Speaking at a press conference where the theme was "Review and Outlook," Lam said the SAR administration would continue to uphold its constitutional responsibility.

"Our target is to start discussions and consultations regarding the enactment of Basic Law article 23 within this term," Lam said. Her government will "lay out details" of the legislation but she is "not optimistic" that legislating article 23 can be done before her term ends in June.

"But many newly-elected lawmakers expressed their intention to cooperate I welcome that, but I would still attach importance to a more thorough discussion in society before we enact the law."

Former secretary for security and New People's Party vice chairman Lai Tung-kwok, also a legislator-elect through the Election Committee constituency, said he hoped the legislation could be passed in the first year of his term, calling it a primary task.

Lai said the social environment calls for it as the "black-clad violence" in 2019 allowed Hongkongers to learn the importance of national security but the fine print must be easy to understand.

Lam noted that she plans to give lawmakers a sneak peek of the government-restructuring proposal in the first Legislative Council meeting on January 12 before hammering out details by the end of March.

Announced in her policy address in October, the proposal includes setting up a new cultural, sports and tourism bureau and revamping the Innovation Technology, Transport and Housing and Home Affairs bureaus.

Newly-elected lawmakers threw their weight behind the proposal yesterday, with the Liberal Party's Lee Chun-keung saying he would focus on how the restructure can cut "red tape" and solve housing problems.

Stanley Li Sai-wing from the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong said the restructuring will increase efficiency.

It is rare for Lam to hold a press conference to review her past year and preview the next as she used to tape the reviews beforehand - fueling speculation that she was going to run for reelection.

Lam, however, sidestepped questions as to whether she would seek a second five-year term, saying there was still time before nominations open next month for the March 27 chief executive election.

She also voiced optimism on a border reopening, citing SAR success in stamping out Covid-19 outbreaks as Hong Kong's infection count remains low. But one of the government's primary tasks remains driving up vaccination rates.

"As of Wednesday, around 10 million doses have been administered and there are only 69.1 percent of people who have received both doses," Lam said.

Also reviewing the past year was Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po, who posted a video on Facebook saying he is grateful that the society bounced back and he could feel the public's happiness after the consumption vouchers were distributed.