The World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2010 (“Summer Davos” in Asia) took place in Tianjin on 13-15 September. The Annual Meeting of the New Champions, the “Summer Davos”, is the foremost global business gathering in Asia. Introduced in 2007, the Meeting is hosted in partnership with the Government of the People’s Republic of China represented by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). Over 1,300 participants from 85 countries took part.
The Annual Meeting of the New Champions provides a platform for the rising generation of global leaders from business and society to contribute to broader policy discussions and engage with the world’s top business executives. The New Champions are led by the Forum’s growing Community of Global Growth Companies as well as the Communities of Technology Pioneers, Young Global Leaders and Young Scientists.
This year’s Annual Meeting of the New Champions is designed to prepare leaders from business and government for this new growth context under the theme “Driving Growth through Sustainability”, which was explored in the program under four main pillars: Improving Competitiveness through Science and Technology; Creating New Value from Business Models and for Future Markets; Facilitating Economic and Social Change; and Designing Effective Global, Industry and Regional Solutions.
“The Annual Meeting of the New Champions will highlight how the sustainability imperative is transforming companies and reshaping industries,” said Jeremy Jurgens, Senior Director at the World Economic Forum and Head of the Annual Meeting of the New Champions and Community of Global Growth Companies. “The Global Growth Companies at this year’s Summer Davos are at the forefront of demonstrating how entrepreneurship, innovation and technology can create new growth opportunities.”
Ren Xuefeng, Vice-Mayor of Tianjin, People’s Republic of China, said, “The Government of Tianjin and its citizens are proud to support the Annual Meeting of the New Champions with our world-class facilities and services. We wish to provide the best environment possible for all the participants to feel welcome and engage productively in this important global gathering.”
A select group of business leaders from the World Economic Forum’s Member companies who have extensive international experience in building global businesses acted as Mentors at the Meeting. They are: Hari S. Bhartia, Co-Chairman and Managing Director, Jubilant Bhartia Group, India; President, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII); Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, Chairman of the Board, Nestlé, Switzerland; Member of the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum; Cynthia Carroll, Chief Executive, Anglo American, United Kingdom; Eckhard Cordes, Chairman of the Management Board and Chief Executive Officer, METRO GROUP, Germany; Kris Gopalakrishnan, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Infosys Technologies, India; Jack Ma Yun, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Alibaba Group, People’s Republic of China; James E. Rogers, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Duke Energy Corporation, USA; John S. Watson, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, Chevron Corporation, USA; and Wei Jiafu, Group President and Chief Executive Officer, China Ocean Shipping Group Co., People’s Republic of China.
Other leading Chinese political leaders taking part in the Meeting include Wan Gang, Minister of Science and Technology; Zhang Ping, Chairman, National Development and Reform Commission; Zhang XiaoQiang, Vice-Chairman, National Development and Reform Commission; Yang Jiechi, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Cui Tiankai, Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs; Wu Hailong, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs; Wang Chen, Minister, State Council Information Office; Li Jingtian, Senior Vice-President, Central Party School of the Communist Party of China; Dai Xianglong, Chairman, National Council for Social Security Fund; Ma Jiantang, Commissioner, National Bureau of Statistics of China; Cheng Siwei, Chairman, International Finance Forum (IFF); Zhang Gaoli, Party Secretary, CPC Tianjin Municipal Committee; Huang Xingguo, Mayor of Tianjin; Zhao Yong, Deputy Governor of Hebei; Xia Deren, Party Secretary, Dalian CPC Municipal Committee; Li Wancai, Mayor of Dalian; Xu Qin, Mayor of Shenzhen; Ai Wenli, Mayor of Shijiazhuang; Wang Bo, Mayor of Huhhot; Jierla Yishamuding, Mayor of Urumqi; Zhang Bingsheng, Mayor of Taiyuan; Dai Yulin, Party Secretary of Dandong; Wen Zhenfu, Vice-Mayor of Wuhan; Fan Li, Vice-Mayor of Nanning; Yu Hongyi, Vice-Mayor of Ningbo; and Yu Shan, Vice-Mayor of Tangshan.
In an address at the Opening Plenary of the “Summer Davos”, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said that, while China would maintain its rapid economic expansion and continue efforts to stimulate domestic demand, it is committed to balancing growth with sustainability. “China’s economic growth has provided major development opportunities for multinationals and created huge demand for major economies and neighboring countries,” Wen noted. “It has become an important engine for the world economic recovery.” China, he pledged, “will continue to conserve resources and protect the environment and raise the efficiency of resource utilization and the capacity to tackle climate change.”
In his address, Premier Wen assured investors that his country would treat foreign-invested enterprises fairly. “I wish to reiterate that all enterprises registered in China according to Chinese laws are Chinese enterprises and their products are made-in-China products,” he said. Foreign-invested enterprises registered in China would receive “national treatment”, he stressed. “In government procurement, China gives equal treatment to products from foreign-invested enterprises and Chinese-invested enterprises alike.” Wen also underscored that “China gives high priority to intellectual property protection and has made this a national strategy.”
Reacting to Wen’s speech, Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, told participants, “China will continue on a fast-growth path but, at the same time, pursue policies that are socially inclusive and also address the question of resource efficiency.” A growing China is very important to maintaining the necessary confidence level in the world economy, Schwab remarked.