Students cash in on special subsidy

Top News | Angel Kwan 21 Feb 2020

Angel Kwan

About 900,000 youngsters are set to benefit from the government's allocation of HK$900 million to provide an additional HK$1,000 for a student subsidy of HK$3,500 each.

Schools will also get a one-off subsidy totaling HK$42 million to buy masks and thermometers.

No extra application is needed for the additional HK$1,000, the Education Bureau said yesterday.

"It is expected that the first batch will receive the grant within a week after the setting up of the anti-epidemic fund," Secretary for Education Kevin Yeung Yun-hung said.

About 2,200 schools - including kindergartens, all public-sector schools, direct-subsidy schools, and private primary and secondary schools - will benefit from the HK$42 million subsidy for them to buy equipment such as masks and thermometers, clean their campuses and pay other epidemic prevention expenses.

The subsidy ranges from HK$10,000 to HK$25,000 per school, depending on its type and size.

Each kindergarten will receive HK$10,000 to HK$15,000.

Public primary and secondary schools including special schools, and schools under the direct subsidy scheme, will receive HK$15,000 to HK$25,000. Boarding sections of special schools will receive HK$15,000 to HK$25,000.

Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor said the government has submitted a proposal for a HK$30 billion anti-epidemic fund, which will be discussed in the Legislative Council's finance committee today.

About HK$16.9 billion will be used to provide relief to enterprises and individuals, including retail, catering, transport, arts and culture and tourism industries.

About 70,000 retailers will benefit from a HK$5.6 billion cash subsidy. The plan is to target businesses which sell goods at a physical location mainly to the general public for personal or household consumption.

About 28,000 food license holders will benefit from a total of HK$3.73 billion. Subsidies range from HK$80,000 to HK$200,000, depending on the type of license.

Public transport providers will be subsidized with HK$3.23 billion, including fuel costs or electricity costs and one-off subsidies.

It also proposed a special allowance to benefit 58,000 households under the working family allowance and 145,000 households under the student financial assistance.

Startups at Science Park and Cyberport will also see six months of rent waived, benefiting 1,800 companies.

Another HK$10.19 billion will target fighting the virus.

angel.kwan@singtaonewscorp.com

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