SCED's speech at opening ceremony of "Friday Dress Hong Kong" (English only)
Following is the speech by the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, at the opening ceremony of "Friday Dress Hong Kong" held by the Fashion Farm Foundation today (May 29):
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
I am thrilled to be here. What an amazing evening. The catwalk tonight gives us a glimpse of the tremendous potential of the emerging fashion brands in Hong Kong. People ask what is fashion. Fashion is about attitude; it is about making a statement. Tonight, we are seeing a rather strong statement with all the fabulous styles and talents here on stage. You want to follow the best fashion? No need to look elsewhere. Hong Kong has the best.
Thanks must be given to the Fashion Farm Foundation, for bringing out the best in our fashion industry. I have known Edith and the gang from the Foundation for a long time. The Foundation has been an active player in promoting the local fashion design field within and beyond Hong Kong. They have organised many events and activities such as catwalk shows, exhibitions, pop-up shops and pop-up showcases. I applaud the Foundation for all your contributions to the fashion industry in Hong Kong, and it's been a privilege for the Government to work with the Foundation. We are glad to be part of this "Friday Dress Hong Kong" extravaganza. I am sure the support of over $4 million provided by the Government will be a good investment.
Indeed, "Friday Dress Hong Kong" is a good example of how partnership between the public and private sectors can unleash the potential of our fashion industry. I understand this event collaborates with quite a number of shopping malls, as well as Hong Kong International Airport, to showcase the work of some 40 participating local designer brands to both locals and visitors. I wish the event every success, and I look forward to more interesting programmes in the coming months. All these initiatives from the Foundation will give our local fashion designers even more exposure opportunities.
You may ask, what about the Government? How do we help? We certainly attach great importance to the development of the design industry, especially fashion design. Our Create Hong Kong office has been providing funding support to worthwhile projects that promote fashion design. And our support for fashion design will only get better. In this year's Budget, the Financial Secretary has allocated resources totalling $500 million to launch measures on a pilot basis for the development of our fashion industry. We plan to augment the promotion of our fashion designers and brands in local and overseas fashion events. We will roll out a dedicated incubation programme for up-and-coming fashion design startups. We will provide fashion design graduates with more opportunities for overseas internships and study opportunities. And we will subsidise more talents to participate in international exhibitions.
An advisory committee comprising mainly members of the fashion industry will be formed to advise on and co-ordinate the implementation of these measures. All in all, the Government will work hand-in-hand with our local fashion designers and the industry. Together, we will establish our city as a creative capital and regional fashion hub in Asia.
Let's enjoy the evening. Thank you very much.
Ends/Friday, May 29, 2015