Speech by CE at opening ceremony of 2016 FIA Formula E Hong Kong ePrix (with photos/video)

     Following is the speech by the Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung, at the opening ceremony of 2016 FIA Formula E Hong Kong ePrix today (October 9):
Mr Todt (President of the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), Mr Jean Todt), Mr Agag (Chief Executive Officer of FIA Formula E Championship, Mr Alejandro Agag), Mr Yu (President of the Hong Kong Automobile Association, Mr Lawrence Yu), Mr Fang (Chief Executive Officer of Formula Electric Racing (Hong Kong), Mr Alan Fang), Mr Lam (Chairman of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, Dr Peter Lam), government colleagues, ladies and gentlemen,
     Good afternoon. It gives me great pleasure to join you today to kick-off the FIA Formula E Championship - Hong Kong ePrix, a sporting first for our city. A very warm welcome, probably a very hot welcome, to all the racers, officials and fans from all over the world.
     This world-class motorsports event is sure to give spectators a thrilling experience, as they cheer drivers racing around the Central Harbourfront circuit, in full view of Hong Kong's spectacular harbour and the skyline of spectacular architecture and mountains.
     I have been looking forward to this - if I may - electrifying event. Announcing the Championship exactly a year ago to the day, I said it was a dream that the Hong Kong Government co-owns - to see Formula E cars racing through the streets of our city. So when Mr Yu, Mr Yu Kam-kee, approached me three years ago - about the possibility of organising an ePrix in Hong Kong - we welcomed this suggestion with open arms.
     Over the past two years, the Tourism Commission of Hong Kong Government, together with more than a dozen government bureaux and departments, had worked closely with the organiser towards realising this common dream. And here we are now - thanks to the good of work of all - to see the action, to see the dream come true.
     The Championship - a perfect blend of motorsports and entertainment - will no doubt become another signature event in our sport calendar. I was pleased to learn that the organiser and the tourism sector developed packages for visitors to enjoy the race. I encourage our overseas friends and visitors to also make time to experience everything that Hong Kong, Asia's world city, has to offer. 
     The Formula E Championship is one among other celebrated events in the "Hong Kong Sports Month" line-up, which includes the Hong Kong Tennis Open, Hong Kong Triathlon and Harbour Race, all enhancing Hong Kong's status as a sporting hub in the region, and a premier tourist destination worldwide.
     Before I close, let me again thank the FIA, Formula E Holdings, Formula Electric Racing (Hong Kong) and the Hong Kong Automobile Association for staging the Championship. My thanks, as well, to all government colleagues for overcoming challenges big and small, and all those who made this event a success.
     I wish the race a roaring success, and our spectators a delightful afternoon. Thank you.

(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the speech.)

Ends/Sunday, October 9, 2016
Issued at HKT 16:01