The Asia Regional Consultation of the ICC G20 CEO Advisory Group took place in Hong Kong on September 22 and 23, 2011. The meeting brought together over 25 business leaders and policy experts from around the Asia Pacific region and France for a candid discussion on the current global economic situation.
Hong Kong meeting was the second in a series of four consultations designed to
gather input from local business leaders – ensuring that our work is balanced,
substantive and representative of business views worldwide – and to transmit
our views to government officials and media. It is included in the work of
ICC’s G20 CEO Advisory Group, which is hosting a series of regional policy
consultations, designed to provide local businesses with an opportunity to help
shape ICC’s policy recommendations for input into the G20 process.
Stefano Bertasi, ICC
Policy Director, framed the discussion with a presentation on the ICC’s global
and inclusive policy development process, along with a distillation of the ICC
G20 CEO Advisory Group’s work in the areas of: trade, investment and development;
strengthening financial regulation, fighting corruption, reforming the
international monetary system, reducing commodity price volatility; and green
The meeting was
hosted by ICC’s Honorary Chairman, Victor K. Fung, who is also a leading member
of the ICC G20 CEO Advisory Group. The roundtable brought together CEOs of leading
companies from Bangladesh, India, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia and
France. Speakers included Mr Fung, ICC Secretary-General Jean-Guy Carrier and
Jean-Pascal Tricoire, CEO of Schneider Electric.
One major area of
concern expressed was the inability of global trade rules and frameworks to
keep up with the realities of how global companies actually trade and do
business. Rules of Origin, which form the basis for computing national trade
deficits and surpluses, are just one example. In some cases, outdated global
frameworks can work against market access, investment and innovation.
The Group also offered feedback on issues that would be addressed
by the G20 leaders in November 2011 in France.
- Noting that the number of protectionist measures had actually increased
over the last 18 months, the group suggested that ICC speak out strongly on the
harms of protectionism. They also suggested that such an ICC campaign should
also more effectively dispel arguments that trade results in job losses by
clearly explaining how trade is a dynamic process that contributes to job
- Participants expressed concern over the increasing
volatility of global economic conditions, and how this volatility affected all
players in all parts of the world due to the increasing integration of the
global economy. One of business’s objectives in influencing the G20 agenda and
in the outcomes of the G20 process should be to try to decrease this volatility
to more manageable levels.
- On investment, participants suggested
that a multilateral framework for cross-border investment should be proposed by
the G20. Multilateral rules for trade have proven to be effective in raising
living standards across the world. Now, more than ever, given global supply
chains and the complementary role of trade and investment, it is time to create
a global regime for investment that parallels the global regime for trade.
- Participants in the consultation welcomed ICC’s soon-to-be-released
“Open Markets Index,” suggesting that a business-led index of economic openness
would be an excellent complement to existing indicators developed by
- On the subject of corruption, the
group acknowledged that there is much that business could do to spread good
practice and improve corporate performance using ICC rules and associated
tools. Close cooperation between business and government to eradicate
corruption would yield faster progress while boosting investment prospects.
Victor K. Fung,
ICC Honorary Chairman and Chairman of the Li & Fung group companies, hosted
the media roundtable in Hong Kong. This media event presented the outcomes of
the discussion taken among members of the ICC G20 CEO Advisory Group as well as CEOs of
leading regional companies in Hong Kong.
The event had a
significant amount of coverage from media such as Bloomberg, Reuters, Xinhua,
the China Daily and the Hong Kong Economic Journal.
“Recent events have shown the
fragility of economic recovery and highlighted the need for forward-looking
measures to support trade, global economic cooperation and job creation. Our
focus on jobs is deliberate: every major economy is facing serious challenges
in this area, whether due to fiscal concerns, demographic change, or social
integration. Business has an important contribution to make to the global
recovery in terms of job creation. And a concerted 'jobs agenda' from global
leaders would in turn do much to boost confidence in the business
Victor K Fung, ICC Honorary
"More effective and ambitious
international cooperation is vital for tackling the world's major challenges in
today’s integrated global economy. Meetings such as this one help determine how
business can and should contribute to global policy discussions – on energy as
well as on other key issues for our societies.”
Tricoire President and CEO, Schneider Electric
play a key role in tackling the jobs crisis. Economic growth depends largely on
the capacity of G20 governments to improve the conditions for international
trade and job creation, and business stands ready as a partner in this
Jean-Guy Carrier, ICC