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Tuesday, Apr 23, 2024

Hongkongers flock to Gourmet Marketplace for delicacies as Paul Chan wishes citizens happy lives

Excited citizens flocked to the Gourmet Marketplace in the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on Saturday as authorities said free tickets to the two-day event under the Happy Hong Kong campaign had been snapped up already.
The marketplace has more than 100 stalls providing international delicacies, Chinese cuisines, and local flavors to participants.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said the city has seen more people flow and economic activities since the border reopening. Business is booming for the catering sector, and the retail industry becomes energized once again, Chan added.

Chan expected “not only a better economy but also happy lives for everyone.”

According to the Home Affairs Department, the free tickets reserved for distribution at the venue were all out around noon.

A citizen named Cheung said he had been queuing outside the venue since 8 am. He added he only decided to come to the marketplace two days ago and arrived very early this morning as he worried there were few same-day tickets saved for distribution.

Chan, alongside Secretary for Home and Youth Affairs Alice Mak Mei-kuen and catering lawmaker Tommy Cheung Yu-yan, also tried out the gourmet offered there, like meatballs in satay sauce and pork knuckles.

Chan also cooked a Hong Kong-style egg waffle in a matcha chocolate flavor on his own. Cheung praised Chan’s skills after tasting the egg waffle and joked Chan should open his own stall.

Some citizens said they were thrilled to be coming to today’s marketplace as they were almost overwhelmed by boredom during the pandemic. Others said the food was expensive but would use their consumption voucher to pay for it.

Exhibitors were surprised that the government proactively organized and staged the gourmet marketplace but were concerned they didn’t have enough food stock, pointing to citizens’ high purchasing power and the significant number of participants.

The second and third Gourmet Marketplace will be staged on May 6 and 7 at Sha Tin Town Hall Plaza and Sha Tin Park and June 3 and 4 at the harbor-front VESSEL in Kwun Tong, respectively.

Entry is free for both events, and no admission ticket is required.

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