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Remarks by SITB at the Farewell Reception on 8 December 2000

December, 8 2000

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has been our great pleasure and privilege to host ITU TELECOM ASIA 2000 and to welcome policy makers, regulators and market leaders from all over the world to come to this most important telecommunications event in the Asia Pacific.

You have had a very hectic, but productive week. I know because of my first hand experience in attending the forum sessions and the exhibition for the past five days. Three words summarise my impression: "energy", "enthusiasm", "enrichment". Since you have been so busy managing the exhibition or speaking at the forum, you might have missed a few interesting facts and figures.

  • More than 50,000 visitors [OFTA to confirm latest figure] have come through our doors by this evening. We expect many more as we welcome the IT enthusiastic local public tomorrow for the second public day and the last day of exhibition;

  • The number of Forum participants exceeded 1,200;

  • Over 1,000 international journalists and more than 240 filming crew covered this prestigious event;

  • The freight handlers recorded around 10,000 cubic-metre-tonnes of exhibits and fitting materials;

  • Our web site for Asia 2000 was recorded about 50,000 hits per day, its popularity exceeded the Government Information Centre, the top ranking Government web site, by almost a third; and

  • A lot of calories were expended; participants consumed something like 10,000 cups of coffee and tea, 5,000 cans of soft drinks, 1,250 cans of beer and 2,500 portions of sandwiches a day during the event.

The above are indicators to show that the event has been a huge success, because of your hard work. For our part, we hope Hong Kong has shown you true Hong Kong style efficiency and hospitality. We also tried to make sure that it was not all work and no fun for you. I hope you have had a chance to join some of our side programmes like the harbour cruise, which I learnt was overwhelmingly popular. Quite a few of you [460 people enrolled], before coming in just now, joined the sunset walk out here on the Peak. I am sure these will bring fond memories after you have returned home with the business successes that you have achieved while you were here.

Now it is time for you to put aside technology and business deals, relax and enjoy the jazzy atmosphere and fine cuisine. We have picked the Peak to host the farewell reception so that you can enjoy the scenic view of the Victoria Harbour of Hong Kong, which is probably the most beautiful night scenery in the world.

I wish to thank Ericsson and SmarTone for their generous co-sponsorship of this Farewell Reception. I thank you all again for coming to ITU TELECOM ASIA 2000 and for sharing this evening with us.

To our overseas guests, I look forward to welcoming you to Hong Kong again very soon.

Thank you.