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Asia-Pacific Business Forum 2018: Regional governors and thought leaders gathered to advance digital transformation

First held in Hong Kong, Asia-Pacific Business Forum (APBF) 2018 which ran from 10 to 11 April, 2018 at Cyberport, was successfully concluded today. Jointly organised by Cyberport and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), APBF aimed at identifying how business engagement in achieving inclusive and sustainable development in the Asia-Pacific region can be strengthened. With the support from the Innovation and Technology Bureau of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, APBF gathered key industry leaders across the Asia-Pacific region to exchange insights along the theme “Harnessing Business to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals through Technology, Innovation and Financing”. The Forum focused on exploring how private sector-led innovation, technology and financing can promote sustainable growth across the region. 

The two-day agenda was brimming with insights from respected government, academic and business leaders alike, including Mr. Mahbubur RAHMAN, President, Executive Council of ESCAP Sustainable Business Network, and President of ESCAP Sustainable Business Network Executive, Dr. Shamshad AKHTAR, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of ESCAP, and Mr. Paul CHAN Mo-po, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR. Key executives from enterprises like KPMG, Microsoft, HSBC and more were also present to give the private sector’s perspective on areas such as nurturing the startup ecosystem in Asia, smart energy applications, and the impact of artificial intelligence in the workforce.

“We have a lot of remarkable industry leaders attending this year’s APBF. The strong understanding of technology, innovation, sustainability, and working relationship between the government and the private sector bodes well for the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Goals and the continued prospering of the Asia-Pacific region,” said Mr. Mahbubur RAHMAN, President, Executive Council of ESCAP Sustainable Business Network.

A cornerstone of the event was the insight of how regional trade development, various digital innovations, big data hub facilitation, and redefinition of supply chain have been propelling the future of the “Digital Silk Road” initiative. As one of the leading digital technology hubs in Asia, Cyberport has been spearheading digital transformation in Hong Kong, offering full-range incubation support and value-added services to promote collaborations amongst enterprises, nurture talents for the industry and foster digital transformation that creates new impetus in this new economy era.

“Although Asia-Pacific spans across a myriad of cultures and countries, today’s digital technologies transcend its geographical boundaries to make what once seemed impossible to reality. Cyberport will continue to foster digital transformation among Hong Kong companies, leveraging digital technology and the “Digital Silk Road” initiative to bring innovation and sustainable development to these countries,” said Dr. Lee George LAM, Chairman of Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company and Vice Chairman of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) Business Advisory Council.

Dr. Lam was also thankful for the great support from event partners such as BOA Financial Group, Chong Sing Holdings FinTech Group Limited, ICBC, EY, Eurasia Continental Fintech and many more, whose contribution was indispensable to the success of the Forum.

Following the success of APBF is the Internet Economy Summit 2018 which will be held from 12 to 13 April at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre. Co-organized by the HKSAR Government and Cyberport, the Summit will further translate insights from APBF into business opportunities and industry applications. The Summit, centres on digital economy under the theme “New Impetus for the New Economy”, will bring together multinational technology corporations, internet giants, business leaders, and technology startups to share industry trends, strategies and best practice, grasping opportunities brought by the new economy.

More event photos of the forum can be downloaded at:
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1HWmjntXuXG5EpPp1Oi9dUvXhTC8MpFHj