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Officials welcome NPCSC's approval

Chief Secretary Matthew Cheung, Financial Secretary Paul Chan and Secretary for Justice Teresa Cheng welcomed the approval by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPCSC) of the amended Annex I and Annex II to the Basic Law today.   In his statement, Mr Cheung said he strongly supports the amended Annex I and Annex II to the Basic Law as it ensures that Hong Kong's electoral system can progress with wider representation and cope better with the city's actual situation, with a view to putting Hong Kong's political structure back on a firmer and more promising footing.   He noted that through improving Hong Kong’s electoral system, the fundamental principle of "patriots administering Hong Kong" can be fully implemented, national sovereignty, security and development interests can be fully protected and Hong Kong's constitutional order established according to the Constitution and the Basic Law can be fully safeguarded.   It will also restore order from chaos and ensure the steadfast and successful implementation of "one country, two systems" and the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong.   As the electoral system is improved, Hong Kong can find its way out of a political swamp and create a stable social environment conducive to good governance, thereby enabling the Government to focus on developing the economy and improving people's livelihoods.   Mr Cheung believes that the executive authorities and the legislature can better interact and co-operate with each other, put aside their differences for the common good of the community, develop a cordial, close and constructive working relationship, and work smoothly together on a people-oriented policy vision to propel Hong Kong forward.   He said the Government will render full co-operation and strive to complete the amendments to the relevant local electoral laws in accordance with the amended Annex I and Annex II to the Basic Law by introducing a bill to the Legislative Council as early as practicable. He will, together with the governing team and the civil service, make all-out efforts in explaining the amendments to the community.   Mr Chan and Ms Cheng also supported the passage of the amended Annex I and Annex II to the Basic Law for improving Hong Kong's electoral system.   In his statement, the finance chief said through improving the electoral system of the Hong Kong SAR, the principle of “patriots administering Hong Kong” can be fully implemented with institutional safeguards and Hong Kong’s political development can be back on track.   The executive authorities and the legislature can restore better interaction with Hong Kong's overall interests as the core consideration, which can play a pivotal role in maintaining the city’s long-term prosperity and stability.       Mr Chan also said an improved electoral system will strengthen the executive-led political system and enhance the governance capability of the Hong Kong SAR Government, thereby enabling the community as a whole to focus on progressively resolving Hong Kong’s deep-seated issues to allow sustained social and economic stability and prosperity.   In a statement, the justice chief emphasised that the increase in the size and composition of the Election Committee and LegCo reflect a more balanced and orderly political participation as well as a broader representation of society, signifying an important move to advance Hong Kong's democratic electoral system.   Ms Cheng said she will lead the Department of Justice to render full support to the Government's work to improve the electoral system as early as possible to enhance Hong Kong’s governance efficacy.   Meanwhile, Secretary for Security John Lee and the heads of six disciplinary forces also issued a statement in support of the passage of the amended annexes to the Basic Law.   Mr Lee said he will lead the disciplinary forces to continue to resolutely safeguard national sovereignty, security and development interests, and ensure Hong Kong's prosperity and stability.   The heads of six disciplined forces said they will stand in solidarity and attend to their duties steadfastly to safeguard national security as well as maintaining the law and order, stability and security of the Hong Kong community.
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