March 8, 2022
Today, our thoughts are with the many thousands of people in New South Wales and Queensland whose lives have been dramatically affected by the heavy rains and devastating floods in the last 2 weeks. Many have lost their homes and many more have lost their personal possessions and belongings. Our hearts go out to all of them and we will do what we can to help ameliorate their pain. Our thoughts are also with the millions of people in Ukraine who have been made homeless by a war that has caused enormous and endless sufferings. May there be an early resolution of the conflict so that these ordinary innocent individuals can begin to rebuild their lives.
I am otherwise pleased to report that the last few weeks have been a busy and productive period for Haymarket and the Chamber. The launch of the City of Sydney’s Sydney Lunar Festival on 29 January 2022 in Chinatown attracted more than 5000 people to the area on that one single evening. This was a marvellous start to the Year of the Tiger. According to figures released by the City, the Festival also attracted a huge audience of more than 750,000 over a two-week period. Very encouraging numbers indeed!
On 1 February 2022, on behalf of the Chamber, I advocated for the return of international tourists for the whole of Australia during an interview with Lydia Feng of ABC TV. Six days later, the Prime Minister announced the opening up of our international borders. A coincidence I am sure but one that is most welcomed as it means the long-awaited return of international tourists and students!
On 6 February 2022, the Chamber hosted a Lunar New Year performances event at Dixon Street Mall with funding from the City of Sydney in our effort to bring Sydneysiders back to Chinatown.
On 7 February 2022, my colleagues on the Executive Committee and I met with representatives of the City to discuss Council’s proposed public domain plan implementation for Chinatown.
On 11 February 2022, my colleague Jessie Xiao participated in the NSW Premier’s CBD Summit to discuss how the energy of the Sydney CBD may be recaptured as the city recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Chamber held its annual Chinese New Year Banquet on Friday 11 February 2022 in Chinatown attended by 320 of its members, VIP guests, dignitaries, and friends of the Chamber. It was truly a wonderful reunion dinner for the Haymarket Chamber family (full report here).
On 24 February 2022, the Chamber participated in a most productive roundtable discussion with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, City of Sydney Councillors and staff to discuss future plans and proposals for Chinatown’s Friday night market which was als0 attended by many other local organisations, businesses and their advisers.
As we move into March, a reminder to all that the City of Sydney’s 2022 Round 1 grants and sponsorships are now open, and so are applications f0r businesses to participate in VIVID Sydney. If you have been impacted by Omicron, you may also be eligible for payments under the NSW Government’s 2022 Small Business Support Program.
The 8th of March is also International Women’s Day and the Chamber fully supports the theme for this year’s observance by the United Nations, being “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. We embrace and join in the “recognition and celebration of the women and girls who are leading the charge on climate change adaptation and response”, and the honouring of “their leadership and contribution towards a sustainable future”.
(Photo: ABC TV 7 pm News, 1 Feb 2022)