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Published: 14:03, July 13, 2022 | Updated: 14:16, July 13, 2022
Talks at LegCo 'a step forward in executive-legislative ties'
By Chen Shuman in Hong Kong
Published:14:03, July 13, 2022 Updated:14:16, July 13, 2022 By Chen Shuman in Hong Kong

Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu (right) speaks to the media, as President of the Legislative Council Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen looks on, after holding his first meeting with the city’s lawmakers at the Antechamber of the Legislative Council on July 13, 2022. (CALVIN NG / CHINA DAILY)

A meeting between lawmakers and key government officials on Wednesday is a good demonstration of how the executive branch can work hand in hand with the legislature under the principle of patriots administering Hong Kong for the public’s common good, said the chief executive.

After the first antechamber meeting between the two sides, John Lee Ka-chiu said regular discussions with legislators will help the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region government formulate policies that would better meet the needs of the public.

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The meetings, which began at about 9:30 am, comprised three sessions, each of which lasted 30 minutes.

At his first question-and-answer session in the Legislative Council on July 6, Lee proposed holding the informal monthly meetings in the legislature’s antechamber to foster ties with lawmakers.

Apart from checks and balances, the executive branch and the legislature also need to cooperate and communicate with each other, said Lee

Lee led a team of principal officials, including three secretaries and their deputies, as well as Carol Yip Man-kuen, director of the Chief Executive’s Office, at the talks.

Saying he’s “very satisfied” with the smooth conduct of the meetings, Lee thanked the lawmakers for their active participation, saying he’s confident that the relevant mechanism will play a greater role in implementing policies that would benefit residents most.

He described the discussions as “meaningful”, with everyone giving suggestions about solving practical problems. Wednesday’s meeting is just the first step in strengthening mutual communication, to be followed by further exchanges.

Apart from checks and balances, the executive branch and the legislature also need to cooperate and communicate with each other, Lee said.

Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu attends his first Q&A session with members of the Legislative Council in Hong Kong on July 6, 2022. (PHOTO / XINHUA)

Andrew Leung Kwan-yuen, president of the Legislative Council, said the meetings offered a great opportunity to increase understanding between government officials and lawmakers although each the sessions lasted only half an hour.

Most of the legislators agreed that the discussions will help promote the relationship between the executive and the legislature and stimulate interaction between the two sides, he said.

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Lawmaker Starry Lee Wai-king said such exchanges will allow the Legislative Council to monitor the government’s work more effectively and cooperate with the authorities.

She said both sides were able to express their views fully, adding she has offered advice on matters concerning quarantine-free travel with the Chinese mainland and the development of the Northern Metropolis project.

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