Monday 19th March 2007

Dear Reader,

More people voted in our MPF opinion poll (857) than will vote in Sunday's Chief Executive election (796 at most), and unlike the CE election, anyone could vote. Full results are on the site, but in summary, 95% agreed that employees should be free to choose their own trustee and fund provider, while 65% were opposed to raising the maximum relevant income. 50% were in favour of scrapping the system, while 50% said no to that, perhaps fearing that they wouldn't get the benefit from the employer. However, when the government makes something mandatory, it really ought to have a lot more support than that. The Government would like us all to brush our teeth properly and smile at tourists, but neither is mandatory.

The Movie Fund poll is still running, and will close at 18:00 HK time on Friday, so Vote now! Should the Government invest your money in movie production? Your PIN number is shown at the top of this e-mail.

Now, on to today's oil slick...

Veto CNOOC loans to parent (19-Mar-07)
CNOOC just never seems to learn, and they are back to seek a new approval from minority shareholders to lend money to a parent vehicle. We call on investors to vote it down, and send a message to China, Inc. that the practice is unacceptable and we will not allow a repeat of the Japanese keiretsu/main bank system.

Lights, camera...budget! (9-Mar-07)
We look at the recent history of HK Government intervention in the movie industry, the land grants involved, and the proposal to throw HK$300m of public money into private movie production. We urge LegCo to cut this scene from Hong Kong's script. Tell them what you think in our opinion poll.

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David M Webb