Hong Kong's position as Asia's world city is built on its role as the gateway to the mainland of China and a hub for business in the Asia-Pacific region.
With a land area of 1 110 square kilometres of which about 24 per cent is built up, Hong Kong has a population of about 7.5 million. Every day, over 12 million passenger journeys, i.e. about 90% of the total passenger journeys, are made on public transport system which includes railways, buses, minibuses, trams, taxis and ferries.
With a growing population and continuous development, moving people and goods around in Hong Kong has always been a great challenge. Hong Kong's roads are among the most heavily used in the world, with about 815 000 vehicles on 2 150 kilometres of roads. There are about 379 licensed vehicles for every kilometre of road, and the dense development and difficult terrain make it increasingly challenging to provide additional road capacity to meet the traffic demands.
While Government has been expanding the road and railway transport infrastructure to cope with the increasing travel demand for economic, social and leisure needs, it is becoming more and more difficult, expensive and environmentally unfriendly to implement such new projects. We need to find ways to maximise the capacity and to enhance the performance of our existing transport system.