The Role of Cable TV in Hong Kong’s NII




The concept of a national information infrastructure (NII) has caught on globally, although in each society its specifications vary, and in each economy its model for development differs. Hong Kong’s model of development is a regulated private enterprise market economy. However the specific development of an NII in Hong Kong will rely entirely upon the narrowband and broadband networks of the dominant telecommunications provider, Hong Kong Telecom, unless a fledging cable TV network can succeed in building out a territory wide fibre-coaxial hybrid network. But cable TV competes in a shirking television market. This paper argues that retailing television services alone will not justify the building of a large-scale broadband network, and that cable TV will be driven to open alternative sources of revenue from wholesaling its network capacity to carry other services.