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Tuesday, December 8, 2015, 18:27

Govt bets on food trucks to boost employment

By Luis Liu / chinadailyasia.com
Govt bets on food trucks to boost employment
Visitors pose for photos at the Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai, Hong Kong April 13, 2015. (Parker Zheng / China Daily)

HONG KONG - Hong Kong's pilot food truck scheme will provide new business opportunities for the young people, hopes the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau.

The two-year pilot scheme, which could run out at the end of 2017, will be launched at six of the city's most visited tourist spots with two trucks at each location.

Visitors to Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai, Salisbury Garden and near the Museum of Art in Tsim Sha Tsui, the New Central Harbourfront, the Ocean Park and Hong Kong Disney Land will not have to look far to grab a quick bite.

After assessing the viability of the scheme, the government will take a decision on expanding it to other sites across the city. Also, it will consider then if a specific legislation is needed, secretary for commerce and economic development Gregory So Kam-leung said.

The food trucks will be regulated under ordinances governing food processing vehicles and will each operate on the strength of a Food Factory License.

The government will start accepting applications in the first quarter of next year and applicants would need to go through a two-stage selection procedure. A judging panel apppinted by the government comprising venue representatives and food critics will take the final decision.

To ensure fair competition, one company can only file one application, the city's tourism commission said.

Industry insiders estimate it could cost a shorlisted applicant as much as HK$600,000 to start the business. The government will work with the Hong Kong Mortgage Corporation Limited so that HK$300,000 could be extended by way of a loan.

The proposal will be submitted to the LegCo on Dec 15. The first food truck would be put into use in the end of 2017, according to the tourism commission.

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