On his visit to Sai Kung District today (April 29), the Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr Nicholas W Yang, toured a company specialising in energy-efficient building products and was briefed on the development progress of the Data Technology Hub (DT Hub) and the Advanced Manufacturing Centre (AMC) in Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate. He also visited a secondary school and met with members of the Sai Kung District Council (SKDC).
Accompanied by the Chairman of the SKDC, Mr George Ng, and the District Officer (Sai Kung), Mr David Chiu, Mr Yang went to Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate. He toured the manufacturing plant of an energy-efficient building products company which employs plastic extrusion technology in insulating products for use in doors, windows and facades. Its Tseung Kwan O plant focuses mainly on high-end precision manufacturing while the mass production process takes place on the Mainland.
Representatives of the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTPC) then gave an update on the progress of the DT Hub and the AMC. The two infrastructural projects are being developed to promote re-industrialisation, targeting for completion in 2020 and 2022 respectively. The DT Hub will provide purpose-designed infrastructure for the data technology and telecommunications services industry while the AMC will foster smart production and advanced assembly of high value-added manufacturing industries and cover extended activities such as research and development, logistics support, prototyping and design.
Noting that re-industrialisation aims to attract high value-added, high-technology and less land-intensive industries to Hong Kong, Mr Yang said it will help promote diversified economic development and create quality employment opportunities for innovation and technology (I&T) talent. To expedite re-industrialisation, the Government will provide an additional allocation of $2 billion to the HKSTPC to identify suitable land in industrial estates for building production facilities required by the dedicated manufacturing sector in order to support more manufacturers in launching operations in Hong Kong. A $2 billion Re-industrialisation Funding Scheme will also be established to subsidise manufacturers, on a matching basis, to set up smart production lines in Hong Kong. The Government will consult the Panel on Commerce and Industry of the Legislative Council next month before seeking funding approval from the Finance Committee, with a view to implementing the initiatives in the second half of this year.
Mr Yang then proceeded to QualiEd College which is a participating school of the Enriched IT Activities Programme. He toured the Dream Laboratory to get a grasp of students' I&T learning experiences and fruitful results, including the integration of virtual reality technology and aerial photography in geography class and awards obtained in an international programming robot challenge. Mr Yang had a chat with teachers, students and parents and listened to their views and experiences gained in these activities.
Since the introduction of the Enriched IT Activities Programme to secondary schools in 2015/16, the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer has subsidised more than 140 secondary schools to organise IT-related extra-curricular activities for inspiring students' interest and creativity in information technology.
Hong Kong has been vigorously developing I&T in recent years and thirsting for talent. Given the encouraging responses, we decided to go further and expand the programme. We will launch a $500 million IT Innovation Lab in Secondary Schools initiative so as to nurture more new I&T talent," said Mr Yang.
The IT Innovation Lab in Secondary Schools initiative is open for some 500 publicly-funded secondary schools on a voluntary basis for organising IT-related extra-curricular activities. Each school will receive a maximum funding of $1 million in the coming three school years to upgrade IT equipment and organise related activities.
The last stop of the district visit was the Hong Kong Velodrome where Mr Yang met with members of the SKDC to exchange views on I&T matters and district issues.