Question by the Hon Chan Chun-ying :
The Chief Executive pointed out in the Policy Address delivered in October last year that smart city development could improve people’s daily lives and make Hong Kong a more liveable city. In order to develop Hong Kong into a smart city, the Government would invest $700 million to push ahead with three infrastructure projects: providing an eID for all Hong Kong residents, launching a pilot Multi-functional Smart Lampposts scheme at selected urban locations, and reforming the development technology of e-Government systems and building a big data analytics platform. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:
(1) whether it has drawn up (i) a definition for “liveable city” and (ii) the criteria for assessing the liveability of a city; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that;
(2) whether it has drawn up timetables for implementing the aforesaid three infrastructure projects; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that; and
(3) whether it has plans to invite commercial organisations to collaborate on the research, development and application of the eID system, so that the system will support the services provided by public and private organisations; if so, of the details; if not, the reasons for that?
Reply by the Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr Nicholas W Yang :
My reply to the various parts of the question is as follows:
(1) The Government published the Smart City Blueprint for Hong Kong in December 2017, outlining the vision and mission to build Hong Kong as a world-class smart city. It also maps out development plans in the next five years, providing a clear and specific direction for smart city development in Hong Kong. Smart city development is an evolving subject. Different cities formulate different smart city development goals and measures having regard to their special circumstances. We will closely monitor the latest development on smart city and make reference to relevant indicators or key performance indicators to assist us in assessing our work and progress.
(2) We briefed the Panel on Information Technology and Broadcasting of the Legislative Council on March 12, 2018 about the details of implementing the three smart city key infrastructure projects. We plan to seek funding approval of the Finance Committee in mid-2018 with an aim to commission the new eID system and the Next Generation GovCloud and Big Data Analytics Platform by 2020. Funding for implementing the three-year Multi-functional Smart Lampposts pilot scheme will be sought in phases in accordance with the established procedures for public works projects. We expect about 50 smart lampposts under the first phase of the pilot scheme will come into operation progressively by mid-2019.
(3) We will actively promote eID to public and commercial organisations, and explore potential applications and development direction of eID in different electronic and online services. We issued a Request for Information on the eID project on March 16 to solicit information from relevant sectors and professional bodies to explore the technical solutions, applications and development direction of eID for various e-services. We will make technical provisions and provide Application Programming Interfaces for e-service providers, including government bureaux/departments and public/private organisations, thus making identity verification and digital signing by different systems simple with the use of eID. When designing the eID system, we will adopt open architecture and modular design to allow flexibility for system upgrade and expansion to support future services to be provided by public and private organisations.