Transcript of remarks by FS, DFS, SCST, SDEV and S for Housing at media session after "Night Vibes Hong Kong" Campaign Launch Ceremony (with photo/video)

     The Financial Secretary, Mr Paul Chan, officiated at the "Night Vibes Hong Kong" Campaign Launch Ceremony today (September 14), and met the media together with the Deputy Financial Secretary, Mr Michael Wong; the Secretary for Culture, Sports and Tourism, Mr Kevin Yeung; the Secretary for Development, Ms Bernadette Linn; and the Secretary for Housing, Ms Winnie Ho, after the ceremony. Following is the transcript of remarks:
Reporter: So for the Wan Chai, Kwun Tong and Belcher Bay bazaars, some industry insiders have reported to book a slot to perform, it can cost up to $20,000 an hour. Is that too expensive? Would you provide some subsidies to them? And my second question is, if you look at the list for tonight, a lot of the events such as Wine and Dine Festival and the fireworks, they have been going on for many years, and they don't seem to be exclusively for this event. Even the theme park events were announced a few months ago. Is there a lack of events exclusively for Night Vibes?
Financial Secretary: On the rental costs, actually, what you have quoted may not be correct. So if I may, I would defer the question later to the Secretary for Development to give you a more detailed explanation. As to the events that you quote, say for example, the Wine and Dine Festival, our thinking is that if the events are welcomed by the people with good impact, and become popular, there is no point to avoid them; but rather, we should inject new energy and vibrancy into them, making them more interesting, attractive, and available to more members of the public, thus creating new experiences.
     Perhaps what we need to do is to continue to innovate and reinvent ourselves, no matter it is new events or old events.  At the same time, when you look at the list of activities, there are indeed new events to be staged.
Secretary for Development: For the three events to be run in our harbourfront sites, namely in Wan Chai, the Belcher Bay Promenade and also in Kwun Tong, actually they will be co-orgainsed by the Development Bureau and non-government organisations. And we will not be charging the non-government organisations any rent for the use of the space. So accordingly, if these organisations want to bring in store operators for selling, for example, some food or small souvenirs, they do not have to and they cannot charge any rental for those store operators. And as regards those performers, for example, those doing the busking or some dance performances, they will be sponsored because the co-orgainsers will be trying to seek sponsorship from commercial organisations. So basically, those store operators will not be charged any rent for the use of the space.

Reporter: For the Financial Secretary, there are reports that Brent Neiman, an Assistant US Treasury Secretary, travelled to Hong Kong yesterday. Have you met with him? And for your upcoming trip to France and the UK, are you planning to meet with any UK officials?
Financial Secretary: I haven't met with him. I understand that some of my colleagues in the Government will meet with him. As to my coming trip to Europe, I'm going to Paris, London and then Berlin and Frankfurt. The main purpose of the visit is to showcase Hong Kong's new competitive advantages and opportunities, and to meet with the business communities there, and to answer any questions that they may have. That is the plan for the moment. Thank you.
(Please also refer to the Chinese portion of the transcript.)

Ends/Thursday, September 14, 2023
Issued at HKT 21:56