CS outlines three focus areas under the theme of "Together · Progress · Opportunity" for HKSAR 20th anniversary celebrations (with photos/video)

     The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, has today (April 6) outlined three focus areas under the theme "Together . Progress. Opportunity" for the 20th Anniversary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region celebrations in 2017.

     Mr Cheung said the 20th Anniversary was a major milestone in Hong Kong's development that provided an opportunity to showcase the successful implementation of "one country, two systems".

     It was also a good opportunity to foster social cohesion and unity, promote and leverage Hong Kong’s unique advantages to spur economic development and to continue serving the development of our Motherland.

     Mr Cheung said that 20th Anniversary activities and events were developed with three focus areas in mind.

     "The first focus is that we very much want the 20th Anniversary to be a celebration for all," said Mr Cheung.

     "The HKSAR's achievements over the past 20 years are the result of the concerted efforts and hard work of the whole community. We have overcome many challenges as a society. So, it is important to ensure that this message of unity, inclusiveness and care is embedded in the 20th Anniversary celebrations.

     "We attach great importance to community participation, and have devoted much effort to organise activities especially for the elderly, grass-roots families, the underprivileged and ethnic minorities."

     Mr Cheung said the Home Affairs Department would co-ordinate a "Celebrations for All" project to be implemented by non-governmental organisations in the 18 districts.

     Volunteers will visit the households of a total of around 300,000 elderly people and families in need (150,000 each) and give them gift packs. Senior Government officials will be involved in the visits. Transportation and meals will be provided to more than 100,000 seniors and grass-roots families to facilitate their participation in 20th Anniversary activities, while assistance will also be provided to 120,000 underprivileged to take part in district events.

     In all, over 300 activities will be arranged by Bureaux and Departments, along with over 300 community-organised events in Hong Kong. There will be something for everyone.

     Mr Cheung said the second focus area is building on past success, scaling new heights, seizing opportunities and passing the torch. A number of large-scale activities and forums will be held to bring together global and local experts to explore the opportunities for the economic, cultural and social development of Hong Kong in the years ahead.

     Mr Cheung said a number of celebration events had been specially designed for youth, who were the future pillars of society.

     The Youth Ambassadors in Celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the Establishment of the HKSAR Programme, organised by the Home Affairs Bureau and the Commission on Youth, has recruited some 100 Youth Ambassadors.

     These Ambassadors will help receive guests at large-scale international conferences, take part in event planning, and participate in exchanges with visiting overseas youths.

     "Two special youth internship programmes will be held this summer. Youth from Hong Kong and Guangdong Province will take part in internship programmes at the Wolong National Nature Reserve in Sichuan and the Palace Museum in Beijing.

     "This will help broaden their horizons and enhance their understanding of nature and heritage conservation. Another exchange programme to Dunhuang will enable Hong Kong youth to appreciate the historic and cultural significance of the ancient Silk Road," said Mr Cheung.

     The third focus would be to showcase Hong Kong's strengths through celebrations in the Mainland and overseas.

     Mr Cheung said Hong Kong's strengths and advantages will also be showcased globally through a wide range of events and activities arranged by overseas Economic and Trade Offices (ETOs) and Mainland Offices.

     More than 120 performances by Hong Kong performing arts groups, ranging from major performing arts groups to small and medium-sized groups, will be arranged to showcase Hong Kong's cultural diversity and talent, as well as provide international performance opportunities for local talent.

     The ETOs and Mainland Offices will hold more than 200 promotional activities to celebrate the 20th anniversary in over 80 cities. Events include exhibitions on design, cultural and arts showcases, film festivals, Hong Kong Week, wine and dine festivals, sports activities and gala dinners.

     The Permanent Secretary for Home Affairs, Mrs Betty Fung, elaborated on the major events and activities as well as a number of territory-wide city dress-up programmes that would be rolled out in the coming months.

     She said four large-scale exhibitions would be staged by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD): "Inventing le Louvre: From Palace to Museum over 800 Years" jointly organised with Musée du Louvre, to be launched on April 26; "Eternal Life - Exploring Ancient Egypt" co-organised by Hong Kong Science Museum and the British Museum, to be launched on June 2; and "Celebrating Imperial Birthdays in the Qing Dynasty" and the "Yangxindian Exhibition from Palace Museum" to be presented in collaboration with the Palace Museum commencing from the end of June or early July.

      Another highlight will be the "Silk Road Exhibition" featuring the route network of the Chang'an - Tianshan Corridor of the Silk Road, which will be jointly presented with the State Administration of Cultural Heritage in November.

     An exciting series of performing arts events will be presented by LCSD throughout the year, including those by internationally renowned groups such as the Berliner Philharmoniker, the National Ballet of China, the No. 1 Troupe of the China National Peking Opera Company and the Peking Opera Theatre of Beijing, as well as our local major performing arts groups.

     Military bands from Europe, America and Asia will join the military bands from the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, including those of the Navy, the Guard of Honour and the Guard of Honour of the Hong Kong Garrison, together with the Hong Kong Police Band, for an International Military Tattoo in July.

     A wide range of major sporting events will be presented, including the first ever UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Hong Kong from April 12 to 16; the World Snooker Master Challenge 2017 and the English Premier League Asia Trophy 2017 to be held in July; as well as the Volvo Ocean Race with Hong Kong as the only stop in Asia.

     Mrs Fung said a Yao Foundation Charity Game at the end of July will be a first for Hong Kong when players from the US National Basketball Association (NBA) take on those from the Chinese Basketball Association. In addition to the exhibition match, NBA players will also visit schools and take part in other charity events. The National Gymnastics Team will also visit Hong Kong in October and stage sports demonstrations in Queen Elizabeth Stadium.

     She also said that the LCSD sports facilities would be open for public uses free of charge on July 1 to promote sport for all in celebration of the anniversary.

     On city dress-up, the Government had been working closely with local artists, designers and professionals to inject artistic elements into the Hong Kong cityscape and our public open space.

     Celebration projects include the "City Dress Up: Blossoming Stairs" which sees 20 large flights of stairs decorated with flower motifs from the Hong Kong Museum of Art collection. The decorations were launched on April 5 and will be changed to feature the four seasons with a total of 80 patterns.

     The LCSD will roll out the "Seats‧Together" public art project in July. The programme will feature a range of aesthetically and functionally appealing seats created by local young designers, artists and architects for public enjoyment in 20 selected venues of the department.

     To boost the festive atmosphere, buntings, banners and other decorations with a 20th Anniversary theme are being mounted around town and will be put up at the airport and boundary checkpoints from this month. Colourful creative visuals created for the 20th anniversary can also be seen at the Star Ferry and Central Harbourfont areas, and on a wide range of public transport.

     The Director of the Celebrations Coordination Office, Mr Gordon Leung, added that several major conferences would underpin the focus area of "Seizing opportunities, passing on torch".

     These would include the Belt and Road Summit, Museum Summit, and the Internet Economy Summit 2017.

     "These events will provide platforms for local and overseas professionals and stakeholders to exchange ideas and explore new possibilities, while showcasing Hong Kong's status as a major international convention and exhibition capital," he said.

     To promote efforts to improve the living standards of the elderly through innovation and technology, the Government will hold the Gerontech and Innovation Expo and Summit in June jointly with the Hong Kong Council of Social Service and the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation.

     Mr Leung said Hong Kong's creativity would also be on show in the design, animation and film sectors through exhibitions to be staged in Hong Kong, in the Mainland and overseas.

     From late June to mid-July, the Government of the HKSAR will stage a large-scale exhibition on the 20th Anniversary at the National Museum of China to showcase the major progress of Hong Kong, the close cooperation with the Mainland in different aspects and our aspirations for the future.

     The 20th Anniversary theme song "Hong Kong Our Home" also premiered at the press conference. The song was composed by T-Ma and Jay Fung, with lyrics by Jolland Chan. A range of well-known singers provided the vocal talent. They include Hacken Lee, Miriam Yeung, Pakho Chau, Jason Chan, Joyce Cheng, AGA, JW, Ken Hung, Alfred Hui and Mag Lam.

     Radio Television Hong Kong has also produced a special 20th Anniversary television series - "Transformers 2017" which features 20 successful people from different generations over the past two decades.

     The series, to be broadcast from May to July, will showcase their determination to pursue their dreams as well as their achievements.

     A "HKSAR 20" Facebook page has been launched today to share news about celebration activities as well as provide photo and video content for sharing.

     A series of roving exhibitions will be staged from mid-April to September at major shopping centres to provide residents with another opportunity to learn about the 20th Anniversary events as well as Hong Kong’s achievements over the past 20 years.

     More details of 20A celebrations can be found at the 20A website www.hksar20.gov.hk. Regular updates and posts can also be found on the 20A facebook page www.facebook.com/HKSAR20/ and 20A Youtube.

     More details about "Blossoming Stairs" can be found at blossomingstairs.hk/.

Ends/Thursday, April 6, 2017
Issued at HKT 22:53