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Ma Shi Chau Special Area designates
Friday, April 9, 1999

Ma Shi Chau has been designated as a special area following approval of the Chief Executive in Council. The designation order was published in the Gazette today (Friday).

A spokesman for the Agriculture and Fisheries Department (AFD) said: " Ma Shi Chau Special Area is designated as the territory's 15th special area because its geological and ecological features are of high conservation and education value.

"This special area will now be managed by the Country and Marine Parks Authority and conserved and protected under the Country Parks and Special Areas Regulations.

He pointed out that the special area comprised four islands in Tolo Harbour, namely Ma Shi Chau, Centre Island, Yeung Chau and an unnamed island near Sam Mun Tsai New Village.

"This special area is well-known for its rich geological features, fossils and nesting site for egrets, and is also one of the rare locations in Hong Kong where outcrops of sedimentary rocks are well displayed," said the spokesman.

"The rocks here are believed to be amongst the oldest of their kind in the territory and the rich contents of marine fossils embedded contribute significantly to the understanding of the geological history of Hong Kong."

The spokesman noted that the area was identified as one of the potential country park sites in the Territorial Development Strategy Review in 1993, while Ma Shi Chau and Centre Island had been registered as Sites of Special Scientific Interest since 1982.

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