Former secretary for security Regina Ip Lau Suk-yee expressed an interest in standing in the Legislative Council election next year as the think-tank she heads opened its second community service centre, in Tai Hang on Hong Kong Island, yesterday. Mrs Ip said that while she was yet to reach a final decision, she was always interested in serving the community in a different capacity, including as an 'elected politician'. 'I am interested in standing in the election. It is because I have been an appointed official, a civil servant, a political-appointed official as well as a student studying abroad. I am willing to serve the community in different capacity,' said the chairwoman of the Savantas Policy Institute. The think-tank is widely regarded as a vehicle for her to re-enter politics after stepping down from her post as security chief in 2003 amid a public outcry over national security legislation. It opened its first community service centre in Pok Fu Lam in January. Mrs Ip also insisted that whether Legislative Council president Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai contested a seat in the Hong Kong Island constituency made little difference to her. 'Even if Mrs Fan supports my candidacy, it doesn't mean that her supporters will automatically support me,' she said. On Tuesday, Mrs Fan said she would not stand for the Hong Kong Island constituency if Mrs Ip and Liberal Party vice-chairwoman Miriam Lau Kin-yee contested the seat. Mrs Fan also expressed her willingness to step down from the Legco presidency if elected a member of the National People's Congress Standing Committee next year. Savantas' director of policy development Ronald Chan Ngok-pang said the think-tank planned to launch a voter registration drive next month as new voters had to be registered by the end of June in order to be eligible to vote in the upcoming district council election. Both Mr Chan and David Wong Chor-fung, a former administrative officer who is in charge of the Tai Hang centre, said they were considering running in the district council poll later this year. Meanwhile, both Basic Law committee vice-chairwoman Elsie Leung Oi-sie and Executive Councillor Leung Chun-ying said they did not think there was a need for Mrs Fan to quit the Legco presidency if elected a NPC Standing Committee member because they did not see any conflict between the two roles. 'As Mrs Fan is so careful and cautious, it shows that she is an ideal candidate for the NPC Standing Committee,' Ms Leung said. Both Ms Leung and Mr Leung were guests officiating at the opening ceremony of Savantas' new centre.