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Fortune Global Forum explores China's new future

China.org.cn  14:56, June 07, 2013  

Fortune Global Forum participants attended a welcome reception in Chengdu Thursday evening, where they heard a keynote address from Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli. Themed "China's New Future" and scheduled for June 6-8, the Chengdu forum convenes over 600 heavyweights from the political, business and academic world. Participants hope to develop long-term success strategies for Chinese and global companies alike as they explore sustainable development, innovation and technology, global finance and economic recovery and the "China century." (Source: China.org.cn)

BEIJING, June 7 (Xinhuanet) -- China's transformation of its economic growth pattern, the urbanization drive and the West China Development campaign are considered big business opportunities by savvy multinational executives around the world. In this light, Fortune magazine decided to take its global forum back to China this year.

The 2013 Fortune Global Forum -- a gathering of top corporate CEOs, government officials and academics -- kicked off on Thursday afternoon in Chengdu, a flourishing city in Southwest China's Sichuan Province, themed "China's New Future." More than 600 participants, the largest attendance in the forum's 12-year history, aim to gain some insight into the trends and forces that are redefining economic growth in China, the world's second largest economy, and in the whole world in general.

In his remarks at the forum's opening plenary session, Andy Serwer, managing editor of Fortune, said the forum will thoroughly examine the impact of events such as China's 12th Five-Year Plan, urbanization and China's "west-bound" move.

To illustrate the economic power of China's 1.3 billion consumers, Serwer cited the online sales figures on China's Singles' Day, which is considered the alternative to the U.S. Valentines' Day and falls on November 11 every year.

"In 2010, online sales on Singles Day added up to US$300 million(in China), but two years later -- in 2012 -- people went online and spent US$4 billion on that [very same] day," he said.

Serwer estimated the population of China's middle class, generated by the country's vibrant economic growth and major spending force, will reach 1 billion by 2030.

When identifying some of the challenges facing China's economy, Serwer said that the years from 2008 to 2011 were characterized by an imbalance between export and personal consumption, stressing that the balance of the economy based on the consumer side of the equation is crucial.

Expounding on the forum's theme of "China's New Future," Serwer thinks it is a future defined by a pro-consumption growth founded on three building blocks: The transition from a manufacturing and export model to a service economy, the urbanization and the development of a social security network.

"The service economy of course creates jobs, producing 30 percent more jobs per U.S. dollar in GDP than manufacturing. Yet China's service industry only contributes 43 percent to the GDP, compared to 80 percent in the U.S," Serwer pointed out, adding that a service economy is also resource-light and more sustainable.

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(Editor:ZhangQian、Yao Chun)