Following is the speech by the Financial Secretary, Mr Henry Tang, at the Award Presentation cum Gala Dinner of the Business of Design Week 2003 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel this evening (December 8):
Victor, Freeman, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am pleased to join you all this evening at the Award Presentation cum Gala Dinner of the Business of Design Week 2003. The awards tonight, including the 'Design for Asia Award', the 'Distinguished Design from China Award' and the 'World's Outstanding Chinese Designer Award', are pioneers of their kinds, and mark a special highlight of the event. I would like to pay a sincere tribute to the Hong Kong Design Centre and the Hong Kong Trade Development Council for putting all these together.
Very much akin to what Giorgio Armani champions that 'design is for living', the theme of the Business of Design Week this year is 'LifeStyleAsia'. This spectacular exhibition-cum-conference event aims to showcase achievements of great design and their effectiveness when applied to different aspects of Asian lifestyle. And as design is something that can be used and enjoyed by people, it translates into tremendous business opportunities, particularly vis-a-vis the ever-growing Asian market. I am very pleased to see here the congregation of so many design talents and business people from all over the world to celebrate together the power of design and the potential of business growth. I hope I have been successful this evening in persuading one American company to set up its operations in Hong Kong. I eagerly await your announcement.
To acknowledge good designs worldwide that have achieved commercial success and made a positive impact on Asian lifestyle, we will witness this evening the inaugural presentation of the 'Design for Asia Award' to nine winners. I understand our panel of judges, comprising reputable design professionals and business leaders from different parts of the world, had a hard time in the selection. There are over 100 entries. All involve innovative designs and products which have won the support and recognition of their nominators. Most of these designs and products have in fact already diffused into our everyday life. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all the winners for your innovation, creativity and hard work.
The 'Distinguished Design from China Award' will go to four winners this evening. Not only have these winners helped upgrade our quality of life, their brilliant innovation and fine applications have also stimulated and fostered the development and adoption of design in this part of the world. Again, I would like to offer my warmest congratulations to all the winners.
Last but not least, we will confer recognition to the 'World's Outstanding Chinese Designer' this evening. Your years of hard work and selfless devotion in design no doubt have earned you this prestigious award.
I am encouraged to see the support and enthusiasm rendered to the Business of Design Week 2003 and the event this evening. I trust that such support and enthusiasm will continue to sustain and grow, as the importance of design becomes more widely recognized not only by the business community, but as part of the essence of our lifestyle.
End/Monday, December 8, 2003