'Outsider' will head Create Hong Kong

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 05 April, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 05 April, 2009, 12:00am

An outsider with a creative mind, rather than a rigid-thinking government official, will head Create Hong Kong, the commerce minister says.

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Rita Lau Ng Wai-lan said there would be an open recruitment process to choose the chief of a new office to co-ordinate the development of the creative industries. The office will be set up in a couple of months.

'We are planning for an open recruitment,' Mrs Lau said in a radio interview yesterday. 'We hope that we can find such a talent who can lead the development of creative industries.'

The creative community welcomed the news. Alan Wan Siu-lun, secretary of the Hong Kong Comics and Animation Federation, hoped a person with an open mind who could think 'out of the box' could be found to head the office.

'Hong Kong lacks someone who is bold enough to try out new things and new ideas, but we need people like that to help develop our creative economy,' Mr Wan said.

Mrs Lau said the office would act as a one-stop service to create a much friendlier environment for people in the creative industries.

The office would be established after the Legislative Council's Finance Committee approved the project.

Mrs Lau said a HK$300 million fund had been earmarked to help develop creative industries apart from film and design, which the government already funds.

Create Hong Kong would manage this fund and it would be open to receiving applications, she said.

'My idea is to set up an advisory board to take care of the applications,' Mrs Lau said, adding that it would be necessary to seek the opinions of professionals when considering the applications' merits.

The new creative industries office would take the initiative in doing outreach work, so that the community could be part of the development of the creative economy, she said.

She hoped that scholarships, subsidies and overseas training opportunities could be awarded to young students who showed potential in the creative fields so that their talents could be fully developed.