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SMS sender scheme expanded

The Office of the Communications Authority (OFCA) announced today that the SMS Sender Registration Scheme is now open for application by all sectors to further help the public verify the identities of SMS senders, with a view to combatting SMS fraud.   Apart from further opening up the scheme, the OFCA said it welcomes public and private organisations from various industries with a practical need to communicate with customers or clients via SMS to join the scheme.   Under the scheme, only registered senders are able to send SMS messages using their registered SMS sender IDs with the prefix “#”. All other SMS messages with sender IDs containing “#” but not sent by registered senders will be blocked by the telecommunications networks.   As such, the public can easily identify whether an SMS message is received from a registered sender by the prefix “#” in the SMS sender ID.   The OFCA reminds citizens to stay highly vigilant when receiving SMS messages from unknown sender

Industrial building waiver extended

The Development Bureau today announced that it will extend the effective period of the relaxation of waiver application requirement for existing industrial buildings (IBs) to January 31, 2025.


The bureau explained that with a view to revitalising and optimising the use of existing IBs, it relaxed the waiver application requirement for an initial period of five years on February 1, 2019.


The move was made to permit five specific non-industrial uses to operate in individual units of existing IBs without the need for the owner apply for a temporary waiver and pay a fee.


This is on the condition that such uses are permitted under the land use zoning of the sites concerned on the relevant Outline Zoning Plans as “Column 1”.


The five specific non-industrial uses cover art studio; audio-visual recording studio; design and media production; creative industries including design and media production firms, printing and publishing industries, film companies, and film-related trade organisations; and research, design and development centre.


With public safety as a prime concern, the permitted uses must not involve uses or activities that attract visiting members of the public by providing direct services or goods, such as hobby classes, exhibitions and sales activities, or rehearsal facilities for any party other than the operator, owner and tenant of the premises.


Apart from pointing out that the waiver relaxation arrangement facilitates the provision of needed floor space within existing industrial buildings in a pragmatic manner to meet persistent demand from various industries without compromising public safety, the bureau emphasised that the market feedback has been generally positive.


The Government will review the need for a further extension in due course, it added.


For details about the arrangement, visit the websites of the Development Bureau or the Lands Department.


For application enquiries on individual industrial buildings, please contact the District Lands Offices.

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