GOVERNOR Chris Patten yesterday urged China to help resolve vital outstanding issues to remove doubts over the territory's fate after 1997. In a goodwill gesture, he said the Government would respond positively to invitations by the China-appointed Preliminary Working Committee (PWC) for officials to attend seminars on Hong Kong's financial status and reclamation plans. Mr Patten was speaking at the Foreign Correspondents' Club one day before returning to London to discuss British strategy on 1997. Concrete reassurances, he said, should be given to individuals and businesses by the British and Chinese governments on their commitment to retaining the factors that had made the enclave tick during the past decades. This could be done by making a commitment to ensure that Hong Kong is in the best possible economic, environmental, social and educational shape on June 30, 1997, he said, so the incoming Special Administrative Region government could get off to the best possible start. 'There are people in Hong Kong who could give more reassurance by being less ready to let go of components of Hong Kong's economic and social success, to let go of assets assured to Hong Kong in the Joint Declaration and Basic Law, whenever there is any sign of controversy about them,' he said. The administration, he assured, was not ready to alter the fundamentals of the territory's success story. Hong Kong would not turn back on the secret of its success, he said. 'There can be no doubt about that before 1997. There should be no doubt about that after 1997. Sadly some people have such doubts,' he said. Mr Patten attributed the doubts to the deadlock in the Joint Liaison Group. A solution to concerns such as the right of abode, Court of Final Appeal, Container Terminal 9 and the future of the civil service would boost confidence, he said. He indicated, however, that there was no change in government policy over the PWC. 'What we haven't been prepared to do is to join the PWC formally or to treat it, as it were, as an alternative organ of the JLG.' He hoped officials would be able to brief PWC members on issues including nationality, visa abolition agreements and right of abode as Legal Department officials did on the localisation and adaptation of laws. 'And if we are invited to attend a seminar on reclamation in the harbour - we haven't yet had an invitation - I'm sure we would want to respond to that positively,' he said.