A fruitful day for Shanghai Mayor and his IBLAC friends

Members of the International Business Leaders’ Advisory Council put forward valuable advice and suggestions as Shanghai sets a goal to become a global city of excellence.

Members of the International Business Leaders’ Advisory Council for the Mayor of Shanghai put forward valuable advice and suggestions as Shanghai paves its way towards a global city of excellence.

Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong said the meeting is of strategic importance to Shanghai as the city is building itself into an international center of economy, finance, trade and shipping.

“Shanghai will become a metropolis with positive energy and great vitality," said Ying. “We will strive to keep the lead in China’s economic development and become an innovative, humanistic and eco-friendly city.”

Mark Weinberger, chairman and CEO of EY and chairman of the International Business Leaders Advisory Council, commented that “Technology is helping cities address the challenges coming with fast changes through becoming 'smarter'.”

“Maintaining a city’s success over the long term is also about creating an inclusive urban society, where everyone can flourish — through work and leisure,” he told the plenary session on Sunday morning. 

Members of the council put forward their advice regarding innovation and entrepreneurship, financial service, elderly population and a wide range of topics that could make Shanghai more friendly for business and residents alike.

“To harness Shanghai’s great potential, policymakers should envisage strengthening framework conditions that allow investors to take a more long-term perspective,” said Joerg Reinhardt, chairman of Novartis.

Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong makes a speech during the IBLAC meeting.

Mark Tucker, group chairman designate of HSBC Holdings Plc, called for Shanghai’s further collaboration with other international centers, which could “strengthen Shanghai‘s position within the global financial system, as well as increasing the role for Chinese regulators as ‘rule-makers’ rather than ‘rule-takers’.”

“Advancing early-stage R&D, fostering talent, and cultivating a culture of innovation are the three key actions that Shanghai can take to reinforce its position and increase its potential to become a leading innovation hub in the world,” Severin Schwan, CEO of the Roche Group.

WPP Chairman Sir Martin Sorrell suggested the city to make further investment in developing the brand image of itself within China as well as around the world and for people to understand its achievements.

Shanghai is rich in its modern adaptation of Chinese culture, he said, “which is reflected in cultural and art activities and can be fully leveraged to build a perception of traditional and contemporary Shanghai.”

Mary Barra, chairman and CEO of General Motors Company, also suggested the adoption of an intelligent connected transportation management system for Shanghai could help reduce the number of vehicles as well as parking space.

“There’s tremendous opportunities for Shanghai to take the lead in improving transportation efficiency and reducing emissions,” she noted.

Emmanuel Faber, CEO of Danone, called for the city to focus on prevention of early age-related illness, and that “the core of prevention is about everyday food and lifestyles.”

He also believes Shanghai should take the lead in “sharing data with stakeholder and private sectors to bring consumer data about the lifestyles of their citizens” to raise awareness of the health, optimizing social and economic benefits of good nutrition.

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