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Hong Kong ISP Body Seeks To Represent Entire Industry

The Hong Kong Internet Providers' Association (HKISPA) wants to extend its membership to other types of companies that are involved in the Hong Kong Internet industry.

"The association wants to expand its membership to include any company that is involved in the Internet business," said Charles Mok, chairman of the HKISPA and general manager of HKNet Co Ltd.

Such businesses would include Web designers, content providers, e-commerce companies, and telecommunications companies that offer Internet telephony.

According to Mok, the HKISPA intends to expand its membership so that it can better represent the industry when resolving various issues with the Hong Kong Government.

"We don't want to monopolize the whole Internet scene," commented Mok. "Even when we talk to the government, we are not the only ones affected."

Important issues that the HKISPA is discussing with the government include privacy concerns on the Internet, the upcoming liberalization of fixed networks, the establishment of a watchdog like Carnegie Mellon University's CERT Coordination Center for all IT security related issues, and Hong Kong's bid to become the location for the Internet Society's INET 2000.

With a wider representation, the association can gain more support for proposals it puts forth, particularly ones that require public funding like a Hong Kong CERT center and a the bid for INET.

Mok believes the greater representation is important because the Internet industry in Hong Kong is changing from its current focus on ISP's.

"I think that the market in 2 to 3 years will be very different not only because there will be more Internet users, they'll use it in more productive ways," Mok pointed out.

"As the market gets bigger, the number of kinds of Internet business will increase."