CEDB responds to recommendation by US Department of Justice's committee to deny PLCN connecting to HK

     In response to media enquiries about the recommendation made by a committee under the Department of Justice of the United States (the Committee) in denying the submarine cable connection by the Pacific Light Cable Network (PLCN) to Hong Kong, a spokesman for the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau (CEDB) said the following today (June 18):

     "A submarine optical fibre cable system directly connecting Hong Kong and the US would help further enhance telecommunications capacity of the two places and facilitate trade and business activities. It is of mutual benefit to both places. We disagreed with and are disappointed about the Committee's recommendation in denying the PLCN connecting to Hong Kong. The recommendation not only hinders the telecommunications development between Hong Kong and the US, it also harms the interests of US investors and entities, and disregards the win-win situation between Hong Kong and the US as brought by investments in communications infrastructure. The concerns raised by the Committee are also ungrounded.
     "As a telecommunications hub in the region, Hong Kong has a world-class telecommunications infrastructure. We attach great importance to the security and integrity of our telecommunications networks, which is widely acclaimed internationally. Our robust legal system also offers strong protection to privacy rights. These unique advantages are fully protected under the 'one country, two systems' principle.
     "Countries around the world have their legislations to protect their countries' national security. The proposed national security law in Hong Kong will not affect the legitimate rights and freedoms under the Basic Law. As a matter of fact, international investors attach great importance to social stability and security, and we believe the national security law can bring confidence and a stable business environment to them.
     "Hong Kong has a vibrant external telecommunications market, with a total of 11 external submarine optical fibre cable systems, 20 overland optical fibre cables and 11 communications satellites connecting Hong Kong with places around the world. The existing and planned capacity of the external telecommunications facilities are expected to meet the medium to long-term external telecommunications demand in Hong Kong. The total equipped capacity has reached 89.6 terabits per second (Tbps), which accounts for only a small fraction (about 11 per cent) of the overall designed capacity."

Ends/Thursday, June 18, 2020
Issued at HKT 19:14