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Bo'ao Forum: Focus on Innovation and Sustainable Development
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Preparation work is going well ahead of the Bo'ao Forum for Asia (BFA) Annual Conference 2007, which will go on from April 20th to 22nd in the scenic town of Bo'ao, Hainan Province. China's top legislator Wu Bangguo has confirmed his attendance in a stance sure to cement the Chinese government's support to the BFA. Titled "Asia Winning in Global Economy -- Innovation and Sustainable Development", this year's conference will have a far-reaching agenda ranging from sustainable social and economic development in Asia to the impact of growth and innovation on specific industries not omitting corporate social responsibility, said Long Yongtu, secretary-general of the BFA today at a press conference held by the State Council Information Office in Beijing.

Following BFA's banner motto "Asia Searching for Win-Win", this year's conference will happen under the aegis of "Asia Winning in Global Economy -- Innovation and Sustainable Development". The specifics of this will see delegates engage in topics as varied as Asian economic integration, symbiotic relations among China, India and the rest of Asia; the impact of growth and innovation on energy/resources, IT, banking and creative industries.

The array of speakers will gather notables from many walks of life including Gloria Arroyo, president of the Philippines, Shaukat Aziz, prime minister of Pakistan, Bill Gates, chairman of Microsoft and Nobel Prize Laureate Muhammad Yunus. These few, along with other luminaries, will discuss the emerging opportunities and accompanying challenges facing Asia now and in the future.

"This year's conference has enjoyed unprecedented support from the business community at home and abroad as well," said Long. Sponsors for this year's include several impressive brands such as Microsoft, SK Group, Merrill Lynch, Dongfeng Nissan, Sinopec right through to Moutai and Deloitte. In addition, Lenovo, UPS, New Fortune and Starbucks have also registered their support. "Such strong support from multinationals shows that Bo'ao's influence has expanded beyond Asia," said Long.

He went on saying: "This year's lineup is the most exciting yet for the BFA. I'm thrilled that we can bring together so many truly outstanding thinkers at a time when we really need some fresh, innovative perspectives."

Now in its sixth year, the BFA has become a regional trend-setting, shaping the debate on Asia's future, by bringing together over one thousand influential figureheads during its entire run. 

According to Long, this year will stand out for the extent of cooperation enjoyed with international media agencies. Close collaboration with Bloomberg, Financial Times and BBC, will ensure the forum's reach overseas with a number of senior correspondents and editors providing on-site coverage. Overseas press outlets including AP, APTN, Business Week, Washington Post, Dow Jones Newswires, Economist, NHK and others will send journalists to cover the conference with proceedings also being broadcast live on the BFA website.

"In order to make the journalists' work easier in Bo'ao, we will organize as many interviews of panelists, speakers and VIP guests as possible. Journalists can expect much better working conditions and accommodation," promised Long.

Long also announced the start of an initiative entitled "The Power of Media and a Harmonious Asia". This will provide media leaders with a platform to discuss regional changes in terms of media integration and the steps to take to move towards a harmonious Asia.

( by staff reporter Wang Qian, April 6, 2007)

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