6m people attended events last year at convention centre. Empty shell? Hardly

PUBLISHED : Friday, 02 March, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 02 March, 2012, 12:00am


I refer to the letter by Jean Afford ('No need for more ugly monstrosities', February 26).

Fortunately, those who are really interested and listen are very aware that the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre is one of the top venues of its type in the world.

It exceeds the objectives and goals set at every stage of its evolutionary ascent to its current industry status, beginning in 1988.

It remains the envy of governments and industry representatives globally.

Sadly, your correspondent, referring to the convention centre as an 'empty shell', fails to substantiate her claim.

Further, such lack of objectivity overshadows the points that count: the venue's successes and its results.

It has hosted more than 42,000 events since 1988. It averages more than six events daily. Nearly six million delegates, buyers, exhibitors, entertainers, event guests and other visitors attended events throughout the last fiscal year.

Some of the world's most prestigious exhibitions and congresses occur in the venue. This seems far from an 'empty shell'.

As for the need for additional space, it is for the customer to determine, just as for any other business. The preferred location is for the customer to say.

Those who are objective will seek out the opinion of those organisers who have chosen Hong Kong and the convention centre, have experienced its successes at its location, need more space for their event to grow, and add so much to the economy when their event is held there.

The customers are the market drivers; their demand drives supply and location in any city.

As a veteran of the industry for more than 50 years, I have learned much through experience within and exposure to this extraordinary industry.

I am able to put aside the selective and less than objective opinions that a few wish to express, though I respect their right to do so.

As to whether we are talking about an ugly monstrosity, could that have to do with personal opinion, too little knowledge and/or a hidden agenda?

Cliff Wallace, managing director, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre