The proposed Mandatory Provident Fund will be given priority by the new government, the Secretary for Financial Services said yesterday. Rafael Hui Si-yan dispelled concerns the fund would be radically overhauled by the incoming administration. 'The new government will treat it with the same degree of priority. From the administration's point of view there is absolutely conformity and no break in the work,' Mr Hui said. He was unable to give a date as to when the scheme would be introduced. Financial service companies have been concerned that delaying the subsidiary legislation until after the handover could leave it open to sweeping amendments. There were also concerns the Provisional Legislators might stall the passing of the ordinance. Mr Hui said: 'I have not asked the Provisional Legislature [about the fund] but I have received some positive messages. Our response is to present the subsidiary legislation to it as soon as possible.' MPF Office director Pamela Tan Kam Mi-wah said the scheme would generate about $20 billion a year in new funds for private sector management in its early years, with the amount rising to $40 billion as it matures. Mrs Tan said: 'It will be an impetus for growth in the fund management industry.' Government officials were providing details on financial services policy following the handover. Mr Hui said: 'We will ensure the rules are fair, the playing field is even and will maintain international standards in the various markets.' He said a range of policy innovations in banking and financial services would assist the market in keeping at the forefront of developments. These ranged from developing a debt market, developing local and regional settlement systems and introducing new financial products.