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Artificial island study set

The Government today awarded a consultancy agreement for the study on the artificial islands in the Central Waters to Ove Arup & Partners Hong Kong with a contract value of about $220 million.   The Civil Engineering & Development Department said the agreement mainly comprises a detailed planning and engineering study for the 1,000-hectare artificial islands around Kau Yi Chau.   There will also be a feasibility study on the priority road link and the priority rail link connecting the artificial islands.   The study is scheduled to start tomorrow for completion within 42 months.   The artificial islands in the Central Waters is one of the initiatives to increase land supply under the Lantau Tomorrow Vision announced by the Chief Executive in her 2018 Policy Address.   The drive aims to alleviate the acute shortage of land in the medium-to-long run, and to meet Hong Kong’s long-term housing, social and economic development needs. http://dlvr.it/S1lyqs

Asset freeze explained

(To watch the full media session with sign language interpretation, click here.)   Secretary for Security John Lee today said notices issued last week for freezing of property in writing to freeze all the shares of Next Digital held by Jimmy Lai and the property in the local bank accounts of three companies owned by him are a national security matter and have nothing to do with press freedom.   Responding to reporters' questions, Mr Lee said: “Any activities that endanger national security will not be tolerated. Such activities, people or organisations will receive the full force of the law.”   Pursuant to Schedule 3 to the Implementation Rules for Article 43 of the National Security Law, where the Secretary for Security has reasonable grounds to suspect that any property held by any person is offence related property, the secretary may, by notice specifying the property, direct that a person must not deal with the property except under the authority of a licence granted by the secretary.   Mr Lee noted that issuing the notices aimed to prevent acts that endangered national security in accordance with the law and had no direct relation to the work of journalists.   “Endangering national security is a very serious crime. The Government’s position is very clear - we will make use of all legal measures to prevent, interdict and suppress such activities endangering national security. It is illegal activities that we are dealing with, not press work.”
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