Rockit has battled for survival in the rough and tumble of rock-concert promotion, but its organisers keep shrugging off official indifference and lack of support, and the crowds keep coming back. The achievement of this homegrown festival reminds people of the possibilities of funding such events successfully without the need for big budgets like the HK$100 million of taxpayers' money that was spent on Harbour Fest in 2003. For many, 2003 was a year to forget, a year the gloom and fear associated with the Sars outbreak compounded the lingering effects of economic recession. The taxpayer-funded concerts were aimed at bringing top musical acts to Hong Kong to help put the battered city back on the map and lift the spirits of its people. But Harbour Fest was mired in controversy due to budget blowouts and ticketing problems. Many of the fans at this weekend's Rockit festival at Victoria Park might not care about Harbour Fest's woes. Neither the fledgling annual rock event, also launched in 2003, nor its fans are readily identified with the choreographed glitz and glamour of Harbour Fest. The respective venues reflect the difference. Harbour Fest was rolled out expansively on the magnificent Tamar site at Admiralty. Rockit is sandwiched between two no-noise zones at Victoria Park. The first is RTHK's live political show City Forum, which finishes at 2pm, and the second is the 11pm curfew that restores the peace and quiet. The Harbour Fest concerts were undertaken with the best of intentions. There was a presumption that the event would rely on volunteer organisers and corporate support and sponsorship. But three separate inquiries found that the concerts were ill-conceived, approved too hastily, were inadequately monitored and poorly implemented. There has not been another Harbour Fest, while Rockit is in its fourth year. It has added diversity to the music scene in a city where fans have long cast envious glances at countries such as Singapore and Japan, which have friendlier environments for live events. The organisers see no reason why an event similar to Fuji Rock should not succeed in Hong Kong. Hong Kong prides itself on having built an international finance, business and trading centre with hard work and enterprise. But its efforts to cash in on tourism tend to overlook the homegrown enterprise on which the city's success was built. The title of last week's policy address by Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen - 'Proactive, Pragmatic and Always People First' - should serve as a reminder that its people are Hong Kong's biggest asset, and best investment. Ironically, in the aftermath of Harbour Fest, it was pointed out that ticket sales of nearly HK$50 million proved there was an appetite for large-scale concerts in Hong Kong. Rockit shows there is still an entrepreneurial appetite in Hong Kong for the risk involved in putting them on.