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HKTDC Wine Fair Opens with Record Number of Exhibitors
Hong Kong Event Puts Spotlight on Partner Country Australia

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Officiating at today’s opening ceremony for the HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair are (left to right): Yvonne Choi, Permanent Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development (Commerce, Industry and Tourism); Les Luck, Australian Consul General Hong Kong; Henry Tang, Chief Secretary for Administration; Fred Lam, Executive Director, HKTDC; and Michael O’Brien, Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries, South Australia

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An exhibitor (right) shares a glass of Australian wine with Henry Tang, Chief Secretary for Administration. Australia, this year’s Partner Country, has 69 exhibitors at the fair. A number of activities have been arranged to introduce Australian wines to fair visitors

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Hong Kong exhibitor ASC Fine Wines has been described as “China’s greatest fine wine importer” by wine critic Robert M Parker, Jr. Company General Manager Robert Temple talks wine with Henry Tang, Chief Secretary for Administration

4 November 2010 – Nearly 700 exhibitors from 30 countries and regions, a new fair record, are taking part in the third edition of the HKTDC Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair, which opened today at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) and continues through 6 November.

Organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the fair was formally opened by Guest of Honour Henry Tang, the Hong Kong Government’s Chief Secretary for Administration.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, HKTDC Executive Director Fred Lam noted how far the event has come since it was introduced in 2008, less than six months after Hong Kong scrapped its wine duties. “The results have been nothing short of remarkable. In the first nine months of 2010, Hong Kong imported more than HK$4.67 billion worth of wine, up 72 per cent over the same period last year,” he said, adding that wine exports rose 52 per cent, to HK$884 million over the same period. In step with the industry, exhibitor numbers have expanded nearly 30 per cent over last year.

Australia as Partner Country
Australia is this year’s Partner Country. Highlighting the fair’s many Australian activities, Friday morning’s Vino Syrah/Shiraz Forum will feature renowned Shiraz producers from Australia, Chile, the United States and elsewhere.

The fair offers more than 30 side activities, including the Italian Cuisine World Summit sponsored by Vinitaly. The summit features culinary demonstrations and wine at the Italian Pavilion throughout the fair. Guest master chefs, many of them from Michelin-star restaurants, reveal their food preparation secrets at cooking classes, offering visitors a chance to sample their creations along with some fine Italian wine.

The Asia Top Sommeliers’ Summit, 5 November, will bring together leading sommeliers from around the world. This afternoon’s Wine Industry Conference will offer insights on topics such as wine production on the Chinese mainland. As well, a series of master classes are being organised by the Institute of Masters of Wine, the Wine & Spirit Education Trust and the Asia Wine Service and Education Centre.

Friends of Wine
The fair also features special sections, including those focused on Liquor & Beverage Products, Wine Accessories & Equipment and Wine Services. One section, Friends of Wine, showcases items that complement wine, including baked products, confectionery, biscuits and pasta.

Wine storage and management will also be under the spotlight, with representatives from the Hong Kong Quality Assurance Agency talking about their recently launched Wine Storage Management Systems Certification Scheme. Those behind such accredited facilities as Crown Wine Cellars, DHL and Supply Chain Solutions will speak about their best practices.

The second edition of the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit Competition returns, in collaboration with the London International Wine & Spirit Competition. Some 1,300 wines were entered this year, and international guest judge is Tim Atkin, an award-winning wine writer. Best Wine with Sashimi is a new addition to the wine-and-food-pairing competition, alongside the four existing categories: Best Wine with Dim Sum, Kung Pao Chicken, Braised Abalone and Peking Duck. The award presentation will be held during tonight’s gala dinner.

Some 65 buying missions from 41 countries and regions are also on hand, representing nearly 2,000 buyers from companies such as Australia’s ILG Supplier Co-operative, France’s Millesima, India’s Sula Selections and major chain stores such as Lawson Inc from Japan and LOTTE from South Korea.

Public Visitors
The fair will open to the public, 18 and above, on the last day, 6 November, with tickets on sale at select Circle K convenience stores and the fairground, at HK$200 per person. Public visitors will be able take part in The Most Beloved Wine voting game, with the award presentation ceremony taking place the same day. Visitors can also gain insights at several seminars, ranging from How to Build a Winning Wine Collection to Australian Wine ABCs.

In addition to wine tastings and master classes, the Wine Gallery features a wide variety of wine, wine accessories and books from around the world, with a focus on Australia. On a first-come-first-served basis, public visitors may receive a free Lucaris crystal wine glass.

In conjunction with the fair, some 100 participating restaurants are waiving their corkage charges through 14 November, with a coupon that can be obtained from the fair’s Visitor Promotion Counter. Members of Asia Miles will be able to enjoy up to 1,000 complimentary miles when they purchase wine or spirits from exhibitors at the fair on 6 November.

The wine fair coincides with three other fairs this week. Eco Expo Asia runs through 6 November at AsiaWorld-Expo. The HKTDC Hong Kong Optical Fair and the Hong Kong International Medical Devices and Supplies Fair continue through 5 November at the HKCEC.

Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Fair website: www.hktdc.com/hkwinefair

Media Enquiries

HKTDC Corporate Communication Department
Joe Kainz                     Tel: (852) 2584 4216             Email: joe.kainz@hktdc.org

About the HKTDC
A statutory body established in 1966, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) is the international marketing arm for Hong Kong-based traders, manufacturers and service providers. With more than 40 global offices, including 11 on the Chinese mainland, the HKTDC promotes Hong Kong as a platform for doing business with China and throughout Asia. The HKTDC also organises trade fairs and business missions to connect companies with opportunities in Hong Kong and on the mainland, while providing information via trade publications, research reports and online. For more information, please visit: www.hktdc.com 

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Content provided by Hong Kong Trade Development Council