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CE's speech at Hong Kong Week opening ceremony (with photos)

Following is the translation of the speech delivered by the Chief Executive, Mr Donald Tsang, at the opening ceremony of Hong Kong Week at Expo 2010 Shanghai China (Shanghai Expo) today (October 20):

Honourable Mayor Han, Vice Chairman Wang, honourable guests, ladies and gentlemen,

Hello everybody! Today marks the official opening of Hong Kong Week for World Expo 2010 Shanghai China. Hong Kong Week highlights the essence of Hong Kong's participation in Shanghai Expo. We are honoured to host Hong Kong Week as the finale to the activity weeks of other provinces, regions and municipalities. We have also taken this opportunity to showcase Hong Kong's rich and diversified cultural aspects to the world, our motherland and our friends in Shanghai.

During this five-day programme, we will organise some 20 programmes and performances both inside and outside the Expo Park. These will include a daily parade inside the Expo, which features a giant "Hong Kong Pop Up!" book and other elements which will give you a taste of Hong Kong's blend of Eastern and Western culture. Hong Kong's famous artists and performing groups will offer star-studded performances during Hong Kong Week, entertaining our audience with music, dance, Cantonese opera, movies, fashion and innovative uses of smart card technology.

Shanghai Expo has provided Hong Kong with an invaluable opportunity to show the world Hong Kong's achievements and unique advantages under "One Country, Two Systems". This is by far the biggest participation by Hong Kong at any Expo. Taking the theme "Hong Kong - Potential Unlimited", the Hong Kong Pavilion showcases Hong Kong's connectivity with the rest of the world, the future and nature. We have also taken part in the Urban Best Practices Area Exhibition to highlight Hong Kong's extensive use of smart card technology under the theme "Smart Card.Smart City.Smart Life". We have also had a strong Internet presence through the Online Expo. Throughout Expo, Hong Kong has organised more than 60 cultural programmes, exhibitions, conferences and seminars to promote Hong Kong's development in different areas. These activities have considerably strengthened Hong Kong's links and exchanges with Shanghai, which in turn has opened up new opportunities for various services and sectors.

Our Expo endeavours have been well received in many quarters. This is the culmination of detailed planning and hard work from all those involved, including colleagues in government, volunteers, sponsors, contractors, event organisers and organisations, and of course our artists and performers. I thank you all sincerely for such a great job on behalf of Hong Kong.

Thanks to the dedication of all concerned, and the excellent leadership and co-ordination from the Shanghai Government, the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Co-ordination, Shanghai Expo has been hailed as the biggest and most successful Expo ever held. I offer my wholehearted congratulations to Shanghai Government, the Bureau and all participating offices. Well done!

Thank you.