Asia-Pacific Business Forum Urges Regulation of Technologies, Financing Models
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The Asia-Pacific Business Forum in Hong Kong highlighted the need for massive investment to achieve the SDGs, and the potential for emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence to produce social and economic benefits.

ESCAP and Cyberport, a technology community managed by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, jointly organized the two-day meeting on the role of business in sustainable development.

12 April 2018: The Asia-Pacific Business Forum (APBF) highlighted the need for massive investment to achieve the SDGs, and the potential for emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) to produce social and economic benefits. Participants noted, however, that appropriate regulation should be put in place to ensure, for example, adequate cybersecurity and equitable access to infrastructure.

The UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and Cyberport, a technology community managed by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR), jointly organized the two-day meeting on the role of business in sustainable development. It convened in Cyberport, Hong Kong from 10-11 April 2018. Issues discussed at the APBF included ‘green financing,’ impact investment, smart energy solutions, digital technologies for banking and financial services (FinTech), and risk management systems for disaster risk reduction (DRR).

Paul Chan Mo-po, Financial Secretary of the Hong Kong SAR, announced Hong Kong’s plans to support research into health care technology, and in AI and robotics. George Lee, Chairman of the Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company and incoming President of the ESCAP Sustainable Business Network Executive Council, welcomed support from the business community for improving access to finance and technology, both of which he said are important means of implementing the SDGs.

The APBF meets annually. Outcomes of the 2018 APBF will feed into discussions at the 74th Commission session of ESCAP in Bangkok, Thailand, taking place from 11-16 May 2018. The next APBF will convene in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, in 2019. [ESCAP Press Release] [APBF Webpage]

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