JOS Technology Group, the information technology subsidiary of Jardine Pacific, is cautious about the outlook for its sector in Hong Kong despite double-digit growth in sales during the first half of the year. Group director Thomas Wan Yiu-ming yesterday said the group, which distributes telecommunications equipment and services, had seen sales growth in the mainland outpace Hong Kong. 'The computer market [in Hong Kong] is under pressure and we can see a slowdown in sales for private users,' he said. 'We wish to extend the mainland market to offset this slowdown.' He declined to quantify the sales growth, beyond describing it as 'double digit'. Sales of computers to institutional buyers such as the government and commercial clients remained strong, he said. The group sold 90,000 computers to institutional buyers last year, accounting for about 50 per cent of sales. The group has secured a dealership facility with NEC to distribute its keyline telephone systems and fax machines. Mr Wan said this was a strategic alliance and he looked forward to a long-term relationship. 'At the moment, we distribute NEC's products in our Hong Kong and Macau retailers,' he said. 'But there is a possibility of extending our co-operation to the mainland and Southeast Asia.' NEC Hong Kong assistant general manager of business communication group Akira Takahashi said the alliance enabled NEC to further explore the market especially while the yen was at favourable levels.