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Hong Kong promotes its position as Asia's wine hub at Bordeaux Wine Festival (English only) (with photos)

     Hong Kong is promoting its position as Asia's wine trading hub at the leading wine tourism event in France, the 10th Bordeaux Wine Festival (Bordeaux Fête le Vin), which is being held in the French city from June 23 to 26.

     Hong Kong was represented at the opening ceremony on Thursday, June 23 (Bordeaux time) by the Permanent Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development (Commerce, Industry and Tourism), Mr Philip Yung; Special Representative for Hong Kong Economic and Trade Affairs to the European Union, Ms Shirley Lam; Deputy Commissioner for Tourism, Miss Rosanna Law; and the Chairman of the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB), Dr Peter Lam.

     The biennial festival, which is held on the quays of the Garonne River, is expected to attract 700 000 visitors this year after receiving 500 000 visitors during the previous edition in 2014. In 2012, Hong Kong was the guest city of honour at the Bordeaux Wine Festival at the invitation of the city's Mayor, Mr Alain Juppé.

     This year, the focus will be on 10 cities that have been invited to present their tourism, cultural, gastronomic and wine assets. They comprise seven cities under the Great Wine Capitals Global Network and three cities with which Bordeaux has a special relationship, namely Hong Kong, Quebec (Canada) and Brussels (Belgium).

     During their visit to Bordeaux and the Aquitaine region, Mr Yung and the delegation will promote Hong Kong as the super-connector between Mainland China and the rest of the world, bringing wine from more than 40 countries into the growing market on its doorstep. Hong Kong's wine re-exports to the Mainland soared last year - up 87 per cent, year-on-year. More and more of these re-exports are granted instant clearance at Mainland customs, stored in Hong Kong cellars accredited by the Hong Kong Quality Assurance Agency, and marketed on the Mainland with Hong Kong's branding expertise and enterprise. France was the top origin of wines imported into Hong Kong in terms of value in 2015, with imports worth HK$ 6.7 billion, a 62 per cent market share.

     On the Festival's opening day of June 23, the Hong Kong delegation attended an inaugural luncheon hosted by Mr Juppé at Bordeaux City Hall. In the late afternoon, Mr Yung and Mr Lam officiated at the official opening ceremony, after which they visited the Festival's booths with Mr Juppé, including a Hong Kong Pavilion set up by the HKTB. Mr Juppé will host a breakfast meeting for the Hong Kong delegation at the Bordeaux City Hall on June 25.

     The delegation is making use of the opportunities provided by this visit to further consolidate Hong Kong's strong economic relationship with Bordeaux, such as renewing ties with regional government officials and the representatives of local economic and trade organisations like the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce and the Bordeaux Wine Council, meeting local vintners and taking part in wine tourism-related visits organised by the HKTB.

     In addition to wine and tourism business, Bordeaux is also interested in forging links with Hong Kong in other areas such as start-ups, innovation and technology. A delegation from Bordeaux and Aquitaine start-ups visited Hong Kong during Vinexpo from May 24 to 26 in search of local partners.

Ends/Friday, June 24, 2016
Issued at HKT 17:51


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