Hong Kong’s deputy CIO talks up latest tech initiatives

The Deputy Government CIO Wong Chi Kwong shared some of the latest developments in the “Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint”.

The SAR government announced the first “Hong Kong Smart City Blueprint” (“Blueprint”) in December 2017.

The “Blueprint” sets four goals in order to build Hong Kong into a more advanced and more livable smart city that will facilitate the people and business. The “Blueprint” proposes 76 measures under six main areas, of which more than 40 have been completed in phases.

The public can search for real-time traffic and transportation information anytime and anywhere through “HKeMobility” to facilitate travel planning. As of the end of June this year, the cumulative number of downloads of “Hong Kong Mobility” has exceeded 2.6 million, with an average daily click rate of about 80,000. At the same time, we added a large amount of traffic data through open data, including real-time arrival data of franchised buses, MTR (Airport Express, Tung Chung Line, Tseung Kwan O Line, West Rail Line and Light Rail Line) and 165 green minibuses.

It is expected that by 2022, the remaining 400 private minibuses will be released, allowing the industry to develop more innovative applications. Traffic data is very popular. Last year (2020), real-time arrival data of public transportation was downloaded more than 3 billion times.

In terms of “smart living”, under the “Wi-Fi Connecting City” plan, the number of free public Wi-Fi hotspots under the “Wi-Fi.HK” brand has increased to more than 41,000. In addition, the “FPS” fast payment system launched by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority in September 2018 has recorded more than 8.2 million account registrations and processed approximately 283 million real-time transactions in more than two years after its launch. The transaction volume is approximately HK$3,100 billion and RMB 55 billion.

In terms of “smart government”, we announced an open data policy in October 2018 to promote government departments and encourage public and private organizations to open more data in machine-readable format for free use by the public. At present, the government has provided a total of more than 4,670 data sets on the “Data.gov.hk” website (data.gov.hk). The government launched a government procurement policy that supports innovation in April 2019 and established a “Smart Government Innovation Laboratory” (“Innovation Laboratory”). I will give a further introduction on Open Data and the “Innovation Lab” later.

In terms of digital infrastructure, we have invested more than HK$900 million in various projects in the past three years, including the launch of a new generation of government cloud and big data analysis platform in September last year to improve operational efficiency and enhance network security; and in December last year The “Smart Convenience” platform was launched this month to facilitate users to use government and public and private online services, conduct online transactions, and make legally valid digital signatures through the platform.

The government released the “Blueprint 2.0” in December last year, proposing more than 130 smart city measures, with the purpose of allowing citizens to better appreciate the benefits of innovation and technology. “Blueprint 2.0” added a new chapter to make good use of innovative technology to deal with the epidemic, and proposed the concept of “Smart Village Pilot Project”.

In addition to the strong support from the business community, today’s summit forum was also attended by many tertiary students. In order to provide business and young people with more opportunities for innovation and technology development, I will introduce some of the government’s measures to facilitate business and support the development of innovation and technology for young people.

He also mentioned the government’s open data policy just now. The open data policy promotes innovation and promotes the digital economy. At present, there are more than 4,000 data sets on the “Data.gov.hk” website (data.gov.hk) provided by about 112 public and private organizations, and there are more than 1,800 application programming interfaces.

“Open data will help the industry develop more innovative applications, including public transportation and weather-related applications,” said Wong. “The number of downloads of our open data is quite staggering, reaching 10 billion times in 2020, or 30 million times a day.”

The Office of CIO Hong Kong also established the “Smart Government Innovation Laboratory” in 2019 to help government departments accelerate the introduction of IT application solutions, improve the quality and efficiency of public services, and create more business opportunities for start-ups and SMEs.

“In response to the business needs of various departments, the Innovation Lab communicates with the innovation and technology industry, searches for suitable technology solutions from the industry, arranges theme workshops for related business needs, and arranges testing and proof of concept for suitable solutions,” said Wong. “Since its establishment, the Innovation Lab has held 10 technical forums on different topics, attracting more than 3,330 participants, involving more than 60 different policy bureaus and departments, as well as 170 public and private organizations and enterprises.”




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