December 21, 2016
George Wing Kee
HCC Vice President & Co-founding Member
Director P & G Mode Realty
How long have you been doing business in Haymarket?
Peter volunteered me to join his real estate business in Haymarket when I retired after selling the family food businesses in Zetland so I have been involved with P & G Mode Realty over 18 years.
What are the main changes you have seen in the area?
In 1948 when I first came to Haymarket with my dad to buy produce at the Markets. The area was a hectic mix of Chinese and Italian market gardeners heckling, pushing loads of cabbages, celery, bags of potatoes ….orderly confusion and congestion. Now, half a century later, we rub shoulders with bankers ,financiers , property developers, tourists from all over the world.
Could you describe what sort of businesses and people the area attracts?
Once cookhouses run by families from the Southern Province of Guangdong served the mainly Chinese locals, now food remains a dominant attraction to Chinatown, and with all these many cultures the area attracts (these originally) small stores have become empires. These businesses range from crafts to clothing, IT and supermarkets. With the arrival of capital rich companies from China and thousands of students, Haymarket is entering a new phase and a new society.
How would you describe HCC?
Leading into HCC’s 10th Anniversary in 2016, HCC has been an outstanding beacon in Chinatown, a voice where needed, a responsible citizen with a Committee very dedicated to growing its respectability and influence in the wider community.
What do you see happening in 2016?
In 2016 I see the HCC involved in more projects in Chinatown; .tourism, business seminars, cultural events, networking with other groups and with mammoth developments surrounding Chinatown we need to be vigilant.
MEDIA article: Mastering Mandarin Key to Improving Relations
“In response to an article discussing the issue where HSC students are deserting Mandarin as they fear it will bring down their HSC marks.
As an Australian-born Chinese I quite understand the difficulty Australian students find in learning the language, which even I find hard to get my tongue around.
Regardless, the introductions of Mandarin to primary schools has opened a gateway for young students to understand some of the culture and traditions of the ancient dynasty through sings and folk dancing.
While many may never master the language, they will nevertheless, gain insight into the lifestyles of our Asian neighbours.
If we want to encourage co-operation between Australia and China then any steps taken to learn the language of our partners should be earnestly pursued. The Telegraph editor is correct in saying “it should be all about equipping students to best meet the future.”
George Wing Kee, Haymarket