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Old April 15th, 2006, 06:21 PM   #1441
hkskyline
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There is already a thread about this :
http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=337079
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Old April 15th, 2006, 07:25 PM   #1442
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samsonyuen
That's great, why didn't it happen earlier?
It came mainly as a result of the public pressure to bring fare down in recent years, and the government sees the merger a possible way of cutting cost. Before Asian Financial Crisis in 1997, nobody would care about the steady rise in fare (bus and rail) when property price was surging 50% a year. In years when income and price of everything drops significantly, expenditure on transportation seriously take up a sizeable portion of many family's income. With a combined management, and with a larger economy of scale, some overhead may be brought down.

Also, i personally think the Shatin-Central Link as a catalyst of the merger. The KCRC traditionally operates railway lines that connects suburban to urban (East Rail, West Rail), and was thus presumed to be a suburban railway operator. Some years ago, the HK government invites tenders from MTR and KCRC to bid for the Shatin-Central Link, which is effectively an estension of KCRC's Ma On Shan's line to the heart of HK. The line was granted to KCRC, making the position of KCRC as suburban railway blurred. If KCRC gonna run an urban line anyway, why couldn't it be combined with MTR? The fact that there are two CEO taking US$1m a year doing something similar doesn't make too much sense.

To hkskyline: I do it on purpose in order to catch the attention of those who do not usually follow the HK's thread to this big news for both HK and transportion.
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Old April 15th, 2006, 07:28 PM   #1443
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RTHK news:
KCRC accused of lack of transparency over redundancy issue 2006-04-15 HKT 23:29

The KCRC Workers' Union has accused the rail company of not providing clear information over possible redundancies which may stem from its future merger with the Mass Transit Railway Corporation. Union chairman, Ko Po-kwan, said many workers were concerned they would be classified as non-frontline workers, thereby losing job security the K-C-R-C has promised. The union's launched a signature campaign to gauge members' opinions. The K-C-R-C and the M-T-R-C, in their announcement of a merger deal said that while all frontline staff would be retained, up to seven hundred other jobs would have to be slashed. But they believed the effects would be offset by some thirteen hundred jobs to be created for new development projects.
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Old April 16th, 2006, 05:04 AM   #1444
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12 April 2006
West Rail’s signalling failure at Tai Lam Tunnel
Corporate Press Release

The signalling system of KCR West Rail at Tai Lam Tunnel failed at 11:09am this morning. During the incident, the journey time between Nam Cheong Station and Tuen Mun Station was extended by 10-20 minutes and the service frequency was maintained at 8-15 minutes.

The initial investigation result reveals that a power component supplying electricity for the signalling system at the Tai Lam Tunnel section failed. KCRC is looking into the cause of the failure jointly with the supplier. Following urgent repairs, the signalling system failure was fixed at 11:51am and normal West Rail service was resumed.

KCRC would like to extend its apology to the affected passengers and had reported the incident to the concerned governmental departments.
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Old April 17th, 2006, 05:02 AM   #1445
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Critics warn of fare rises for travelers
Jonathan Cheng
17 April 2006
Hong Kong Standard

Tying subway fares to inflation indicators may leave travelers vulnerable to unchecked fare increases in coming years, critics of last week's merger between the city's two mass transit operators said.

Speaking on RTHK's City Forum program at Victoria Park, Richard Tsoi Yiu-cheong, the spokesman of the Coalition to Monitor Public Transport and Utilities, expressed fears Sunday the merged railway company could increase fares more drastically than citizens could bear.

Under the terms of the merger between the Kowloon-Canton Railway Corp and the MTR Corp, fares will not go up for the next two years, but after that, they will be determined by a formula that factors in inflation indicators such as the consumer price index.

"We're afraid that after two years, the fares are just going to keep on going up and up,'' said Tsoi, who called the two-year freeze on fare increases "a taste of sweetness before the bitterness sets in.''

He added: "We find it very strange the government doesn't consider following the bus company's lead, which just uses these inflation factors as a starting point.

"[The bus] fares will ultimately be determined by other factors, like how much the public can bear, and how much money the corporation is making.'' But government officials speaking at the forum called the current proposed mechanism reasonable, saying it will offer Hong Kong residents transparency and security.

"This is a system that everyone can rely on,'' said Patrick Ho Chong-kee, deputy secretary for transport of the Environment, Transport and Works Bureau. The deal will also give the MTRC operating rights of the KCRC system for 50 years, as well as development rights over eight lucrative KCRC-controlled properties.

Tsoi bashed both of these terms as gifts in a deal heavily slanted in favor of the MTRC.

Tsoi and City University of Hong Kong professor Li Kui-wai called the 50-year operating period "far too long'' and out of line with terms governing Kowloon Motor Bus and Hong Kong's two power companies.

Li also attacked the government for trying to bury the property development details within the terms of the deal.

But Ho rejected those charges, saying the deal is reasonable and fairly constructed.

"If this deal only benefited one of the two parties, there's no possibility that it would go through the Legislative Council or the minority shareholders,'' he said.

Ho also rebuffed Tsoi's suggestion that the operating rights should last no longer than 20 years, saying railway investment was much higher, and the return on investment much longer, than those in the bus-operating business.

Ko Pak-kwun, a union leader for rail workers, said he was concerned the new company will change terms of employment after the merger is complete, affecting the livelihood of workers.
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Old April 18th, 2006, 02:16 AM   #1446
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MTR signals crackdown on offenders
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Hong Kong Standard

Sweet talk and kind words did not work, so the Mass Transit Railway has decided to hit commuters where it hurts - in the pocket.

Starting Thursday, its "customer care team" are authorized to stop and prosecute commuters who eat or drink on trains or stations, rush into cars when doors are closing or who obstruct passageways with oversized luggage.

MTR's public relations manager, Helen Cheung Yuen-ling, said Sunday the company had tried the more caring, educational and friendly approach to encourage commuters to observe the rules by setting up a customer care team in mid-January.

The team found 8,000 cases of passengers misbehaving, 70 percent of whom ate or drank on trains or in paid areas of stations. Giving them warnings or reminders failed to have any effect.

The company has now told the team to become more aggressive in catching and prosecuting anyone who violates the rules. Under MTR by-laws, anyone caught eating or drinking on trains is liable to be prosecuted with a maximum penalty of a HK$2,000 fine.
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Old April 18th, 2006, 07:06 PM   #1447
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KCRC News Release:
KCRC re-invites expressions of interests for Tuen Mun property development project
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Old April 19th, 2006, 03:00 AM   #1448
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Shenzhen rail dream revealed
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
Hong Kong Standard

MTR Corp chairman Raymond Chi'en Kuo-fung said Tuesday commuters could be shuttling between Shenzhen north and Hong Kong south soon.

Speaking in Shenzhen before the launch of the Shenzhen and Hong Kong Investment Alliance, Chi'en also said that many mainland city governments are now discussing with the MTRC ways in which they could co-operate.

He said the competitive power of the MTRC would become more significant once the Kowloon-Canton Railway Corp merger became a reality.

Since the move will incorporate KCRC's status as a regional rail network into the MTR Corp, it's possible that within 10 years of the merger there may be a direct rail service between Shenzhen and Hong Kong Island.

"We have a 10-year vision. We hope to provide passengers with a direct train service from northern Shenzhen to southern Hong Kong Island. It will be part of MTR Corp's one-stop services of the future," Chi'en said.

MTR Corp last May announced an investment of six billion yuan (HK$5.8 billion) in the construction of phase 2 of Shenzhen Metro Route 4.

When the 16.5-kilometer extension starts operating between Longhua new town and the Huanggang borderpoint in 2009, passengers will be able to take a direct train to Hong Kong.
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Old April 19th, 2006, 04:57 PM   #1449
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Only in HK can trains fail like this - Rail equipment problems are unique: KCRC chief executive
19 April 2006
South China Morning Post

An internal investigation by the KCRC has found that an equipment failure plaguing its East Rail operation was due to uncommon circumstances and was unique to Hong Kong.

KCRC chief executive James Blake, who has spent the Easter holiday studying the technical report, said the cracks discovered in the welding of 258 train components were caused by circumstances that did not occur often in railway systems in other parts of the world.

The problem was unique to Hong Hong and was the result of "a combination of circumstances which are not common", he told journalists yesterday.

The report concluded the problem was "preventable in the future", Mr Blake said. He said the corporation was putting final touches to the report, which he hoped could be made public within 10 days.

On December 21, the KCRC discovered faults in equipment mounting compressors onto trains. Nylon belts were used to stop the compressors falling off. It took two weeks for the corporation to report this to its chairman, Michael Tien Puk-sun, and another day for the government to be informed.

Edmund Leung Kwong-ho, the chairman of a five-man independent panel appointed to review the report, said he agreed that the problem was "preventable in the future {hellip} When we know the root of the problem, of course we can rectify it."

He stopped short of disclosing the root causes of the mistakes, but in an interview with the South China Morning Post in February he said the KCRC should implement new inspection procedures for its rolling stock to ensure any newly fractured components were detected early.

In routine checks, KCRC workers are not required to test every train component but to perform random checks - on only one component in every four carriages.

"In a sampling inspection, there is a chance that workers miss the one with cracks and thus fail to discover the problem," he said.

Maintenance workers did not notice more than 250 cracks in the welding until a mounting device of a compressor snapped on December 21, prompting the use of an advanced inspection method that ascertained the scale of the problem.

After approval by the review panel, the report will require endorsement by the government before being sent to the KCRC's managing board for discussion. Only then would it be made public, probably by Mr Tien, Mr Blake said.

The report will stress that despite the problems, at no point "was public safety compromised".
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Old April 20th, 2006, 09:54 PM   #1450
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Hi everyone,
I have been reading through this one entire thread for a long time and I can't believe there are so many other ppl who admire HK's transit systems! I've actually learned a lot from the messages, and have also made me miss it, having gone last year to HK. Thanks for all the info!
One thing though, somewhere earlier in the original thread, someone said that they "cleaned [the stations] up after the SARS outbreak". Does that mean b4 the stations were dreary and don't have newer items like the tiles and coherent signs?
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Old April 21st, 2006, 12:58 AM   #1451
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Hong Kong MTR's stations have always looked the same. Recent renovations and the installation of automated platform barriers are not related to the SARS crisis.

The signage has always been uniform and was upgraded to newer, larger signs at some point in the past 15 years.
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Old April 21st, 2006, 01:27 AM   #1452
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Oh thanks for clarifying!
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Old April 22nd, 2006, 05:30 AM   #1453
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Critics rail against plans to link HK, Guangzhou
Andrea Chiu
Hong Kong Standard
Saturday, April 22, 2006

Legislators have strongly objected to the government's plans to link Kowloon to Guangzhou through the existing KCRC West Rail, arguing it is inconvenient, economically impractical and incomplete.

Democratic Party chief Lee Wing- tat said the government's proposal does not include financial rates of return nor an indication of the total cost. "This entire project is unacceptable," he said.

At a meeting of the Legislative Council's subcommittee on matters relating to the railway system, the government said Friday it favored developing the much-anticipated Express Rail Link on a shared corridor and not a dedicated one.

Deputy Secretary for the Environment, Transport and Works Thomas Chow Tat-ming told the meeting that the capital costs of the shared corridor option will be significantly lower than that for a dedicated corridor.

He estimated the service will initially handle 50,000 passengers a day but that this number will grow in tandem with the development of the Pearl River Delta.

Chow said the government anticipated eventually developing a dedicated corridor around 2030.

The Executive Council gave its approval for the project in February but legislative councillors have been more critical of the plan.

Democrat Andrew Cheng Kar-foo questioned the need for the government to spend billions of dollars twice if it anticipates there will be no demand for a dedicated rail system until 2030.

Pro-Beijing lawmaker Lau Kong- wah said: "I'm worried that if growth in the mainland is very rapid, we may have to provide another rail service or network."

The lawmakers said that instead of starting off with a shared rail system, it will be better to develop a dedicated corridor from the beginning.

In its report to the subcommittee, the government estimated a dedicated track will cost about 1.5 times more than a shared track. It said the difference will be several billion dollars though it did not give a figure.

The major component of the dedicated corridor will be a 30-kilometer tunnel. If built, the tunnel will be among the longest in the world.

Chow said the shared track option had an economic internal rate of return of about 17 percent while the dedicated track had a return of 15 percent. But legislators said these figures were inconclusive.

Regardless of which option is ultimately adopted, the KCRC has already asked the government for financial support.

Song Dong Wook, assistant professor in transport and logistics management at Hong Kong University, said the government likely opted for the shared corridor because it is less risky. "If the trains share a track, it might be less risky, but at the same time less profitable," he said.

Although a dedicated corridor is financially riskier, and a 30km tunnel has a greater environmental impact, Song said he supported it over a shared corridor. He said there is the demand for an express route and a dedicated track will be more convenient.

If the Express Rail Link shares a track, a trip from West Kowloon to the boundary will take 25 minutes. A more direct route on a dedicated corridor will be reduced to 13 minutes.

The Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link will allow passengers to travel from West Kowloon to Shibi in Guangzhou in 60 minutes on a shared track, and 48 minutes on a dedicated track.

Both tracks cut traveling time from the one hour and 40 minutes trip on the current Kowloon-Guangdong train.

The express trains will depart from a new station in West Kowloon and travel to the Kam Sheung Road station using the KCRC's West Rail tracks, continue north on the Northern Link tracks and travel to Shibi on a new track. From there, travelers will be able to connect to the national rail system.

The earliest possible completion date for the express rail is 2013 for the shared corridor and 2014 for the dedicated corridor.
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Old April 22nd, 2006, 09:52 PM   #1454
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Wow Man. Amazing stuff. I would like to visit there once hopefully near future. My father has already been there though. I hope we have Suburban trains in Mumbai, India. I just hope they have in near future.
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Old April 23rd, 2006, 06:06 PM   #1455
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屯門站項目總投資料80億
22/04/2006



因補地價過高,去年「流標」收場的九鐵屯門站上蓋項目,昨正式邀請發展商遞交次輪意向書。據九鐵新近給予發展商的小冊子中顯示,九鐵期望經覆核後的補地價可於未來兩個月內初步回覆發展商,該項目最新估計的總投資額由之前的95億至100億元,大幅減少15至20%,至逾80億元,按項目總樓面面積約 155.7萬方呎計算,即每方呎成本約5,200元;而測量界預期,新批出補地價金額較之前調低15至20%,方可吸引發展商入標。

市場人士稱,該項目上一次每方呎補地價3,500至3,600元,若是次補地價金額能再調低,項目將對發展商具吸引性。

補地價料調低近兩成
會德豐地產董事黃光耀表示,集團會詳細研究,至於一次過或分期繳付補地價,仍未有定案,況且日後的招標文件內容亦是另一個決定性因素。基營業部總經理謝偉銓則指出,集團將視乎補地價金額才決定競投與否;而新鴻基地產早前則表明對項目感興趣。

市場人士稱,九鐵今次調整項目總投資金額至逾80億元,較之前估算的95億至100億元,大幅減少15億至20億元,估計與補地價金額將會調低有關。中原測量師行聯席董事周文略認為,有關補地價金額相信要調低15至20%,才能吸引更多發展商參與競投。

區內放盤叫價加8%
至於區內市況,中原營業董事方啟明指出,屯門站重邀發展意向,對區內整體規劃及居民住屋環境將帶來正面影響,屯門市中心主要大型屋苑如屯門市廣場及時代廣場等,業主取態強硬,個別業主調高叫價5至8%放售,亦有收窄議價空間,現時平均呎價約2,000至2,500元水平。
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Old April 25th, 2006, 02:20 AM   #1456
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KCRC vows to prosecute East Rail shortcut users
Wendy Leung
Hong Kong Standard
Monday, April 24, 2006

The Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation will prosecute any passengers who try to take shortcuts across the tracks on its East Rail line as the number of such incidents continues to rise.

The company said Sunday it will enforce bylaws allowing for the prosecution of such trespassers.

The operator of the rail line from Hong Kong to the mainland attributed the rise in trespassing in part to the growing number of mainland visitors, many of whom might not know it was illegal to cross the tracks, said Alex Lau Hing-hon, the railway's safety and quality control manager. "Most of those caught crossing the tracks are taking a shortcut to get to the opposite platform, and seem to have no knowledge of the bylaw."

The company will boost its public messages about the illegality of trespassing in the coming fortnight. After that, all trespassers will be prosecuted.

The rail operator said there were 27 cases of trespassing on tracks in 2003, 35 in 2004, 37 last year, and nine in the first three months this year.

In all except the two most recent cases, offenders received verbal warnings.

Out of the nine cases so far this year, four involved tourists from the mainland.

Trespassers face a maximun penalty of up to HK$5,000 in fines and six months in prison.

The KCRC also said Sunday it is considering installing one-meter high screen doors on stations to deal with the problem more effectively.

According to government figures, six people fell accidentally on to the tracks in 2003, five each in 2004 and 2005, and two this year.

There were also three attempted suicides in 2003, and six each in 2004 and 2005.

Deaths resulting from accidental or intentional falls totaled two in 2003, five in 2004 and four in 2005.

KCRC services were disrupted, and the company severely criticized by legislators, earlier this year when an Indonesian tourist was found walking along the line between the Hung Hom and Tsim Sha Tsui East stations.

But Lau said there remained some technical difficulties in installing the doors. "Screen doors cannot be installed too close to the edge of the platforms, because the trains from the mainland are slighter wider than KCRC trains," he said.

The curved platforms, especially those at Mong Kok and University stations, will require a bigger gap between the screen doors and the trains, which might endanger the safety of boarding and alighting passengers.

The company is learning from the experiences of rail operators in Japan and South Korea, which have installed retractable boards to fill in the gap between the platforms and the trains, a KCRC spokesman said.

But again, as the trains from the mainland are larger and the retractable boards are still on trials in Japan and Korea, the company may have to wait some time for a solution, the spokesman said.
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Old April 25th, 2006, 05:03 AM   #1457
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Wow, are they that lazy to just go down the escalator and take it back up? Better safe than sorry, I mean seriously, how many *seconds* can you possibly save? Even when you are at the platform, you still have to wait for the train anyway.
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Old April 25th, 2006, 05:41 AM   #1458
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Hong Kong people are like that. They'll even run for the doors when they begin to close when trains are about to depart, even though they run every 2-4 minutes depending on the time of day.
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Old April 25th, 2006, 04:46 PM   #1459
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline
KCRC vows to prosecute East Rail shortcut users
Wendy Leung
Hong Kong Standard
Monday, April 24, 2006

The Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation will prosecute any passengers who try to take shortcuts across the tracks on its East Rail line as the number of such incidents continues to rise.

The company said Sunday it will enforce bylaws allowing for the prosecution of such trespassers.

The operator of the rail line from Hong Kong to the mainland attributed the rise in trespassing in part to the growing number of mainland visitors, many of whom might not know it was illegal to cross the tracks, said Alex Lau Hing-hon, the railway's safety and quality control manager. "Most of those caught crossing the tracks are taking a shortcut to get to the opposite platform, and seem to have no knowledge of the bylaw."

The company will boost its public messages about the illegality of trespassing in the coming fortnight. After that, all trespassers will be prosecuted.

The rail operator said there were 27 cases of trespassing on tracks in 2003, 35 in 2004, 37 last year, and nine in the first three months this year.

In all except the two most recent cases, offenders received verbal warnings.

Out of the nine cases so far this year, four involved tourists from the mainland.

Trespassers face a maximun penalty of up to HK$5,000 in fines and six months in prison.

The KCRC also said Sunday it is considering installing one-meter high screen doors on stations to deal with the problem more effectively.

According to government figures, six people fell accidentally on to the tracks in 2003, five each in 2004 and 2005, and two this year.

There were also three attempted suicides in 2003, and six each in 2004 and 2005.

Deaths resulting from accidental or intentional falls totaled two in 2003, five in 2004 and four in 2005.

KCRC services were disrupted, and the company severely criticized by legislators, earlier this year when an Indonesian tourist was found walking along the line between the Hung Hom and Tsim Sha Tsui East stations.

But Lau said there remained some technical difficulties in installing the doors. "Screen doors cannot be installed too close to the edge of the platforms, because the trains from the mainland are slighter wider than KCRC trains," he said.

The curved platforms, especially those at Mong Kok and University stations, will require a bigger gap between the screen doors and the trains, which might endanger the safety of boarding and alighting passengers.

The company is learning from the experiences of rail operators in Japan and South Korea, which have installed retractable boards to fill in the gap between the platforms and the trains, a KCRC spokesman said.

But again, as the trains from the mainland are larger and the retractable boards are still on trials in Japan and Korea, the company may have to wait some time for a solution, the spokesman said.
Another reason and another way to indicate that mainland Chinese people have no respect for law and are stupid.

Not all of them are but majority are rude and foul. this is from personal experience but I'm sure I've yet to meet the ones who are nice.
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Old April 26th, 2006, 12:42 PM   #1460
hkth
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From news.gov.hk:
KCRC net profit after tax drops 38.2%
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