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Asia Cultural Co-operation Forum 2015 promotes cultural co-operation in Asian economies (with photos)

     Cultural ministers and senior officials of eight Asian countries came together in Hong Kong for the Asian Cultural Ministers' Panel Discussion session this morning (December 7) to exchange ideas and share views on the furtherance of cultural co-operation to promote the development of culture and the arts.

     With the theme of "Community-wide Support: the Foundation for Vibrant and Sustainable Cultural Growth", the Asian Cultural Ministers' Panel Discussion session today was the highlight of the Asia Cultural Co-operation Forum (ACCF) 2015 hosted by the Home Affairs Bureau (HAB).

     Held in Hong Kong for the ninth year, the ACCF was launched in 2003 as one of the HAB's key initiatives to foster regional cultural co-operation, share good practices and promote culture and the arts.

     The Minister of Culture, Mr Luo Shugang, addressed today's panel discussion session. Other cultural ministers and senior officials from Cambodia, India, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, Singapore and Thailand also joined today's panel discussion session. They took turns to speak on the theme and together exchanged views with the audience in a question-and-answer session.

     The Secretary for Home Affairs, Mr Lau Kong-wah, in his opening speech at the panel discussion session, said that the theme of this year's Forum is relevant to the present era which attaches importance to public engagement. Arts and culture should be fostered, administered and appreciated under a "bottom-up" approach. Apart from the provision of the necessary infrastructure to cater for growing demand within the community, it is equally important to mobilise the collective efforts of different sectors in the community for the continuous development of the arts and culture.

     Mr Lau added that, the grand and visionary "Belt and Road" initiative taken forward by the Central Government will expand connectivity. With its unique advantages, Hong Kong has all it takes to expand friendship and enrich the development of Asian culture and arts among countries along the "Belt and Road".

     The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, hosted a luncheon for the guests joining the Forum. She said in her speech that the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government is committed to playing an active role in stimulating cultural growth and facilitating vibrant development of culture and arts across the region, and believes that co-operation and exchanges in arts and culture are the basic blocks for building friendship among countries and improving quality of life. In the light of the "Belt and Road" initiative, which advocates, among others, the strengthening of the people-to-people bonds across the "Belt and Road" economies and enhancing cultural exchanges, this year's ACCF has served as a timely platform for leaders in the region to share information, knowledge and experience. Mrs Lam, together with Mr Luo, witnessed the signing of the "Implementation Plan on Cultural Exchange and Co-operation between the Mainland and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in 2016-2018" between the Ministry of Culture and the HAB.

     In the afternoon, cultural programmes were held for participating delegations to visit the Asia Society Hong Kong Center as well as the Hong Kong Maritime Museum.

Ends/Monday, December 7, 2015
Issued at HKT 20:01


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