THE Government risks placing an unfair burden on taxpayers if its contribution to the old-age pension scheme is too great, the Acting Secretary for Education and Manpower, Lam Woon-kong, said yesterday. Speaking after meetings with political party representatives, Mr Lam said the Government's expenses would be passed on to the taxpayers. ''If you want the taxpayers to take on the whole burden of an old-age pension, then the redistribution effect and the degree of unfairness would be extremely severe,'' he said. Mr Lam was referring to a counter-proposal by three leading political parties in the Legislative Council - the United Democrats (UDHK), Liberal Party and Meeting Point - which asked the Government to pay for the scheme - an estimated cost of $7.5 billion. The Government has said the scheme will be paid for by a deduction from every worker's salary. The parties also asked that the central provident fund be launched with the pension scheme. ''I must stress that the burden of the taxpayers would become more heavy if they were asked to foot the bill of the pension,'' he said. The Government has yet to receive more details on the counter-proposal, but the initial scheme has given rise to a number of concerns. ''Is the pension affordable to the taxpayers? Is it fair to them? These are questions that we have to consider,'' Mr Lam said. On the setting up of the central provident fund, Mr Lam said: ''It is not an effective nor efficient system as has been proven in other parts of the world. ''When it comes to savings, how can the Government be a better judge of the individuals in deciding on how and where and when to save. So we don't feel that the CPF is a good system for Hong Kong.''