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'Silver economy' panel set up

The Commerce & Economic Development Bureau today established the Advisory Panel on Silver Economy and convened its first meeting with the aim of initiating research on the development of Hong Kong’s growing elderly population as a consumer segment.    Chairing the panel, Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Algernon Yau said the elderly demographic was emerging as an important part of the city’s economy.    He highlighted that many products and services designed to enhance the quality of life enjoyed by elderly residents are spurring growth and business opportunities.    Mr Yau added that promoting such products and services can help to foster the development of the so-called silver economy and unleash business potential in the elderly market, whilst also catering to the aspirations and needs of elderly people. He said this would be the advisory panel’s focus.     At today’s meeting, the panel endorsed its terms of reference, reviewed statistics relating to

Basic public services to resume

The Government today announced that its departments will resume some basic public services from January 28 in addition to the continued provision of emergency and essential public services.   It made the announcement after considering the needs for the functioning of society and the economy, adding that its ultimate goal is to resume full public services when conditions permit.   The special work arrangements for government employees has been implemented since December 2 last year. Aside from staff providing emergency and essential public services as well as those involved in anti-epidemic efforts, all government employees were arranged to work from home.   Despite the epidemic's impact, the Government said it has the responsibility to maintain the continued functioning of the community and the economy.   To meet the needs of the public and enterprises, bureaus and departments will resume some basic public services from January 28 upon implementation of targeted measures to reduce social contact and measures for infection control.   Government departments will separately announce the services that will be resumed, relevant arrangements and details.   In view of the need to reduce people flow and social contact, bureaus and departments will adopt flexible measures to reduce the number of staff working together in an office as far as possible.   The Government appealed for public understanding as the waiting time for public services may be lengthened or applications may need a longer processing time due to the possible adjustment in some offices' opening hours.   It also encouraged people to use alternative means, such as the post, drop-in boxes or online channels, to receive the services they need.   Meanwhile, employers are urged to make flexible work arrangements for employees in accordance with their operational needs, including allowing them to work from home when appropriate.
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