The China Meteorological Administration (CMA) today (February 23) launched an official Chinese-language global city weather forecast website.
The new website, www.worldweather.cn, offers access to the latest official forecasts for the world's cities issued by the National Meteorological Services (NMSs). It is operated by the CMA under the auspices of the World Meteorological Organization WMO. It is the Chinese version of the English-language World Weather Information Service (WWIS) website operated by the Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) for more than two years.
Mr Lam Chiu-ying, Director of the Hong Kong Observatory, said the technical personnel of both the HKO and CMA were in close contact during the development of the Chinese website. "The launch of this website reflects the close cooperation between us in working towards the goal of providing quality services to a wider audience. It is an excellent example of how exchange of technology can benefit the international community," Mr Lam said.
"We are excited to be associated with this project, which will enable more than one billion Chinese-speaking people both in China and overseas to obtain official and accurate weather information in a convenient manner," he said.
During the launch ceremony for the website in Beijing, Mr Qin Da-he, Administrator of the CMA, said: "For the public to obtain official weather information from the NMSs in a timely manner, the WMO has thus decided on a pilot project to establish a WWIS to provide official weather information. The HKO is the centre for collating the city forecasts of the WWIS. It is also the developer of the English version of the website. As Chinese is one of the official languages of the WMO, the CMA has participated actively in the pilot project. Through cooperation with various parties, the development and testing of the Chinese version of the WWIS were completed at the end of 2003 and the website is officially launched today."
At the ceremony, Mr Qin also expressed his thanks to the HKO and the meteorological organisations of other members which provided assistance and information during the development of this Chinese website.
The new website will provide the public, the international community and the media with concise, accurate and up-to-date weather information in Chinese. It offers authoritative and reliable weather information to all Internet users, who are often bewildered by the diversity of information presented by a wide array of service providers not related to the meteorological community.
All weather information is provided by the respective NMSs, which collectively operate the official worldwide weather observing network with proper forecasting procedures coordinated by the WMO. Forecasts for 858 cities of 90 members are regularly updated, while climatological data are given for 1002 cities of 153 members.
Users can also follow the links to visit the websites of the NMSs to search for further information.
The public can click the "Chinese version" icon on the HKO WWIS website (http://www.worldweather.org/) to view the contents.