Written by Rob Picheta, CNN
Cheng, the heir to a property and jewelry empire, said he will make the first batch of 10 million masks available to vulnerable people and low-income families, who can use a pre-loaded smart card in the vending machines.
The machines will be placed in 18 districts around Hong Kong. Credit: New World Development
"It is heart-breaking to see so many people suffer because they simply cannot afford or get a hold of masks, which have become so costly and scarce," Cheng said in a statement.
"Some disadvantaged groups have had to use the same mask repeatedly. I hope this initiative will provide convenient and appropriate support to those in need so that they are not living in fear due to mask shortages."
Each "smart redemption card" used for the program will have a unique QR code for identification purposes, Cheng's company said, which the holder can tap at one the "Mask To Go" dispensers to collect a pack of masks.
The machines will be placed in 18 districts around the city from the end of April.
This article has been updated to better reflect Adrian Cheng's position at New World Development.