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Hong Kong Government Making Strides In Implementing IT Strategy

by Mary Swire,, Hong Kong

14 November 2003

Giving an overview of the Hong Kong government’s recent achievements in e-government and e-business development, Director of Information Technology Services, Alan Wong Chi-kong, told the 9th Joint International Computer Conference in Zhuhai that great strides have been made in the SAR's IT strategy.

As at the end of June this year, the Government has provided e-options for 86% of public services amenable to electronic delivery. It is confident of achieving its aim of 90% by the end of the year.

The smart identity card launched this June is a major component of e-government strategy. Offering increased security and various value-added applications, the new ID card supports e-business and e-government transactions.

To provide the logistics industry with a neutral and open electronic platform for information and data exchange, the Government is exploring a Digital Trade and Transportation Network. It is hoped that operating costs can be lowered by improvements in the speed and reliability of information transmission.

The Electronic Service Delivery Scheme has been well-received, logging more than 3.5 million transactions since its launch at the end of 2000. The scheme offers 170 kinds of Government services online and has significantly improved quality and efficiency of delivery.

"The Government plans to join up a number of related cross-departmental services with a view to providing the public with more direct access and better search functions. Projects under study include the Business Entry Portal, the Property Information Hub and the Integrated Criminal Justice System," Mr Wong said.

To foster the growth of the wireless and mobile communications industry in Hong Kong, the Government is setting up a Wireless Solutions Development Centre at the Cyberport where software developers can test their products and obtain industry news.

"The Government has always supported the use of IT in commerce and industry to enhance productivity and operational efficiency," Mr Wong said.

To encourage IT vendors to participate in government IT projects, the Government has adopted a vigorous outsourcing strategy. Information and business-matching services are also offered via supporting organisations to help vendors expand into overseas markets.

With the signing of the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement, 18 sectors including telecommunications services will enjoy closer trading ties with the Mainland. The Commerce, Industry and Technology Bureau is discussing with the industry a mechanism to strengthen co-operation between the IT and communications industries on both sides of the boundary.

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