FOR the first time in Canadian history, two Hongkong immigrants have won the opportunity to represent constituencies in Canada's next federal election, expected to be held in October. The nominations are being heralded as a landmark event for Hongkong immigrants to Canada, signalling a growing political voice for all of the country's Asian communities. Raymond Chan, a University of British Columbia (UBC) engineer, narrowly defeated his opponent, Indo-Canadian businessman Herb Dhaliwal, to become the Liberal Party candidate in the Vancouver suburb of Richmond earlier this year. Meanwhile, Vancouver dentist Wan Kin-kong won the Progressive Conservative Party nomination for Vancouver South, defeating businessman Geoff Chutter in the largest nomination meeting anywhere in Canada. ''We can really declare the Liberal Party is a true rainbow party that has not only Caucasians but also those people from all around the world,'' Mr Chan said in his acceptance speech. ''It's a great start to my political career. ''I will concentrate on fighting against the new changes to the immigration laws which make it tough on new Chinese/Canadian immigrants, and look at setting up new programmes to help them adapt to the Canadian way of life,'' he said. ''I came to Canada in 1969 at the age of 17, with only $20 in my pocket. ''I know how tough it is.'' After getting a science degree from the University of British Columbia while managing two successful restaurants, Mr Chan, 40, is a senior engineer at the UBC nuclear accelerator physics facility, and leads the charge in advancing Canadian awareness of the pro-democracy movement in China after the events at Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989. Mr Chan spearheaded support for Chinese dissidents Liu Yijun and Lin Lin, lobbying the Canadian Government to accept the two women as political refugees after they were released from prison in Hongkong. While Liberal party officials said Mr Chan won the nomination by a slim margin of 250 votes, Mr Wan defeated his Progressive Conservative rival in a vote of 1,226 to 891. Mr Wan, who was born in China and raised in Hongkong, said the huge Chinese/Canadian turn out for him at last month's meeting was a clear example of new Prime Minister Kim Campbell's return to politics of inclusion. ''We are a mosaic not a melting pot,'' he said. ''When I first took on this job in January, it was indicated to me that if I brought in 400 members I would be breaking all records and it would be a walk in the park,'' he said. Although the two candidates are looking at sitting across from each other in the House of Commons after the election, both are expected to fare well in their respective constituencies. ''I will try for improvements to the entrepreneur immigration system if I'm elected to represent the riding in Ottawa,'' Mr Chan said. Mr Wan has criticised the Canadian Government spending and debt. He said that all Canadian governments must adopt bottom-line economics, even to the point of imposing user fees on the existing national health care programme.