Speech by CS at prize presentation ceremony for EFG Hong Kong Ladies Open 2017 (English only)(with photos)

     Following is the speech by the Chief Secretary for Administration, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, at the prize presentation ceremony for the EFG Hong Kong Ladies Open 2017 today (June 11):
Mr Arnold Wong (Captain of Hong Kong Golf Club), Mrs Pei Pei Ball (Lady Captain of Hong Kong Golf Club), Mr Albert Chiu (Head of Asia Region, EFG International), Ms Cheng Mei-chi (Chairwoman of Taiwan Ladies Professional Golf Association), Mr Pen Tseng-kwan (Invited Vice Chairman of China Ladies Professional Golf Association), Mr Koichi Kato (President and Commissioner of Ladies Asian Golf Tour), Mr Harald Dudok Van Heel (President of Hong Kong Golf Association), Mr Daniel Liu (President of Hong Kong Professional Golfers), TK (Comissioner for Sports, Mr Yeung Tak-keung), ladies and gentlemen, players,
     Good afternoon. I am very honoured to join you all today at the prize presentation ceremony of the EFG Hong Kong Ladies Open 2017. This year has a special significance for Hong Kong as it marks the 20th anniversary of our return to the Motherland and the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
     On behalf of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) Government, I would like to extend my appreciation to all participating players for demonstrating their outstanding skills and sportsmanship in the tournament and warmly congratulate all winners of the Hong Kong Ladies Open.
     Being the first ladies golf championship in Hong Kong to earn the Rolex World Ranking points, the event offers a golden opportunity for an international cast of lady golfers to showcase their talents on the oldest golf course in this vibrant international city. The Hong Kong SAR Government has all along been encouraging the hosting of major events to add lustre to and enhance the vibrancy of the city. I am sure that the tournament, running the third edition this year, will definitely enrich the travel experience of our players and visitors and further raise Hong Kong's profile as a sports events capital in Asia.
     For years, the Hong Kong Government has spared no effort in promoting a sustainable sporting culture and implementing its three broad policy objectives, namely promoting sports for all, supporting elite athletes and attracting more international sports events to Hong Kong. To this end, we have injected HK$1 billion this year into the Elite Athletes Development Fund to support elite sports training. To promote sports in the community, a total of HK$20 billion will be spent on 26 projects to develop new sports and recreational facilities or improve some of the existing ones across the territory in the coming five years. We are also pressing ahead at full speed the pre-construction works for the 28-hectare Kai Tak Sports Park, located in the former Kai Tak Airport. It will certainly attract more major international sporting events to Hong Kong after its completion in 2022.
     We are proud to have our locally born brilliant golfer Ms Tiffany Chan joining us here today. Tiffany took the championship of the Hong Kong Ladies Open last year. She also claimed the glory to represent Hong Kong at the Rio Olympic Games. This was definitely an important milestone in the history of Hong Kong golf. With the concerted efforts of the Government, the sports association and the private sector, we look forward to the appearance of a large pool of potential elite athletes and successful hosting of more major international sports events ahead in Hong Kong.
     Today is the last day of the tournament. I would like to take this opportunity to extend my heartfelt thanks to the EFG, the title sponsor, for its generous support to the event. My sincere gratitude also goes to the Hong Kong Golf Association, Hong Kong Professional Golfers' Association as well as the Hong Kong Golf Club for staging the tournament once again on this historic and beautiful Old Course.
     On this note, I would like to wish all participating golfers and spectators a memorable experience and a pleasant journey in Hong Kong.
     Thank you.

Ends/Sunday, June 11, 2017
Issued at HKT 20:39