Politicians from across the spectrum are to visit Taipei in the run-up to the mayoral election next month. Eleven of the 13 Democratic Party legislators, led by chairman Martin Lee Chu-ming, will visit Taipei between November 28 and December 1. Only Law Chi-kwong and Michael Ho Mun-ka will not join the trip. Fred Li Wah-ming, who has made similar visits before, said: 'Our coming delegation will be the biggest one in terms of size and importance.' Although the Democrats have to pay for their flights, Mr Li said the Taiwan authorities would offer free food and accommodation. It is understood that the Liberal Party chairman Allen Lee Peng-fei and his chosen successor James Tien Pei-chun will also visit Taiwan in a separate delegation. Although no legislators from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong will visit Taipei, two of eight legislative assistants who plan to join the 'observation' tour are from the DAB. The group, which will be offered free air tickets on top of free food and accommodation, also includes academics and community leaders. Professor Lau Siu-kai, associate director of the Chinese University's Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, did not believe the Taiwan authorities were attempting to achieve any major political purpose from the invitations. 'The Taiwan government is considerably proud of its democratic elections and democratic development. They feel that the degree of democracy in Taiwan is higher than that in Hong Kong and would have reference value for Hong Kong,' he said. 'They are just hoping that the Hong Kong Government would adopt an even friendlier attitude towards them should community and political leaders here hold a more favourable attitude towards them.'