High Level Meeting: seeds of a shared future

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The “summit” between top public and private managers of ASEAN countries, Italy and the United Arab Emirates was successfully held at the Italian Pavilion of Expo Dubai 2020

On Thursday, December 9th, was held the High Level Meeting, “A Partnership for Success in Asia, the Gulf and Europe”, organized by the Italian Commissioner at Expo 2020 Dubai in collaboration with the Italy-ASEAN Association and the Chamber of Commerce of Dubai.

The “summit” was opened by the speech of Romano Prodi, President of the Italy-ASEAN Association and former President of the European Commission, and Lim Jock Hoi, Secretary General of ASEAN and has had the objective to define innovative models for the relaunch of economy after the health emergency through multilateral relations among countries that play a strategic role in the area of the world - from Mediterranean to Asia, passing through the Gulf - where in the next years will have the highest rates of economic, technological and financial growth, but also major issues related to climate change, energy transition and social sustainability. “Italy wants to deepen the already strong collaboration with ASEAN”, declared Prodi. “After the pandemic, sustainability is no longer just rhetoric but has become a strategic objective”, said the President of the Italy-ASEAN Association: “With environmental sustainability we are called to preserve social sustainability as well. The pandemic will not be the end of globalization, but a deep correction of it, and we need to be ready”.

Lim Jock Hoi highlighted the strength of the link between Italy and ASEAN, mentioning the circular economy sector, and underlined the trajectory of development of the region, that must “find a more sustainable way of production and consumption” based on a “safer and greener” development. Jamal Saif Al Jarwan, Secretary General of UAE International Investors Council, and Amedeo Scarpa, Director of the ICE Office of Dubai, also spoke. The event then developed with three parallel working groups dedicated to: technologies and finance for sustainability, renewable energies and sustainable agriculture.

At the end, the two Vice-Presidents of the Italy-ASEAN Association summed up the results. “This was a very productive meeting during which there were established bilateral and trilateral relations. With this event we have opened new useful links to develop follow up”, explained Ambassador Michelangelo Pipan. “The participation has been fantastic”, said Romeo Orlandi. “Everyone agrees that we need to move towards renewables, but how to do it? We tried to give some answers about wind, solar and other types of energy. Conclusions are promising and all the involved parts will stay in contact after this event”. President Prodi summed it up: “Competence, culture and heart. We are at the beginning of a fertilization process to develop ideas and proposals that were put on the table during this meeting”.

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