Following is the speech by the Secretary for Commerce, Industry and Technology, Mr Henry Tang, at the Opening Ceremony of Cyberport Phases I & II and Visitor Center today (June 27): (English only)
John (Strickland), Jack (So), Cyberport Tenants, Ladies and Gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to be here today officiating the opening of Cyberport Phases I and II and its Visitor Centre.
Today's ceremony marks an important milestone in Hong Kong's IT history. Not only are we celebrating the opening of the first and ever IT flagship project in Hong Kong, the ceremony also offers us a good opportunity to reflect on the significant impact IT has brought to bear on our daily life and business.
Building the Cyberport is no simple task. Technologically, the Cyberport has to provide state-of-the-art, seamless and reliable IT and telecommunications services to its tenants. In design and development terms, it has to provide a unique environment capable of attracting quality IT companies and stimulating creativity. Adding to these is a very tight timeframe set for the project - to complete Phase I within two years which is demanding even with private sector participation.
Notwithstanding the above, I am glad to see that the Cyberport is on track in attaining these targets. I am even more delighted to see many IT companies, ranging from SMEs to multinational corporations, have chosen Cyberport as the place to launch their businesses. Indeed, 97 per cent of the space in Cyberport 2 and over 55% of that in Cyberport 1 has been taken up.
In addition, Cyberport is also a place to nurture professional IT talent - the Cyberport Institute set up by the University of Hong Kong will provide market-driven IT programmes in Cyberport starting from September this year. The Institute and its students will no doubt add to the campus atmosphere of Cyberport.
We will press ahead with the completion of Phases III and IV of Cyberport as well as the shared facilities in the "IT Street". By early 2004, a whole range of shared facilities including training, exhibition and business support facilities will be available to Cyberport tenants and the community. A Wireless Solutions Development Centre and a Digital Media Centre will also be completed. These value-added facilities will provide Cyberport with the necessary platforms for developing clusters of the respective industries.
The Cyberport is a showcase of our efforts in developing Hong Kong into a leading digital city in the region. I am confident that the project will spur IT development in Hong Kong after the facilities have been completed and the relevant clusters formed. What is more, I am most encouraged to hear that a Cyberport Tenants' Club has recently been established with the missions of fostering a community spirit in Cyberport and promoting it as the IT hub of Asia. I wish the Club every success.
Last but not least, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to all those who have rendered their unfailing support for the Cyberport. I look forward to your continuing support for the project in the years to come. Thank you.
End/Friday, June 27, 2003