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1,700-odd gather for Boao Forum
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More than 1,700 influential politicians, business leaders, intellectuals and journalists from around the globe were currently in China's southern Hainan Province for the 2008 Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) annual conference. It runs from April 11 to 13.

The number of participants for this year's conference was unprecedented, said Long Yongtu, the forum's secretary-general, at a press conference held in Boao on Friday afternoon.

The participants included about 250 government officials, 750 entrepreneurs, 680 journalists and 50 experts and scholars.

Under the theme of "Green Asia: moving towards win-win through changes", participants are discussing public-private partnerships in green energy sector, financial reform, as well as the shift from Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to Socially Responsible Investing (SRI).

The forum would also feature talks on climate change, the future of the Internet and the intensity of competition in the global marketplace.

"Asia has an increasingly important voice in the global dialogue,"Long said. "As such, it is more important than ever that Asian thought leaders and pacesetters from around the world sit down together to exchange ideas on issues that affect Asia most right now."

He said, to build a "Green Asia", countries of Asia should seek more innovative solutions to promote sustainable development.

Chinese President Hu Jintao will deliver a keynote speech at the official opening ceremony of the conference on Saturday. He will be joined by the state and government leaders of 10 other nations.

(Xinhua News Agency April 12, 2008)

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