Norway-Asia Business Summit 2014, the next big event on the Chamber agenda
Started in 2003 and organised by the Norwegian Business Association Singapore in co-operation with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Norway Asia Business Summit has evolved into a meeting place for Norwegian industry in the region, the support apparatus of the Norwegian government and the diplomatic missions in the region. As such it truly represents the recently revitalised “Team Norway” concept. Started in 2003 and organised by the Norwegian Business Association Singapore in co- operation with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Norway Asia Business Summit has evolved into a meeting place for Norwegian industry in the region, the support apparatus of the Norwegian government and the diplomatic missions in the region. As such it truly represents the recently revitalised “Team Norway” concept. Other economies in the world are facing challenges while the centre of economic growth in the world is in a continuous shift in an easterly direction. Asia is and will continue to be one of the most important future export markets for Norway and Norwegian industry. Since 2010, the Norway-Asia Business Summit has become an annual event. The two first summits were held in Shanghai (2010) and Singapore (2011) reflecting the two largest Norwegian business communities in the region. Last year’s event in Indonesia focused on one of Asia most vibrant economies with the highest potential, but also challenges, for Norwegian industry. The 2014 summit will take place in Bangkok from 25 to 27 April 2014 with an optional extension to Myanmar 27 to 29 April 2014. Chamber President Vibeke Leirvåg Conselvan reveals that the Chamber is currently in negotiations with the two best riverside hotels in Bangkok as well as hotels in Yangon concerning the conference. She states that “the aim is to create a top-notch summit focusing on opportunities for Norwegian companies in the region when ASEAN Economic Community becomes a reality in 2015 with special emphasis on Myanmar. We will also look at Asia in 2050 and how Norway can play a role in such a scenario. In addition the summit will focus on Norwegian Industry’s competiveness in
the region.” The aim is to bring interesting business leaders as well as political leaders from Norway in addition to local business leaders to speak and inspire the audience. It is expected that the new Minister of Trade and Industry from Norway will participate in the event. Speakers at the summit may be industry leaders and decision makers who inspire the audience through their experience and knowhow. Other speakers hail from academic institutions and help the participants understand global trends and the effects of these. Some speakers represent regional organisations in Asia or host country governments. Finally some speakers are government representatives from Norway who are keen to reach out to Asia and who help update the audience on the latest developments back in Norway. In addition, several highly profiled business leaders are considering the invitation to speak at next year’s summit; among them, Mr. Jørgen Ole Haslestad CEO of Yara International, Ms. Kristin Skogen Lund, CEO of The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO); Ms. Gunn Ovesen, CEO of Innovation Norway; Professor Torger Reve from Norwegian Business School BI; Dr. Surin Pitsuwan, former Secretary General of ASEAN; Mr. Bjørn Kjos, CEO of Norwegian Air Shuttle, Europe’s third largest low cost airline, to mention a few. Vibeke says “It’s still early days and the programme will be firmed up in the coming months and posted at the newly created website www.norway-asia.com which is expected up and running in October.” A mix between interactive workshops for the participants and business presentations is envisioned. Content distribution for the Bangkok programme is envisioned as follows:
“The aim is to create a top-notch summit focusing on opportunities for Norwegian companies in the region when ASEAN Economic Community becomes a reality in 2015 with special emphasis on Myanmar.”
A spouse programme is also in the works, both in Bangkok and in Yangon. The target audience are mainly Norwegian-related businesses in Asia and their leaders and Norwegian government representatives looking to how Asia can influence Norwegian industry in a positive direction and how they can assist Norwegian industry abroad become more competitive in a global economy. In addition Asian government representatives as stakeholders to Norwegian industry forms an important part of the audience. Leaders within Norwegian business support organisations, ambassadors and diplomatic staff from the region are also an important key to a successful event. Finally Norwegian academic institutions with a keen interest in Asia and who can deliver future business leaders to Norwegian industry as well as Norwegian business related media are also targeted It is envisioned that the summit shall inspire and strengthen Norwegian industry in the region through sharing ideas and experiences. In addition the summit shall help build networks, both in Norway and throughout the region. The summit shall also be a forum to showcase how Norwegian companies contribute to innovation, capacity building and sustainability. Finally, it is desirable that the summit delivers key recommendations on development and actions needed to make Norwegian industry more competitive in Asia. “For now, please block the dates 25-29 April 2014 in your calendars. We are confident that the 2014 summit will be top-notch with interesting subjects and speakers in addition to networking opportunities with the leaders and shakers of Norwegian industry, both in Norway and in the region.” Vibeke says with a big smile on her lips.