustaining a serious injury.

The Hong Kong government’s instinct appears to be to come up with interdictions ­instead of thinking about and providing solutions. In Sai Kung town, for example, there are signs everywhere forbidding people to park or attach their bikes, but there is no bicycle parking either.

Almost every trail entrance in the eastern New Territories has a sign forbidding bicycles.

However, if no decent alternatives are offered, we should not be ­surprised to have people ­riding on the roads or on hiking trails.

For a city like Hong Kong, which claims to be a model of modernity in Asia, I find the lack of infrastructure deplorable and almost embarrassing.

Maybe it is time to change our clueless officials into people who actually practise the sports in question and therefore know what they are talking about.

Maybe by doing so, Hong Kong could climb up the ­medals-table ranking in the next ­Olympics and not score last on the rankings, together with a number of developing countries.

John Smith, Sai Kung

Transforming old clothes a green option

I refer to the report “Researchers ferment old clothes into new textiles”, (September 8).

About three per cent of the more than 9,000 tonnes of ­municipal solid waste that ends up in our landfills each day is ­textile waste.

Many Hongkongers are very wasteful when it comes to clothes. They follow the latest trends and fashions, often throwing out shirts and jeans that could last them a decade. They may only be worn for a fashion season and are then thrown away.

We could see a reduction in this volume of waste if recycled old clothes can be turned into new fabrics through a “range of new technologies” being developed by researchers in the city.

I hope the techniques they are using can be expanded so that old clothes can be reused. With less waste going into our landfills, they can have a longer lifespan.

Lynette Tang Wing-yan, Tseung Kwan O