The local government has signed a framework agreement with Alibaba Group to develop Macau into a smart city, by using Alibaba’s big data processing capabilities to enhance the quality of the city’s public services.
Witnessed by Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On and Alibaba Group Executive Chairman Jack Ma Yun, the “Framework Agreement of Strategic Cooperation on Smart City Development” was signed on Friday at Government Headquarters by Chui’s Chief-of-Cabinet O Lam and Alibaba Cloud President Hu Xiaoming according to The Macau Post Daily.
Addressing a press conference after the signing ceremony, O said the cooperation project consists of two phases.
According to O, the first phase, which will run until June 2019, will comprise the construction of a cloud computing data centre in Macau, as well as the data mapping stage of information managed by various government entities.
During the first phase, the relevant parties will gradually launch projects using a range of big data services in order to accelerate Macau’s development in a number of areas, including tourism, training of information technology professionals, transportation management, medical services, and urban management, according to O.
O said the government expected the first batch of projects to produce preliminary results by the end of 2018.
According to O, the second phase of the framework agreement covers the period from July 2019 to June 2021. The relevant parties will start projects related to environmental protection, customs clearance procedures, and forecasting models for Macau’s economy.
O said the government decided to cooperate with Alibaba Cloud after carrying out a study and assessing the experience of other developed cities in this field. O noted that Alibaba Cloud – a unit of Alibaba Group – is the largest provider of cloud computing services in the mainland and also a leading company in this field internationally.
In addition, Alibaba Cloud is widely recognised in the Asia Pacific region in terms of information security, O pointed out. The company’s cloud platform is highly compatible with different systems, which means that the local government will not need to change its existing systems, O said.
The co-operation with Alibaba would help the city achieve its long-term development goals, O said.
O did not give a price tag, pointing out that the deal signed with Alibaba is a framework agreement. She added that each project would have its own budget.