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Chinese finance executives, polar explorer, climate experts, call for action at Global Green Economic Forum

Date
26 November 2013
Chinese finance executives, polar explorer, climate experts, call for action at Global Green Economic Forum

HONG KONG: The annual Global Green Economic Forum (GGEF) brought together thought leaders from around the world in China this month, to generate insights and inspire actionable solutions to accelerate low carbon growth.

Organized by the China Enterprise Confederation (CEC) and the World Trade Centers Association (WTCA), GGEF was held in Guangzhou on November 8, with the theme 'Ecological Civilization City and Sustainable Corporate Development'. The forum gathered over a hundred global business leaders, government officials, environmental experts and scholars to share their experiences of feasible business models for profitable yet sustainable development.

Wang Zhongyu, Chairman. CEC, Dr. Annie S.C. Wu, Chair, WTCA, Ma Xiuhong, Chair, China Foreign Trade Centre and Chen Zhiying, Vice Mayor, Guangzhou, delivered welcome remarks, followed by Robert Swan OBE, one of the world’s preeminent polar explorers and environmental leaders, who delivered the keynote speech for the forum. Robert Swan shared challenges he had confronted during his journeys to the two poles and the importance of tackling environmental issues. He stated that he believes the world is on a 'voyage of survival' and suggested that actions, rather than endless planning for sustainable development, should be taken as soon as possible.

Two plenary sessions around sustainable city and business transformation were then held during the forum, hosted by Christina Lee, Managing Director, Global Green Economic Consulting and Secretary General for Global Green Economic Forum, and Dr. Li Mingxing, Executive Director General, China Enterprise Confederation respectively.

Senior executives from Accenture, Visionedge Technologies, Veolia Water China, The Climate Group, and the World Trade Center Dandong joined the first plenary, sharing their opinions on the theme 'Eco-city and Smart Business'. The panel mentioned that the business transformation towards 'green growth' was crucial for the blending of economic and ecological development, which requires consideration not only from the enterprises, but also from the regulators and policy makers.

The speakers also highlighted that besides the political structure and market environment, citizens’ awareness of environmental protection should also be further improved. With regards to the integration of policies, business models and social culture, it was agreed that better cooperation among government, enterprises and the public would effectively promote the development of sustainable cities.

The second plenary was led by senior executives from Datang Telecom Technology, Amer International Group, Ruder Finn Asia, AFT Corporation and UTC Group to discuss 'Green Economy and Business Transformation'. Successful case studies of enterprises that have transformed from traditional business sectors into the new ones were shared, while the impact of public perception of green and sustainable living was again emphasized. Innovation and ‘green’ strategies were spotlighted, as well as the importance of having unique intellectual properties, in order to enable enterprises to maintain competitiveness in the market.

Another highlight of the event was the formation of The CEC International Cooperation Advisory Board. The advisory board was inaugurated prior to this year’s forum, serving as the top advisory body for CEC’s international cooperation, as well as to promote international business exchange and trade development. The board is made up of 20 members who are decision makers from business, academic and governmental departments.

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