Sun Hung Kai Properties confirmed yesterday it is joining up with Henderson Land to create an area for a mainlander- targeted shopping project near the Hong Kong-Shenzhen border.
A 420,000-square-foot site owned by Henderson Land and SHKP in Yuen Long near the Lok Ma Chau checkpoint is the place in focus. Kwok said the two firms would provide the land at a nominal HK$1 rent for a non-profit foundation that would run the project in the interests of all.
Henderson Land chairman Lee Shau-kee will help fund the foundation and setting-up costs according to news sources.
Legislator Wong Ting-kwong, who represents the import-export sector, said a proposal for the project will be with the Town Planning Board this month and approval is “highly likely.”
The site could be granted by May and work started in June, Wong added. The facility should be operational before October’s National Day holiday with the shopping center being modeled on London’s Boxpark, where containers are converted into stores.
The project is an attempt to ease constant frictions between Hong Kong residents and the mainland visitors that make daily cross boarder shopping trips to Hong Kong. However, Ronald Leung Kam-shing, a spokesman for the North District Parallel Imports Concern Group, said: “The problem will not go away as the project is in Hong Kong.”