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Ruder Finn Asia Forum: “Embracing One Belt and One Road: Opportunities and Challenges for Global Companies in China”

2014-10-14

Beijing. Ruder Finn Asia successfully organized an interactive Forum, “Embracing One Belt and One Road: Opportunities and Challenges for Global Companies in China,” in Beijing, today.

The One Belt and One Road (OBOR) Initiative is a development strategy and framework, proposed by People's Republic of China in 2013, that focuses on connectivity and cooperation among countries. OBOR consists of two main components, the “Silk Road Economic Belt" and the "Maritime Silk Road". In March 2015, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Commerce and the National Development and Reform Commission jointly issued the “Vision and Actions on Jointly Building Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road”.

Organized by Ruder Finn Asia’s Public Affairs team, the Forum aimed to engage both policy experts and global companies to explore and discuss the significant and unique opportunities presented by OBOR. Many global companies view the OBOR initiative as a major opportunity to develop regional trade, investment and infrastructure development.  The forum saw participation of high level policy experts from China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), a leading think tank and representatives from global companies’ public affairs and communications divisions. MNCs  companies which attended included 3M, ABB, Alstom, BG Group, Cummins, DHL, GE, Marsh, MTR, United Technologies (UTC) and UPM. Mr Roger Chen, Volvo Group China President and Mr Yi Min, MTR China CEO, participated in the discussion panel.

Policy experts led the discussion on government policies and practices that affect global companies’ businesses in the region, with a clear focus on the geopolitical risks faced by  a majority of business entities seeking opportunities in the OBOR regions. Best practices on cross-functional coordination, innovative relationships with contractors, flexible business and financial models to adapt as per project needs, were also discussed and shared. Panelists and participants agreed that transparency, inclusion and risk sharing are the fundamental elements to design policies that could motivate all parties to work jointly towards the success of OBOR.

The forum helped in facilitating greater insights on the policy and business aspects of OBOR.  The Forum was well received and Ruder Finn has been requested to organize more of such discussions, in the future.