CE vows 2024 livelihood benefits ‘to be no less than previous year’: Kai Fong

2023-09-27 03:33
BY Yuki Lei

Macau General Union of Neighbourhood Associations (UGAMM) President Chan Ka Leong quoted Chief Executive (CE) Ho Iat Seng as saying yesterday that local residents’ livelihood benefits provided by the government next year “won’t be lower than the previous year”, adding that the application process for the government’s subsidised home-ownership scheme (HOS) flats was expected to start still this year.

The government will hold a press conference concerning the applications for HOS flats at 11:30 a.m. today.

Chan, whose group is commonly known as Kai Fong in Cantonese, made the remarks to local media outside Government Headquarters after presenting Ho his group’s views and suggestions in the run-up to the chief executive’s 2024 Policy Address in the legislature’s hemicycle in November.

According to Chan, during yesterday’s meeting with Ho, his group handed over 16 comments and suggestions about next year’s policy address, hoping to guarantee that residents’ livelihood and welfare benefits will not be lower than those of the current year, focusing on the government’s ongoing “1+4” development strategy and promoting the Macau New Neighbourhood (MNN) project in the Guangdong-Macau In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin.

The government’s “1+4” development strategy aims for appropriate economic diversification by promoting four main industries – big health, modern finance, high-tech, and conventions and exhibitions, including culture and sport.

In addition, Chan said, his group also expressed its views to Ho on the government’s “five-rung housing ladder” policy, including shortening the application period for a social housing flat, the application and construction status of affordable housing, the progress of the government’s sandwich-class housing projects, and “always updating” the public about its rental housing project for senior citizens.

The five-rung housing ladder policy is aimed at improving the city’s social and livelihood issues. The “five-rung housing ladder” comprises social housing, subsidised HOS flats, “sandwich-class housing scheme”, rental housing for senior citizens, and the private housing market.

When asked by a reporter whether the government would continue its 10,000-pataca cash handout next year, Chan said that Ho had not said much about it. Chan said he was “optimistic” about the continuation of the measure, pointing out that the cash handout had not be reduced or stopped even during the three-year COVID-19 pandemic. The final decision would depend on the government’s announcement, he underlined.

In terms of public housing projects, Chan said that the government was “fully prepared” to tackle the lack of housing in Macau, adding that the government’s study on the sandwich-class housing scheme for middle-income households was still underway. 

Macau General Union of Neighbourhood Associations (UGAMM) President Chan Ka Leong approaches reporters after yesterday’s closed-door meeting with Chief Executive Ho Iat Seng about next year’s Policy Address at Government Headquarters in Praia Grande. – Photo: Yuki Lei


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