Following is the translation of the speech by the Postmaster General, Mr Allan Chiang, at the "Sports" Special Stamps Issuing Ceremony today(July 20):
Mr Siu, distinguished guests, friends from the sports scene and the media,
Welcome to the issuing ceremony of "Sports" Special Stamps. Recently, the air is redolent with such a passion for sports that I am sure you can all feel and absorb. On the soccer front, hot on the heels of the exciting Euro 2004 come the equally majestic Copa America and Asian Cup. Meanwhile, 2004 FIVB World Grand Prix Volleyball Hong Kong wrapped up just two days ago, with China emerged as the winner after heated battles against Italy, the United States and Thailand. The zeal and zest for sport is expected to reach a climax when the Olympic Games opens in Athens next month.
Sport is about strength, willpower, competitiveness, fairness, teamwork and self-transcendence. No matter how gifted and hardworking the athletes are, they need coaches and team leaders to maximise their talents and lay out the game plan. Mutual encouragement and tacit understanding between team members are just as crucial in determining whether or not the team comes out on the right side of victory. Still, the success formula cannot do without the support, be it materialistic or spiritual, of sport organizations, the government and the public. Success on the field is never the making of a single individual.
In fact, our staff share similar traits with the athletes, notably goal-oriented and performance-driven. Athletes take pride in their impressive medals and records, and we prizes in successful business and quality customer service. Last month, Hongkong Post was awarded with the Certificate of Excellence in the 2004 Hong Kong Management Association Quality Award, which is a strong testament of our remarkable corporate management and the wide recognition we have received.
Hongkong Post also displays other admirable qualities. For example, we keep rolling out innovative products and services, and are never shy of courting novel ideas. Take the "Sports" special stamps issued today. We have come up with an intriguing way of communicating through tiny pieces of stamps the thrill and excitement of five sporting events, which include relay race, highboard diving, volleyball, cycling and badminton. The 20-piece set is made up of five strips, each with four stamps depicting an Olympic sport in electrifying, freeze-frame motions that will hold you mesmerized.
This set of stamps represents our heartfelt blessing to the Hong Kong Olympic Team. We wish them godspeed and hope that they can score another triumphant breakthrough after they brought home Hong Kong's very first Gold Medal eight years ago.
Ends/Tuesday, July 20, 2004