IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION
COURT OF APPEAL
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 71 OF 2003
(ON APPEAL FROM HCMP NO. 4191 OF 1998)
Before: Hon Rogers VP, Le Pichon and Yuen JJA in Court
Date of Hearing: 27 January 2005
Date of Judgment: 27 January 2005
J U D G M E N T
Hon Rogers VP:
1. This is an application for leave to appeal to the Court of Final Appeal from a judgment of this court dated 19 November 2004. Theapplication was not made under Section 22(1)(a) of the Court of Final Appeal Ordinance Cap. 484 because the value of the land doesnot come to that amount. This court has indicated it is not prepared to make orders under Section 22(1)(b) on paper. It is necessary,where there are matters of great general and public importance, that the applications are made in court.
2. One of the reasons for the application to have to be made in court is that it is important for all parties to concentrate their mindson exactly what the question is. Unfortunately, the issues were ventilated in general terms. It is quite clear that this is a matterwhich should go to the Court of Final Appeal because not only was this court divided on the effect of the New Territories Leases (Extension) Ordinance Cap. 150 but there are conflicting decisions at first instance. In those circumstances it is important that the effect of this Ordinanceshould be decided once and for all.
3. Prior to the hearing today, the question had not been fully formulated and we asked that that should be done. We were not particularlyhappy with the formulation that was presented to us at short notice. So, we ourselves have formulated a question in the course ofa very short adjournment and with the difficulty of not having been able to consider it over any lengthy period.
4. The question that we have formulated is as follows:
5. On that basis, this court gives leave to appeal to the Court of Final Appeal on the usual terms, which we understand have been agreedbetween the parties, that security for costs in the sum of $400,000 be provided and that there be a stay of execution pending determinationof the matter in the Court of Final Appeal.
Mr Andrew Mak, instructed by Messrs Chan & Associates, for the Plaintiff/Applicant
Mr Edward Fan, instructed by Messrs Yeung & Chan, for the Defendants/Respondents