Taxi and minibus operators have been asked to be patient while officials work out a scheme allowing them to run services to and from the Lok Ma Chau border. After visiting the checkpoint with transport and security officials yesterday, the operators warned they might strike if their demand was rejected. They want to be allowed to provide services to and from the checkpoint, which will be open around the clock starting from January 27. Commissioner for Transport Robert Footman said the department was still looking for the best way to meet their request. 'We are proactively considering the on-site condition at Lok Ma Chau and feasibility of allowing restricted entry of taxi and public minibuses in the closed areas after midnight as a trial scheme,' he said. The commissioner stressed that the operators' request had not been rejected and a decision would be made after a solution was found for five problems: the selection of a safe location for taxi and minibus stands; an estimate of the potential demand; connection with cross-border shuttle buses; compatibility with the project to improve and expand the control point; and mode of operations. However, the department failed to offer a deadline for the study. Wong Yu-ting, the spokesman for the taxi operators who are fighting for the opening of Lok Ma Chau restricted area, said they had not ruled out a strike. 'This is still our last resort if they turn down our request,' he said. Leung Hung, a spokesman representing the minibus trade, was confident that the government would make a decision early next month. He expected up to 40 taxis and minibuses would eventually be allowed to enter the restricted area at any one time.