World Economic Forum on Youtube

Sunday, September 23, 2007 10:06
Posted in category The Big Picture
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WEF Dalian

From September 6-8 the World Economic Forum held its meeting of New Champions in Dalian, which is one of China’s newest champions… for investment.

A testament to the power of Web 2.0, and the power of the internet, the entire summit has been put on Youtube, at the World Economic Forum Youtube Channel.

With 22 videos, roughly 20 hours of showing, one would need a weekend of non-stop broadband and Starbucks to watch the entire summit worth of videos…. However, I do suggest spending some time watching those that you feel are most pertinent to your organization or your own interest.

Overall, the discussions themselves are very interesting, and if there is one theme that I see throughout is that the level of Chinese panelists was much higher than the foreign side (on average). As Rebecca McKinnon pointed out in her analysis of the Soft Power debate, Thomas Friedman was out of his element.. and his comfort zone…. and he was not the only one. As I have spoken on a few panels in my day, and as I organize various panels in Shanghai, I am always interested to see how many foreign panelists end up on a panel (WEF, AMCHAM, or other) that have little China experience or knowledge….

With that in mind, some of the most interesting I have seen so far are:

1) Global Trade: Avoiding the Backlash: Avoiding the Backlash against the New Investors. Recent government interventions to protect national champions and domestic industries from international investment highlight increasing popular resistance to economic liberalization. Economic nationalism and financial protectionism risk hindering the new champions from achieving their maximum potential and fully contributing to economic growth.

Questions asked:

  1. Where is the balance between adequate regulation for environmental, food safety and national security concerns, and ensuring an open and competitive business environment?
  2. What is the role of governments in creating a positive investment climate for the new champions?
  3. How can governments, investors and companies work together to address the underlying concerns of the public?

Moderated by Michael J. Elliott, Editor, Time International

Panelists:

  • Neelie Kroes, Commissioner, Competition, European Commission, Brussels
  • Jean-Pierre Lehmann, Professor of International Political Economy, IMD (International Institute for Management Development), Switzerland
  • Kevan V. Watts, Vice-Chairman, Merrill Lynch & Co., Hong Kong SAR

2) Powering the New Champions How Green Can US$ 20 Trillion Be?
The International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts that US$ 20 trillion in new investment is required to meet world energy needs by 2030. Much of this investment is required in the world’s fastest-growing economies and expectations for China alone amount to 18% of the total. Innovative policies and technologies present significant opportunities to ensure economic growth and social development while minimizing the unintended costs of investments such as urban air pollution, resource depletion, health damage, water stress and climate change.

Questions asked:

  1. How can fast-growing economies realize and deploy domestic innovation and clean technology breakthroughs?
  2. How can a focus on enhanced energy efficiency and demand-side management enable sustainable growth in these countries?
  3. What are the practical, most cost-effective ways to reduce carbon emissions across various sectors, and how can these be scaled up in the context of a carbon constrained world?

Chaired by: Geoff Cutmore, Anchor, CNBC Europe, United Kingdom

Panelists:

  • Eileen Claussen, President, Pew Center on Global Climate Change, USA
  • Connie Hedegaard, Minister for the Environment of Denmark and Minister for Nordic Cooperation
  • Lars G. Josefsson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Vattenfall, Sweden
  • Ralph R. Peterson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, CH2M HILL Companies, USA
  • Zhang Xiaoqiang, Vice-Chairman, National Development and Reform Commission, People’s Republic of China

3) Soft Power: Influencing the World Influencing the World with a Chinese Touch
The global influence of Chinese values, culture and policy has grown alongside China’s rising economic status. Increased recognition of China’s relevance and heightened scrutiny has resulted in praise and criticism on a range of issues including development aid, climate change, trade, product quality standards, and regional peace and stability.

Questions asked:

  1. How can China capitalize on its strategic importance on global issues and build itself into a global partner?
  2. How will China’s relations with the major powers in the world, most notably the US, affect its endeavours to build a positive global image?
  3. How can Chinese enterprises serve as ambassadors for strengthening China’s image internationally?

Moderated by: Clay Chandler, Asia Editor and Senior Writer, Fortune Magazine

Panelists:

  • Thomas L. Friedman, Columnist, Foreign Affairs, The New York Times, USA
  • Jiang Jianqing, Chairman of the Board, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, People’s Republic of China
  • Catherine R. Kinney, President and Co-Chief Operating Officer, NYSE Euronext, USA
  • Li Ruogu, Chairman and President, Export-Import Bank of China, People’s Republic of China
  • Sha Zukang, Undersecretary-General, Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), United Nations, New York

4) China’s Future Growth Hubs Even as traditional business hubs, such as Beijing and Shanghai, seek to further reinforce their leading positions, the central government has been actively promoting investment in second-tier cities to balance growth and highlight opportunities throughout the country.

Questions Asked:

  1. Which cities are at the forefront to become China’s next growth hubs?
  2. What role do the new growth hubs play in China’s ongoing development? Which sectors will be key to the development of such growth hubs?
  3. What opportunities could these cities offer to international companies?

Moderated by: Clay Chandler, Asia Editor and Senior Writer, Fortune Magazine

Panelists:

  • Chen Baogen, Mayor of Xi’an, People’s Republic of China
  • Chen Lang, Chief Executive Officer, China Resources Vanguard, People’s Republic of China
  • Gou Lijun, Standing Member, CPC Tianjin Municipal Committee, People’s Republic of China
  • Wang Jianlin, President, Dalian Wanda Group, People’s Republic of China

5) IPR Protection in China The Myths and Realities of IPR Protection in China
Chinese companies are increasingly filing for patents domestically and internationally to protect their creation and innovation. Huawei Technologies ranked 13th internationally among corporations in 2006 in filing for international patents, ranking ahead of many recognized Western companies.

Questions asked

  1. How is IP protection evolving in China?
  2. What will be the ongoing role of the government in strengthening IP protection and encouraging innovation?
  3. What are domestic companies doing to reinforce support for IPR protection?
  4. How can domestic and international companies capitalize on this new shift?

Chaired by Thomas Easton, Asia Business Editor, The Economist

  • Feng Jun, Chairman, Beijing Huaqi Information Digital Technology, People’s Republic of China; Young Global Leade
  • Greg Shea, President and Managing Director, US Information Technology Office, People’s Republic of China
  • Tian Lipu, Minister of State, Intellectual Property Office, People’s Republic of China
  • Hiroshi Tsukamoto, President, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), Japan
  • Zhiguo Xiao, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board, Luming Science & Technology Group Co., People’s Republic of China
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