Administration makes good use of Net

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 08 June, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 08 June, 2000, 12:00am

I refer to the article headlined, 'SAR lags behind in Web wizardry' (South China Morning Post, May 13), in which Professor Ian Holliday discussed Web usage in the Hong Kong SAR Government.

The SAR Government has been making substantial efforts to promote government policies and services of departments through the Internet. The Chief Executive's office, the Chief Secretary for Administration's office, the Financial Secretary's office and all policy bureaus and departments have set up their homepages, with Chinese and English versions, providing essential and updated information to members of the public.

Great importance is attached to communication with the public via electronic means. E-mail contacts are provided on every government homepage for Web users to make inquiries, voice opinions, or lodge complaints.

Anyone who wishes to send his views to the Government can always do so through the Internet.

Since January, about 30 major government press conferences have been broadcast live on the government homepage. This initiative has helped to increase the transparency of government decisions and allow it to better explain its actions.

To facilitate public access to government services through the Internet, computers with an Internet connection are available at selected District Offices, community centres and halls for use by members of the public. A total of 100 'Cyber Points' personal computers have been installed in community halls and centres to provide the public with access to the Interactive Government Services Directory as well as other non-government Internet services. Another 100 computers are being installed; 28 Cyber Points equipped with a special device for use by the blind and the visually impaired will be installed tomorrow. Internet computer facilities are also available in public libraries and some post offices.

It was also mentioned in the article that there is no equivalent to the kiosks placed all over Australia to ensure everyone has access job information.

Members of the public may wish to note that they now enjoy an even more convenient access to the interactive employment services of the Labour Department through the Internet, for example, via the interactive government services directory Web site (

Moreover, when the electronic service delivery scheme providing government services online is launched in October, there will be 100 public information kiosks installed in convenient public locations which allow members of the public to access various types of electronic government services, including the search for job vacancies online.

I hope this helps readers know more about the SAR Government's efforts in making use of the Internet to publicise its policies and services and to interact with members of the public.

FANNIE KONG Principal Information Officer Internet Resource Centre Information Services Department