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RealTime IT News

Hong Kong Pushes Chinese Character Set for the Web

The Hong Kong Government is aggressively pushing the usage of Chinese language character sets over the Internet and on locally generated Web sites.

Kwong Ki-chi, Secretary for Information Technology and Broadcasting, said while Internet content is largely in the English language there is a growing demand for Chinese content by Asian net users.

Kwong said that the government would aggressively promote increased Chinese content online. He added the government had adopted a common Chinese character set to facilitate data exchange between government departments and the public. "Almost all government Web sites are now bilingual," he said.

According to Kwong, Hong Kong is working with other Asian governments and institutions to develop an international coding standard to encompass character-based Asian languages into one single common character set.

Other issues outlined by Kwong included the need for more "sophisticated and user-friendly conversion tools capable of supporting the use of traditional and simplified Chinese characters," as well the mechanisms that can search and retrieve information in both traditional and simplified Chinese characters over the Internet.