Fewer apply for plum gov't jobsTop News | Staff Reporter 2 Dec 2019
Amid continuing strife, fewer people are aiming for high office in government service as the annual recruitment exercise shows.
The examination for administrative, executive, labor, trade and transport officers is being held on Saturday, and 278 places are available. But 76,000 people have applied for the positions compared to 88,000 last year.
According to figures obtained by Sing Tao Daily, sister paper of The Standard, applications for executive officers dropped the most: to 19,000 this year from 23,000 last year. And the administrative officer figure is down to 12,000 from 15,000.
Applications for labor, trade and transport officers total 17,000, 16,000 and 12,000 respectively compared to 19,000, 18,000 and 13,000 last year.
Applications opened on September 14 and closed on October 4, or three months after protests broke out on June 9.
Administrative officers, with a monthly salary of between HK$53,195 and HK$105,175, usually work directly under bureau and department heads in policy-making. The chase is highly competitive, with one post for about 500 applicants.
The successful ones are dubbed "stars of tomorrow" as predecessors have become principal officials and then chief executives.
Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, former leader Donald Tsang Yam-kuen, Chief Secretary for Administration Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, former financial secretary John Tsang Chun-wah and former chief secretary Anson Chan Fong On-sang began their careers as administrative officers.
Upon completion of a three-year probation, they are sent to top universities overseas for training under full government sponsorship. And when they are back and in service they can expect to gain broad experience with a change of department every two to three years.