Keeping in mind this global shift towards environmental protection, Hong Kong should aim to be at the forefront of the sustainable fashion industry in Asia. With its integrated ecosystem of design and manufacturing, Hong Kong can leverage this advantage to incorporate sustainable fashion brands into its marketing and supply chain.

Although Hong Kong has programmes like the Design Incubation Programme and the Fashion Incubation Programme, they fall short in showcasing our advanced level of culture. By leveraging Hong Kong’s connectivity to developed cities and Southeast Asian markets, along with the expertise of local designers and manufacturers in the Greater Bay Area, we can establish a reputation for Hong Kong design in sustainable fashion.

This vision requires involvement from all sectors. To transform Hong Kong into a leader in sustainable fashion, we propose forming an action committee comprising local fashion designers and businesses to spearhead the campaign, with the government’s endorsement.

This initiative could generate interest in developing recycling facilities, sustainable design brands and upcycling products. Success would attract more investment and international engagement, bolstering Hong Kong’s economy and enhancing its global image.

Jesse Friedlander, Maryland, US, and Sau Ching Choi, Peng Chau, Hong Kong

Tourism strategy must not be one-size-fits-all

I recently visited Japan’s Naoshima art island, which prompted me to think about our short- and long-term plans to attract more visitors to our beloved city. We have 263 islands in Hong Kong. Perhaps some of them can be developed to support our budding artists, while at the same time becoming a tourist draw?

As visitor interests become more diverse, Hong Kong should refine and sharpen its tourism strategy. Developing art islands would be one way to draw visitors interested in the arts.

Here are some other ideas. According to Tourism Board statistics, 26.78 million visitors came to Hong Kong in the first 10 months of the year, of whom nearly 80 per cent were from the mainland. Should there be separate tourist campaigns – one for mainland Chinese and one for international visitors – as their interests may be different?

For example, for the international visitor we should promote our “connectivity” to both mainland China and Southeast Asia. Perhaps we can consider doing a joint campaign with Cathay Pacific, linking proposed itineraries with flights throughout the region. We should also promote our ability to help people plan their visits not just to Hong Kong but also other parts of China and the rest of Asia.

How about educational visits to the Greater Bay Area, where people can visit leading Chinese companies such as DJI, the world’s largest recreational drone manufacturer, based across the border?

I assume we have good media advisers to help us mount targeted media campaigns that cater to specific audiences.

Hong Kong is a safe, vibrant city that should be promoted for more than its “night vibe”. Our beautiful harbour and walking trails should be featured more. Our diversified culinary choices, especially the range of regional Chinese cuisine available here, are world-class.

In the longer term, Hong Kong needs to develop some new major attractions. For example, why not reinvigorate Aberdeen? Seattle has its fish markets, while San Francisco has its Fisherman’s Wharf. Another idea is to invite bids to build a hotel in Kau Sai Chau, which, with its three 18-hole golf courses, would appeal to golfers and those who enjoy the outdoors.

Hong Kong must seriously explore its options.

Paul M.F. Cheng, Mid-Levels

Ensure mental health support is available to all

Two weeks after Matthew Perry’s death, tributes to the actor – most recently from his Friends co-stars – were still making the headlines, reflecting the sense of loss that comes when we encounter a life cut short.
Perry was struggling with addiction issues and alcohol abuse, which indirectly contributed to his death. His passing, and that of pop star Coco Lee earlier this year, are a sad reminder that mental health issues can affect anyone, regardless of their fame or success.

Mental health struggles are a natural and normal part of the human experience. No one is immune to the effects of addiction, depression, anxiety or other mental health disorders. It’s important to seek help when we need it, and to provide support for loved ones who may be struggling with mental health issues.

A big barrier to seeking help is the stigma surrounding mental illness. Many people are afraid to even talk about their struggles because they fear being judged or misunderstood. It’s important to create a safe environment for people to open up.

Another barrier is the lack of access to mental health services in many parts of the world. Mental health services are often underfunded and undervalued, which makes it difficult for people to access the help they need.

Mental disorders such as depression are treatable. As a community, we must prioritise mental wellness and ensure adequate resources are allocated to improve access to mental health services. This is essential in addressing these challenges on a global scale.

Dr Yuehai Xiao, Jingyi He and Tianyu Zhang, Hunan Normal University, Changsha

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