Following is the speech by the Postmaster General, Mr Allan Chiang, at the "Development of the Pearl River Delta Region" Special Stamps Issuing Ceremony this morning (October 19):
Ms Choi, Mr Alexander, distinguished guests and friends from the media,
Good morning, welcome to the issuing ceremony of the "Development of the Pearl River Delta Region" Special Stamps.
The economic integration with the Greater Pearl River Delta (GPRD) region can be traced back as far as the 1980s when local investment flowed into Guangdong, our naturally well-endowed neighbourhood where production costs were relatively lower. The cost of doing business in Hong Kong may be a little higher, but our strengths, in fact, lie in people, capital, technology and market knowledge. The combined strengths and synergy of Guangdong and Hong Kong together with Macao's thriving entertainment and tourism industry have played and will continue to play a pivotal role in sustaining the rapid growth of the GPRD region.
Communication and delivery is essential to the region's sustained growth, hence Hongkong Post, Macao Post and Guangdong Postal Bureau have together played a supporting role in the GPRD's development. Take the outbound letters and parcels for the Mainland. Over 50% of them are destined to Guangdong Province and Guangzhou becomes the processing hub of our Mainland-bound mail, air and surface alike. As for mail to and from Macao, the majority of it comes to Hong Kong for processing and distribution.
Off and on, new added-valued services have been jointly rolled out among the three postal administrations for the GPRD region and the rest of the Mainland to boost trading activities. Take the Gift Fulfilment Service that we launched with Guangdong Postal Bureau at the start of the year. Customers are invited to order any gift packages on the list for their Mainland friends, relatives and business partners for most occasions. As for important festivals like Chinese New Year or Mid-Autumn, festive presents will be specially arranged according to customers orders. During the process, we take charge of the orders while our counterparts do all the deliveries. Hand in hand, we provide our customers with an efficient fulfilment service.
As sustainability starts with solidarity, we attach importance to experience sharing for continual improvement. For example, in the course of the last Universal Postal Union meeting in Romania, heads of Guangdong Postal Bureau and Macao Post and I juggled the schedule a little so that we could have some discussions on further co-operation issues. Many visits to offices of the Guangdong Postal Bureau by our best staff have also been conducted. Apart from official meetings at conferences and workplaces, regular football matches are also held between us for closer ties. It is encouraging to see the solidarity and friendship after every match.
The issue of "Development of the Pearl River Delta Region" Special Stamps today focuses on the speedy development of the region, particularly in the aspects of infrastructure, logistics, tourism and business. PRD Region integration was good, but is no longer good enough now. A greater hinterland as big as the Pan-PRD region is what we strive for. "Backed by the Mainland and Engaged Globally" is not only the right way to go for Hong Kong but for Hongkong Post as well. Hence, we are committed to grasping every opportunity to step up co-operation with every single mainland postal administration for new businesses and new services and have our Corporate Statement "Linking People, Delivering Business" fully realised.
Ends/Tuesday, October 19, 2004