Sunday, October 18, 2009

香港政府二零零九至一零年施政報告:【策創新天】 / Government of Hong Kong "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together"

Below are my comments posted at Fresh Designer's blog site regarding "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together" published by the Government of Hong Kong.

OK, it took me abt 30 minutes to skim the English version of the Policy Address 2009-10 (while watching CSI on TV). So, the following comments are based on a less-than-cursory review of the above-mentioned document.

* I agree with you the focus on「燈泡事件」is "gotcha" politics and media sensationalism, something that really distracts the public away from in-depth debates on the substance and merit of the Policy Address.

* The idea of a knowledge-based economy is fine except it is perhaps 12-15 years late compared to the western economies. But again, if China's industries are still very much in the development stage, then it is better late than never for HK to take advantage of the late-start and try to beat the other more "matured" competitors.

* With respect to the six "new" target industries (in addition to the 4 existing pillar sectors), I do not get a good sense whether the development policy is demand- or supply-driven. I can only assume that the demands will come from Mainland (esp the southern regions) and HK is supplying the technologies and know-how. However, mainlanders will "buy" only if HK has a good branding strategy to go along with each target industry (apart from value for money). HK's film/cultural industry may have a good start because of known past successes. But I am not so sure abt the Environmental Industry and the Education Industry. I believe success for these two will be more regional than national, let alone international. The Testing and Certification Services is an interesting proposal. It is opportune to offer solutions to improve China's tainted reputations (pun intended). But, will this service be linked to ASME, ISO, and all the other internationally recognized standard associations/processes? And, how will HK help the Chinese producers with complying with WTO labelling rules and product safety regulatory regimes of other bilateral and multilateral organizations, as well as the foreign markets? More importantly, I would submit that the revitalization of the "Made-in-China" branding effort will not succeed solely based on the Testing and Certification Services of Hong Kong (to me as a consumer, it's still made-in-China and certified by China).

* The policy's focus on "Progressive Society" is good, esp the part on mental health, given the dense population, little personal space and stressed life-style of the HK society.

* Based on comments from bloggers and on-line media, it appears the govt still has a long way to go in gaining the public's trust and support. Since I do not live in HK, I am not up-to-date on the dynamics btwn the government and the governed. Perhaps, in addition to "National Education", the HK govt should start in its own backyard first with getting the ppl on side !!!

So much for now from the "peanut gallery".

References:

* Government of Hong Kong "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together" http://www.policyaddress.gov.hk/09-10/eng/docs/policy.pdf

* 香港政府二零零九至一零年施政報告:【策創新天】 http://www.policyaddress.gov.hk/09-10/chi/index.html

* Fresh Designer's blog article: http://freshdesigner.blogspot.com/2009/10/blog-post_18.html

4 comments:

新鮮人 said...

微豆你談及的主要是六大產業的可行性,
這成功與否對香港將來的發展有很大的影響,
但現在還是未知之數,
就是所謂六大產業是否選對也不能肯定,
這要時間來証明了!

我所擔心的反而是貧窮的問題,
根據早前一些報告指出,
回歸十年來香港的生產總值增加了30-40%,
但貧窮人口卻由十多萬急增致二十多萬,
這反映出大量財富只往有錢人手上留去,
亦同時看到政府的政策有偏向的跡象,
但在這份施政報告中,
我們確實找不到多少為低下貧窮階層謀生路的計劃,
這是令人非常之失望!

政府時常說搞好六大工業就可以解決失業問題,
但這所謂交工業根本不是一般低技術人仕可做的,
結果只會造另一個讓大商人賺多錢的機會,
這無疑和以往"偏重大商家"的經濟政策毫無分別!
這個政府實在太自以為是,
根本没有花氣力去真正了解低下階層的問題,
高官們只是高高在上的自話自說,
特首那種剛愎自用性格更没有助他完全良好的政策,
我對這個廢柴政府已經心灰意冷,
她們實在令人太傷心了!

微豆 Haricot said...

新鮮人:

>> ... 微豆你談及的主要是六大產業的可行性,這成功與否對香港將來的發展有很大的影響,但現在還是未知之數,就是所謂六大產業是否選對也不能肯定,這要時間來証明了!
* Some more comments to add: In order to measure success/failure down the road, one needs to: (a) Define in the planning stage, what success will look like in the future; and (b) Be accountable for cost and results. Policy-makers should always focus on delivery of results instead of on processes and activities. Milestone achievements should be announced publicly at regular intervals over the duration of each initiative. Internal audit is a must for all large-scale pubic projects.

>> ... 回歸十年來香港的生產總值增加了30-40%,但貧窮人口卻由十多萬急增致二十多萬,這反映出大量財富只往有錢人手上留去,亦同時看到政府的政策有偏向的跡象,
* I am not disputing your figures but surely the middle-class must have gained some wealth and benefits too.
* I agree that the govt must deal with the poverty issue.

>> ... 政府時常說搞好六大工業就可以解決失業問題,但這所謂交工業根本不是一般低技術人仕可做的,結果只會造另一個讓大商人賺多錢的機會,這無疑和以往"偏重大商家"的經濟政策毫無分別!
* One of the main tenets of capitalism is to create wealth at the top while benefiting those at the bottom through the labour market. Now, the number and type of jobs created will depend very much on the kinds of knowledge-based industry. For examples: In China, unskilled villagers have been providing the labour force to sort out recycled electronics (but at great peril to the health and environment of the whole community). A company that manufactures pollution control equipment will need a supply chain of skilled and semi-skilled labourers as well. But let's face it, unskilled, uneducated labourers will always be at a disadvantage and that is a fact of life in HK as well as in Canada and other parts of the world. One of the long-term solutions is to make sure the next generations are given the opportunity to attain higher education so they will break the vicious cycle of poverty and become self-sustained. Welfare and social-assistance are necessary but not sufficient conditions to solve the poverty problem of a society.

>> ... 這個政府實在太自以為是,根本没有花氣力去真正了解低下階層的問題,高官們只是高高在上的自話自說,特首那種剛愎自用性格更没有助他完全良好的政策,
* Again, it all comes down to results and accountability. Who are the people responsible for making sure government officials and the CEO are doing their jobs and delivering results? If things are not working, is it a structural problem (e.g. the governance model) or a people problem (e.g. the incumbents)? Do you need structural solutions, people solutions, or both? And, what are factors that need to be considered (political reality, readiness for changes, timeline, pace of change, civil maturity of population, values and culture of a society, cost/benefits, risk assessment and mitigations, etc)? As they say" The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Changes are good if they are well planned/implemented and are for the better.

新鮮人 said...

對於貧富懸的問題,
不反對政府幫手助興上流工業,
也不反對適當改善社會保障,
但遠水不能救近火,
要低下階層自給自足,
政府非要從低處著手不可,
而最重要的是要多和低下階層接觸和理解,
而不是高高在上的閉門作車,
好明顯香港政府做不到這點,
所以才會民怨沸騰!

微豆 Haricot said...

新鮮人: I totally agree with you that govt policies should not be made inside ivory towers completely devoid of reality.

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