Speech by SCED at opening ceremony of Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair and Salon de TE 2016 (English only)
Following is the speech by the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, at the opening ceremony of Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair and Salon de TE 2016 today (September 6):
Margaret (Executive Director of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), Ms Margaret Fong), Kenneth (President of Hong Kong Watch Manufacturers Association, Mr Kenneth Wong), distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
Good morning. It is my great pleasure to join you here for the opening of the Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair and Salon de TE 2016. A very warm welcome to you all, especially those who have travelled a long distance to be here with us today.
The Rio Olympic Games concluded just a few weeks ago. I love watching the Olympic Games. It is a perfect example that illustrates how important time-keeping is. A fraction of a second can make all the difference. Just ask Mahé Drysdale of New Zealand. He won the rowing event men's single sculls by five thousandths of a second, or look at one of Michael Phelps' races four years ago, in which he won the 100-metre butterfly by one hundredth of a second.
The timepiece market is likewise very competitive. Product lifecycles are shortening, presenting an ever-rising challenge for our manufacturers. I am very delighted to see that our industry is rising to the challenge. Our manufacturers are responding swiftly to customer needs. They have stepped up their efforts to scale up the value chain by enhancing the quality of their products and developing fashionable designs. Some have even started to cross over with different sectors, such as tech companies or smart devices entrepreneurs, to create products that are "techy" as well as aesthetically pleasing. These value-added moves will make all the difference, separating the trend leader from the also-ran.
Ladies and gentlemen, today is indeed a day to celebrate. The Watch & Clock Fair has firmly established itself as the largest of its kind in the world and a trend setter for the industry. This year, more than 800 exhibitors have packed the exhibition halls, and they will once again treat buyers to an exciting show of their best branded collections and innovative designs.
I would like to congratulate the Hong Kong Watch Manufacturers Association, the Federation of Hong Kong Watch Trades and Industries and HKTDC for bringing this spectacular and world-renowned event to fruition. I am sure we all look forward to catching a glimpse of the dazzling and trendy designs of the timepiece collection. Let the show begin. Thank you.
Ends/Tuesday, September 6, 2016