Simon Lee: Carrie Lam shows better understanding over government apparatus in policy address

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According to Simon Lee, convenor of the Sharing Economy Alliance Hong Kong, Carrie Lam seems to show a higher level of awareness on innovation and technology than her predecessor.

As Carrie Lam published her first policy address yesterday, HT looks into different reactions from the public. This time, HT interviewed Simon Lee, convenor of the Sharing Economy Alliance, on his views on the new policy address.

According to Lee, Carrie Lam’s policy address marks a shift in government attitude towards laws and regulations regarding innovation and technology, from insistent on outdated regulations to self-examination. “We are pleased that the chief executive recognised some laws and regulations are outdated and are weighing down the development of innovation and technology in Hong Kong,” he tells HT. “It is great that she has decided to re-examine the current regulations.”

Lee welcomes the establishment of the Chief Executive’s Council of Advisers on Innovation and Strategic Development. He hopes that the new government will be more open to dialogue and be fair with various parties on sharing economy.

“The government should prove itself unbiased towards certain stakeholders with vested interests,” Lee notes.

However, in view of an “ambitious” policy blueprint, Lee expresses concerns over whether some policies can be implemented shortly, or at all.

“This policy address looks more like a five-year plan than an annual plan, which means that some policies might not get implemented in a year from now,” he says. “There are directions but no timetables, no deadlines.”

That said, Lee points out that in comparison to her predecessor, the new chief executive tends to include more details on the implementation of her policies.

“Her housing portfolio is very strong, and for every item in the policy address, she details how precisely are the policies going to be implemented,” Lee explains. “While CY Leung tended to list out directions without details on implementation and seemed to expect his subordinates to carry out the policies automatically for him.”

“Compared to CY Leung, Carrie Lam clearly knows the government apparatus better,” he adds.