Speech by SCED at HKDA Global Design Awards 2016 Presentation Ceremony (English only)

     Following is the speech by the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, at the Hong Kong Designers Association Global Design Awards 2016 Presentation Ceremony today (July 15):

Mr Lo (Chairman of Hong Kong Designers Association, Mr David Lo), distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

     It is my pleasure to join you all at the Hong Kong Designers Association (HKDA) Global Design Awards 2016 Presentation Ceremony today. It is indeed exciting to be among such a distinguished gathering of designers, business leaders, and academics.

     Design is an integral part of Hong Kong. In Hong Kong you can find towering skyscrapers of breathtaking architectural excellence, revitalised historical buildings tastefully preserved, and the latest fashion from designers all over the world, just to name a few. Recognising good design is not the same as knowing how this can be delivered. How that can be done, of course, is something for outstanding design masters like all of you.

     Hong Kong brings people, culture and ideas together. We have lots of design masterminds who know what business of design means, and Dr Kan Tai-keung is no doubt the leading one. It is my honour indeed to have the opportunity to present the HKDA Lifetime Honorary Award to Dr Kan today.

     To maintain Hong Kong's competitiveness, we need to stay ahead of the game. We have long invested in our design sector and our efforts are beginning to bear fruit. Hong Kong design is starting to glean substantial recognition across the globe. The design sector outpaces all other creative sectors in terms of GDP growth and employment. To keep up the momentum, the Government has recently injected $400 million into the CreateSmart Initiative to continue to promote design and creativity. I am confident that our design industry will scale new heights, opening up new markets while refreshing old ones.

     This evening, we are celebrating the 40th anniversary of the HKDA Global Design Awards. The award programme is not simply a design competition, but is also a driver of a year-long campaign to promote the excellence of Hong Kong design. I would like to applaud the HKDA for making the Awards a success. My heartfelt thanks to the judges, who have a challenging task of choosing among many high-quality submissions. Congratulations also go to the award winners.

     The joyful occasion today reminds us of the importance of passing on the baton from generation to generation. I am sure you will be ready and willing to impart your knowledge and experience to the other up and coming members of the design fraternity. I look forward to seeing the continued success of Hong Kong's design sector in the years to come.

     Thank you.

Ends/Friday, July 15, 2016
Issued at HKT 18:55