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The 7th China Synergy Programme for Outstanding Youth Commissioning Ceremony

The 7th China Synergy Programme for Outstanding Youth
Commissioning Ceremony

Tuesday, 4 July 2006
Loke Yew Hall, The University of Hong Kong

Address by Dr Alice Lam,
Chairman of University Grants Committee

Chief Executive, ladies and gentlemen and students,

May I first say what a pleasure it is to have our Chief Executive here today gracing this event. That really means a lot to the participants. Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule. I would also like to express my warmest welcome to the delegates and guests who have just arrived in Hong Kong. I am delighted to have the opportunity to address such a young and energetic group of descendents of the dragon.

If you read the comments by eminent economists and experts in the world these days, you hear one common theme and the unanimity is astonishing. What are the prospects for the dollar? That depends on China. The oil price? China. World growth? China. Although the economy of China is still not yet as large as Europe or the United States, it is China that is changing the global economy. The reason is "marginalism" - very often, change is determined by what happens at the margin. The extra - or short - apple sets the price for all apples. As a large and growing producer, exporter and consumer, the growth of the Chinese economy is changing the marginal levels of global supply and demand.

Sun Tzu once wrote that, "if you know the competition and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles." Well, translating that to a more modern setting, I am sure that knowing more about China and your heritage will bring immense benefits for the rest of your lives. And at the same time, China and the delegates from the mainland and Hong Kong will also benefit from the eye-opening insight and experiences each delegate brings from around the world.

Through CSP, I anticipate an unsurpassable cultural immersion strengthened by bonds of friendship. Not only will this programme be educational, but it will also be a wonderful chance to meet other motivated young leaders of tomorrow. It will also be interesting to find out about each other's diverse backgrounds and to know that, ultimately, you are all connected by your Chinese heritage.

The best part of the programme is the prospect of making new friends and learning about all the different cultures which you have been brought up in. From a cultural sense, seeing China with your own eyes will illuminate your understanding of Chinese traditions and philosophy. From an educational perspective, interacting with peers from around the world and meeting distinguished representatives, offers so much more than reading a thousand books. China is a land full of rich, millennia old legacies and traditions, mixed with cutting-edge technology and modernization. I am sure there is much to explore in the coming days.

Finally, I would like to say that CSP7 is made possible by the work of the Organizing Committee, the generosity of the sponsors, and unfailing support and encouragement from private and government organizations and individuals. In particular, there are 3 notable sponsors who each contributed HK$500,000 for this year's CSP, and I understand that the Organizing Committee will recognize their generosity in a souvenir presentation ceremony that will take place soon. I would like to express my wholehearted gratitude and deepest thanks to the sponsors and all the other people involved.

Thank you.

UGC Secretariat
4 July 2006