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Speech by CS at opening ceremony of 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship Div II Group B Qualification (English only) (with photos/video)

     Following is the speech by the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, at the opening ceremony for the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Ice Hockey Women's World Championship Division II Group B Qualification at Mega Ice in Kowloon Bay today (February 18):

Dear Mr (Frank) Gonzalez, Mr (Thomas) Wu, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

     Good afternoon. It gives me great pleasure to officiate at this opening ceremony of the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey Women's World Championship event today. I would like to take this opportunity to extend a warm welcome to the participating teams from Bulgaria, South Africa, Turkey and of course Hong Kong as well as our guests from around the world.

     Thanks to the endeavours and dedication of the Hong Kong Ice Hockey Association (HKIHA), we are much honoured to host this world-class tournament of women's ice hockey in Hong Kong for the first time. This high-level event attracts some 100 world-class ice hockey athletes and provides an excellent platform for the teams to match their skills against other elite players. I am sure that all athletes will do their utmost to fight for the championship, and the series of matches will certainly bring tremendous excitement and fun to all ice hockey lovers.

     The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government fully appreciates the importance of sports in promoting healthy lifestyles, encouraging social interaction and fostering a strong sense of community identity. We will continue to accord high priority to the development of sports at all levels and for people from all walks of life.

     Hong Kong is a dynamic and vibrant city with many mega events held each year. These events not only add colour and energy to our city, but also enrich the travel experience of visitors and reinforce Hong Kong's position as an events capital of Asia. We are keen to see more organisations hosting international sports events in Hong Kong.

     Last but not least, I wish the tournament every success and all visitors a rewarding and enjoyable stay in Hong Kong.

     Thank you.

Ends/Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Issued at HKT 15:32


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