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FS outlines fiscal consolidation plan

In the 2024-25 Budget announced today, Financial Secretary Paul Chan proposed a number of measures to increase revenue and outlined a fiscal consolidation programme which aims to restore fiscal balance in a few years’ time.   Mr Chan said even though the Government strived to reduce expenditure as the COVID-19 pandemic had subsided, the total expenditure for 2023-24 reached $727.9 billion, representing an increase of 36.9% compared with 2018-19, of which operating expenditure rose substantially by 40.2% whereas operating revenue increased only 13.1%.   On capital works, owing to the fact that the Government has been pressing ahead with land and housing supply projects, along with other infrastructure works for improving the environment and people’s livelihood, the average annual expenditure has increased from about $76 billion over the past five years to about $85 billion in 2023-24.   Fiscal reserves have dropped to the current level of $733.2 billion.   Fiscal consoli

New online application platform starts

Police today announced the launch of a one-stop online platform for members of the public to conveniently submit permit applications and make payments online.


The Hong Kong Police Force Online Applications Platform provides application services for Closed Area Permits, Road Event Permits and Location Filming in its first phase.


Applications for Electronic Tourism Closed Area Permit will be open starting December 1 to tie in with the second phase of the Sha Tau Kok opening-up plan that will be implemented in January 2024.


Police explained that through the new platform, people can apply for online services by logging in with just one account, saving time spent on queuing and filling out handwritten forms.


They also pointed out that the platform supports multiple registration and login methods, including email, local mobile phone numbers, iAM Smart and iAM Smart+.


Based on the applicants' registration particulars, the platform automatically fills out most parts of the form, sparing them from repeated data entry.


What’s more, users can check the progress of their application anytime via the platform and upload supplementary documents if necessary.


Those who encounter problems when registering, logging in or filling out forms can call the 24-hour hotline 8226 1886 for assistance.


In the future, the platform will roll out other electronic services of the Police Force in phases, such as applications for Sexual Conviction Record Check, Certificate of No Criminal Conviction, checking Criminal Conviction Record Data and applying for assistance in conducting academic researches.

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