Currently, there is no legislation for access to information held by the government. There exists a non-statutory Code on Access to Information which, inter alia, defines the scope of information that will be provided, sets out how the information will be made available and lays down the relevant procedures. There have been calls for providing the community with a statutory right to be well informed about the government, the services it provides and the basis for policies and decisions that affect individuals and the community as a whole.
In May 2013, a sub-committee was formed to conduct detailed reviews of the local situation and comprehensive comparative studies of the relevant laws in overseas jurisdictions, with a view to making appropriate recommendations on possible options for reform where appropriate.
The Sub-committee has been reviewing the experience in other jurisdictions and relevant literature on the issue including the report issued in March 2014 by the Ombudsman.
The members of the Access to Information Sub-committee (in alphabetical order) are:
|Mr Brian Gilchrist, Partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher (Chairman)|
|Ms Maisie Chan Kit-ling, JP, Deputy Secretary for Constitutional and Mainland Affairs 1, Constitutional and Mainland Affairs Bureau|
|Mr Jonathan Chang, SC, Barrister|
|Mr Daniel Cheng Chung-wai, Director of Administration, Chief Secretary for Administration's Office|
|Dr Andy Chiu, Director of Common Law Research Centre, Law School of Beijing Normal University|
|Mr Jose-Antonio Maurellet, SC, Barrister|
The Sub-committee's secretary is Ms Cathy Wan, Senior Government Counsel.