Hong Kong 2003
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Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China

The Amateur Sports Federation and Olympic Committee (SF&OC) of Hong Kong was founded in 1949-50 and reorganised as a National Olympic Committee (NOC) in 1951. It changed to its present name of Sports Federation and Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China with effect from March 8, 1999. The federation is a member of the International Olympic Committee, the Olympic Council of Asia and the Association of National Olympic Committees and has been responsible for organising Hong Kong's participation in such major multi-sports games as the Olympic, Asian, East Asian, Pacific and National Games. With a membership of 72 National Sports Associations (NSAs), it represents the collective voice of the Hong Kong sports community. Office-bearers, elected biennially, include the President, eight Vice-Presidents, the Honorary Secretary General, a maximum of three Honorary Deputy Secretaries, and the Honorary Treasurer.

Members of the SF&OC are NSAs, which are in turn affiliated to their International Federations (IFs) and Asian Federations (AFs). They have the responsibility to develop and promote their specific sports and are managed by elected officers under either the limited company or registered society ordinances. They are empowered to coordinate and conduct a wide range of activities related to their sports, from organising sports and recreation programmes for beginners to training of elite athletes; organising and sanctioning participation in local and overseas competitions and tournaments and the training of coaches and referees. NSAs implement and enforce local and international rules and regulations, and they represent Hong Kong in meetings of the IFs and the AFs.

The elected officers of the SF&OC and the NSAs are volunteers of high standing and expertise in their respective fields of sport. They are also the cornerstones in safeguarding the autonomy of the NOC/NSAs and in assuring a high quality of sports and recreation in Hong Kong.

For half a century, the federation has coordinated a comprehensive three-month Festival of Sport, commencing in March every year. It also organises extensive education programmes for sports leaders, administrators, coaches and technical officials free of charge, notably through the Hong Kong Olympic Academy which offers free sports management and sport science courses and programmes.

With the support of sponsors, the federation organises each year the Hong Kong Sports Stars Awards, the 'Oscars' of local sport, to recognise the achievements of top sportsmen and women. The 2002 prize presentation was held on March 10 in conjunction with the federation's annual spring dinner, which attracted a large turnout at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.

In October, Hong Kong sent a total of 87 young athletes and 31 officials to the 5th National Intercity Games held in Changsha. The delegation competed in 13 out of 29 events and won two gold medals and one bronze medal. Prior to its departure, a combined flag presentation ceremony and torch relay was held to publicise the Games locally; the torch relay began at the Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai and finished at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza in Tsim Sha Tsui, where the flag was presented.

In June, Hong Kong submitted a bid to the East Asian Games Association to host the 5th East Asian Games in 2009. The sports sector and the Government joined hands in this endeavour, with a Bid Committee being formed under the chairmanship of the federation's President. The committee's hard work in campaigning bore fruit on November 3 when the East Asian Games Association, meeting in Macau, chose Hong Kong as the host city.

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