The New Frontier Closed Area Boundary
The coverage of the Frontier Closed Area (FCA) is specified in the Schedule to the Frontier Closed Area Order (Cap. 245 sub. Leg.A) made under section 36 of the Public Order Ordinance.
The Government announced in January 2008 the plan to substantially reduce the land coverage of the Frontier Closed Area (FCA) from about 2,800 hectares to about 400 hectares. The reduced FCA would cover only the Police’s boundary patrol road and the land to its north, the boundary-crossing facilities, Sha Tau Kok Town, the Starling Inlet, and parts of Mai Po. The exercise seeks to reduce the FCA to the minimum necessary for the protection of public order and boundary security, obviating the need for local residents and visitors alike to obtain Closed Area Permits to access the area.
The FCA reduction is implemented in three stages. The first and second stages of the FCA reduction, covering the entirety of the boundary except the part between River Indus (Ng Tung River) and Lin Ma Hang, were implemented on 15 February 2012 and 10 June 2013 respectively.
Following the completion of construction works of boundary patrol road between River Indus (Ng Tung River) and Lin Ma Hang, the third stage of FCA reduction takes effect on 4 January 2016, in which more than 900 hectares of land are excised from the existing FCA. This also brings the whole FCA reduction exercise to completion.
The Police call on the public to be mindful of the new boundary of the FCA after its official opening in order to avoid inadvertent entry into the Closed Area. Any person who enters or leaves the FCA without a valid Closed Area Permit shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine of $5,000 and to imprisonment for 2 years, pursuant to section 38 of the Public Order Ordinance (Cap. 245, Laws of Hong Kong).
People should pay attention to the following hiking routes:
- The section of Lin Ma Hang Road between Wang Lek and Sha Tau Kok is a Frontier Closed Area. Except with a valid Closed Area Permit, hikers entering Lin Ma Hang Village are not allowed to leave via the said section of Lin Ma Hang Road. (Hikers are advised to end the journey at the Kwong Shan Police Lookout and follow the same route back to Robin’s nest);
- From Robin’s Nest and Hung Fa Chai to Tam Shui Hang Tsuen or Shan Tsui Tsuen (Upon arriving at the intersection 50Q KK126963 / 50Q KK127964, hikers should head eastward for Tam Shui Hang Tsuen or Shan Tsui Tsuen. It is not recommended to take the northern trail towards Pak Kung Au because there is no known path to proceed to Tam Shui Hang Tsuen or Shan Tsui Tsuen); and
- From Ma Tseuk Ling or Man Uk Pin via Robin’s Nest and Hung Fa Chai to Lin Ma Hang Village, Tam Shui Hang Tsuen or Shan Tsui Tsuen (Please refer to the recommendations set out in (i) and (ii)).
Given that some of the newly opened areas are adjacent to some popular hiking trails, FCA warning signs were set up near these trails to remind hikers of inadvertent entry. For the new boundary of the FCA, please refer to ANNEX.