Build­ing NABS

Nor­way Asia Busi­ness Sum­mit 2019 Co-Chairs Ms Dilek Ay­han and Mr Dan Bjørke had their work cut out for them when it came to or­gan­is­ing the event.

Norway-Asia Business Review - - F OREWORD - CHEYENNE HOLLIS

range of peo­ple with high-level del­e­gates and lead­ers in busi­ness, academia, diplo­macy and pol­i­tics all choos­ing to take part.

“We had the hon­our of wel­com­ing busi­ness and in­dus­try lead­ers; govern­ment rep­re­sen­ta­tives; tech­nol­ogy innovators; busi­ness sup­port or­gan­i­sa­tions; ex­perts and academia; in­ter­na­tional or­gan­i­sa­tions; and me­dia,” they stated. “By invit­ing busi­nesses and or­gan­i­sa­tions with deep in­dus­try ex­pe­ri­ence and knowl­edge to join us as co-hosts of the Sum­mit, we pro­vided all del­e­gates with valu­able en­coun­ters and rel­e­vant dis­cus­sions.”

There were 21 ses­sions and sem­i­nars dur­ing NABS 2019 along with many other meet­ings and talks as well as the open­ing re­cep­tion. H.E. Tor­b­jørn Røe Isak­sen, Nor­we­gian Min­is­ter of Trade and In­dus­try, Mr Ma Jun, Chair­man of Green Fi­nance Com­mit­tee (GFC) of China So­ci­ety of Fi­nance and Bank­ing, and Madame Li Yalan, Chair­per­son of Bei­jing Gas Group, were just a few of the many mem­o­rable speak­ers.

Em­brac­ing the topic

NABS 2019 cen­tred around the theme of OceanTech. In their open­ing re­marks, Ms Ay­han and Mr Bjørke noted that mar­itime, en­ergy and other ocean­based in­dus­tries will be vi­tal in meet­ing many of to­day’s global chal­lenges. And with the oceans al­ready un­der sig­nif­i­cant pres­sure as a re­sult of cli­mate change, over­fish­ing, and pol­lu­tion, de­vel­op­ing sus­tain­able so­lu­tions will be necessary.

“(NABS 2019) is to pro­vide a meet­ing arena for de­ci­sion mak­ers to de­liver a sus­tain­able ocean econ­omy.

Main­tain­ing a clean ocean en­vi­ron­ment is a pre-con­di­tion for busi­ness. This event can strengthen trade be­tween Nor­way and Asia and we ap­pre­ci­ate the sup­port we re­ceived from China,” Mr Morten Sten Jo­hansen, Chair­man, Nor­we­gian Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion China, de­clared dur­ing his speech at the Sum­mit.

China and Nor­way are in a unique position when it comes to OceanTech and this, in part, made Shang­hai the per­fect host for NABS 2019. The knowl­edge and in­for­ma­tion ex­changed and part­ner­ships formed dur­ing the event could have a ma­jor im­pact mov­ing for­ward.

“China’s ef­forts to cut emis­sions, its big mar­ket, in­dus­trial value chain and man­u­fac­tur­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties com­bined with Nor­way’s tech­nol­ogy position in the global mar­itime in­dus­try could pave the way for fruitful co­op­er­a­tion and joint de­vel­op­ment to trans­form the mar­itime sec­tor to a zero–emis­sion fu­ture,” the CoChairs ex­plained.

Mr Vi­dar Helge­sen, Nor­we­gian Spe­cial En­voy for Ocean, ex­plained the po­ten­tial of the ocean and just how OceanTech could help bring in­dus­tries and coun­tries closer to­gether.

“We know that the ocean holds a lot of ben­e­fits when it comes to re­new­able en­ergy, fish­ing and a host of other sec­tors. What we need to do is max­imise these ben­e­fits. It is pos­si­ble to com­bat cli­mate change if we fol­low best prac­tices us­ing ocean-cen­tric so­lu­tions. In­dus­tries across a wide va­ri­ety of eco­nomic sec­tors can con­trib­ute to this as long as they col­lab­o­rate and work to­gether,” Mr Helge­sen told the au­di­ence at NABS 2019. “Offshore wind farms can be com­bined with co­ral reef cre­ation where fish­ing zones can be in­cu­bated. These sep­a­rate fields can be in­ter­con­nected. Nor­way and China can use our ex­per­tise in the in­di­vid­ual fields and bring them to­gether.”

The Co-Chairs are not only happy with how the event turned out, but also be­lieve the im­pact of NABS 2019 could be sig­nif­i­cant if ev­ery­one works to­gether.

“The key take­away for the con­fer­ence at­ten­dees was that in­no­va­tion and the dif­fu­sion of new technologi­es are in­dis­pens­able for sus­tain­able eco­nomic growth. The busi­ness sec­tor; re­search and ed­u­ca­tion; em­ploy­ees; and au­thor­i­ties have to join forces to de­liver tan­gi­ble re­sults,” Ms Ay­han and Mr Bjørke said.

The big pic­ture

Pro­vid­ing con­text for all this in­for­ma­tion was also im­por­tant for at­ten­dees. The or­gan­is­ers en­sured there were other con­nected top­ics be­ing dis­cussed, such as the US-China trade war and the coun­try’s role in the global econ­omy. Ms Mary Boyd, Di­rec­tor and The Econ­o­mist Cor­po­rate Net­work in Shang­hai of­fered in­sights on these is­sues dur­ing the Sum­mit.

An­other key topic was the im­por­tance of women’s lead­er­ship dur­ing the digital age. A spe­cial sem­i­nar hosted by BI Nor­we­gian Busi­ness School pro­vided Asian and Nor­we­gian fe­male lead­ers a plat­form to share their own sto­ries and of­fer ideas on what more needs to be done.

An­other thing the NABS or­gan­is­ers needed to do was en­sure guests could take part in dif­fer­ent ex­pe­ri­ences, in­clud­ing food and en­ter­tain­ment, they wouldn’t be able to en­joy oth­er­wise. The 2019 Sum­mit had several Chi­nese mu­sic and cul­tural per­for­mances through­out the event while Nor­we­gian pop-band Marcus & Mart­i­nus per­formed as well. All of these added a dif­fer­ent el­e­ment to NABS 2019 and pro­vided at­ten­dees with a glimpse beyond busi­ness.



Above left: Co-Chairs Ms Dilek Ay­han and Mr Dan Bjørke speak to the crowd at NABS 2019. It took 18 months to plan the event. Above: The NABS 2019 Co-Chairs to­gether with Jo­tun CEO Morten Fon and Nor­we­gian Deputy Min­is­ter of Petroleum and En­ergy, Mr Rikard Gaarder Knut­sen.

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