Author Archives: hksar gov

Company fined for operating unlicensed guesthouse

     A company was fined $12,000 at the Kowloon City Magistrates’ Courts today (June 14) for contravening the Hotel and Guesthouse Accommodation Ordinance.
     The courts heard that in August 2016, officers of the Office of the Licensing Authority (OLA), Home Affairs Department, inspected a suspected unlicensed guesthouse in Pat Heung in Yuen Long. The OLA officers posed as lodgers and successfully rented a room in the guesthouse on a daily basis.
     According to the OLA’s records, the guesthouse did not possess a licence under the Ordinance on the day of inspection. The company responsible for operating the premises was charged with contravening section 5(1) of the Ordinance.
     A department spokesman stressed that operating or managing an unlicensed guesthouse is a criminal offence and will lead to a criminal record. Upon conviction, the offender is liable to a maximum fine of $200,000 and two years’ imprisonment.
     The spokesman appealed to anyone with information about suspected unlicensed guesthouses to report it to the OLA through the hotline (Tel: 2881 7498), by email (, by fax (2504 5805) using the report form downloaded from the OLA website (, or through the mobile application “Hong Kong Licensed Hotels and Guesthouses”. read more

S for IT visits Kwun Tong District (with photos)

     In his visit to Kwun Tong District today (June 14), the Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr Nicholas W Yang, toured the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) Headquarters and the financial technologies (Fintech) innovation lab eXellerator to get a better grasp of the public and private efforts in spurring innovation and technology (I&T).
     Accompanied by the Chairman of the Kwun Tong District Council, Dr Bunny Chan, and the District Officer (Kwun Tong), Mr Steve Tse, Mr Yang first visited the EMSD Headquarters. The Acting Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services, Mr Tai Tak-him, gave a brief account of I&T application in enhancing EMSD services, pushing forward smart city development and supporting commercialisation of research and development (R&D) results of local enterprises.
     The EMSD introduced a plan at the end of last year to turn its Headquarters Building and related facilities into a testing ground. Start-ups and universities can make use of this testing ground to field-test electrical and mechanical-related and energy efficiency-related I&T projects. Projects’ effectiveness and performance will be measured and verified with a view to promoting their development.
     In collaboration with the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation, the EMSD has organised the Innovative Technology Day since 2017. Representatives from start-ups of the Incu-Tech Programme, government departments and public organisations are invited to exchange views on driving realisation of R&D results. Early this year, the EMSD established the Innovation Office and launched the E&M InnoPortal. The platform facilitates matching amongst government departments, public organisations, universities and start-ups to enhance their services through I&T applications and accelerate commercialisation of research outcomes of local universities.
     A number of project demonstrations were shown to Mr Yang, including:
(1) The Remote Monitoring System developed in-house by the EMSD to monitor traffic lights, and pumping and lighting systems for underpasses and subways;
(2) A smart thermostat for central air-conditioning systems developed by a team from the City University of Hong Kong with funding support from the Technology Start-up Support Scheme for Universities;
(3) Passive light-emitting diode lighting technology developed by a team from the University of Hong Kong;
(4) Video analytics on passenger flow for lift operation optimisation developed by a start-up engaged via the E&M InnoPortal; and
(5) The Safematics Smart Safety System supported by the Public Sector Trial Scheme.

      This was followed by a visit to the Fintech innovation lab eXellerator in Standard Chartered Tower. Designed and run by co-working space operator WeWork, eXellerator brings together different departments of the bank, clients and start-ups to enhance user experience with Fintech. Mr Yang called for collaboration between eXellerator and the Cyberport Fintech community. Citing Cyberport as the largest Fintech cluster in Hong Kong with over 250 Fintech start-ups, Mr Yang said he believed that promising solutions could be found there.
     Before concluding the district visit, Mr Yang met with members of the Kwun Tong District Council to listen to their views on I&T development.

Photo  Photo  
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CHP investigates case of invasive meningococcal infection

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health is today (June 14) investigating a case of invasive meningococcal infection, a communicable disease transmitted by direct contact with droplets from carriers or infected persons.

     The case involves a 60-year-old woman, with underlying illnesses, who has presented with fever, vomiting and diarrhoea since June 11. She sought medical treatment from the Accident and Emergency Department (A&ED) of Queen Elizabeth Hospital on June 12 and passed away at the A&ED on the same day.

     Her blood sample tested positive for Neisseria meningitidis upon laboratory testing.

     Initial enquiries revealed that the patient lived alone and had no travel history during the incubation period. The CHP’s investigation is continuing. The case was also referred to the Coroner for investigation.

     “Meningococcal infection is caused by a bacterium known as meningococcus. It is mainly transmitted by direct contact through respiratory secretions, including droplets from the nose and throat, from infected persons. The incubation period varies from two to 10 days, and is commonly three or four days,” a spokesman for the CHP said.

     The clinical picture may vary. Severe illness may result when the bacteria invade the bloodstream (meningococcaemia) or the membranes that envelop the brain and spinal cord (meningococcal meningitis).

     Meningococcaemia is characterised by sudden onset of fever, intense headache, purpura, shock and even death in severe cases. Meningococcal meningitis is characterised by high fever, severe headache and stiff neck followed by drowsiness, vomiting, fear of bright light, or a rash. It can cause brain damage or even death. The brain damage may lead to intellectual impairment, mental retardation, hearing loss and electrolyte imbalance. Invasive meningococcal infections can be complicated by arthritis, inflammation of the heart muscle, inflammation of the posterior chamber of the eye or chest infection.

     Meningococcal infection is a serious illness. Patients should be treated promptly with antibiotics.

     To prevent meningococcal infection, members of the public are advised to take heed of the following measures:

  • Wash hands with liquid soap and water properly, especially when they are dirtied by respiratory secretions, e.g. after sneezing, and clean hands with alcohol-based handrub when they are not visibly soiled;
  • Cover the nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing, hold the spit with tissue, dispose of nasal and mouth discharge in a lidded rubbish bin, and wash hands immediately;
  • Avoid crowded places;
  • Avoid close contact with patients who have fever or severe headache;
  • Travellers to high-risk areas may consult doctors for meningococcal vaccination; and
  • Travellers returning from high-risk areas should seek medical advice if they become ill and should discuss their recent travel history with their doctor.
     The public may visit the CHP’s website for more information on meningococcal infection. read more