The MTR’s new South Island Line opened on Wednesday, with the first train leaving South Horizons on Ap Lei Chau for Admiralty at 5.55am.
Southern District councillor, Lo Kin-hei, was one of those who rode the first train. He said residents in his district are happy with the quicker journey time into the city.
But he expressed concern about congestion at the Admiralty interchange, especially when Ocean Park closes each day, putting extra pressure on the evening rush hour.
Lo told RTHK that residents were also concerned that some bus services may be cancelled.
South Horizons resident, surnamed Pang, said his journey time to Admiralty has been cut short by at least 30 minutes compared to when he had to take a bus, and said he would most likely switch to taking the MTR from now on.
He also said that he’s not concerned about the safety of the driverless trains.
“It seems absolutely fantastic. It’s a nice train. Everything seems to be going very smoothly… Many trains in western countries like England have driverless trains. I think it’s perfectly safe,” he said.
Currency policy is a top priority of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration in creating a favorable business environment for Japanese companies, the country’s top government spokesman told the Nikkei newspaper in an interview that ran on Tuesday.
“It’s extremely important to create an environment where Japanese companies can (smoothly) set business plans,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga was quoted as saying, adding that currency policy was an “important factor” in the government’s handling of economic policy.
Suga said the government has taken “various crisis management steps” to arrest unwelcome yen rises that hurt Japan’s exporters, such as creating a meeting of Ministry of Finance, Financial Services Agency and Bank of Japan bureaucrats to discuss exchange rate moves.
“We have a very strong interest” in currency moves, he said.
The Nikkei did not say when the interview was conducted.
Japanese government officials have repeatedly issued verbal warnings to market players against pushing up the yen too much when the currency spiked earlier this year.
But they have been silent recently as a broad dollar uptrend, driven by expectations of steady interest rate hikes by the U.S. Federal Reserve, helps weaken the yen.