Global Entrepreneurship Summit in KL draws strong response

KUALA LUMPUR: Close to 4,000 participants – the biggest in the history of Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) – will attend the two-day 4th GES which starts here tomorrow.

Finance Ministry secretary-general Tan Sri Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah said this was the first time the summit was being held in East Asia. “Although US President Barack Obama has not been able to grace the event himself, we are proud of this overwhelming response so far.

“We will see the participants from over 100 countries. The speakers include deputy prime ministers from various countries, trade representatives and also prominent business leaders of the world including Malaysia,” he told a media conference here yesterday.

The first GES was held in Washington in 2010, followed by Istanbul in 2011 and Dubai in 2012.

The 4th GES in Kuala Lumpur with the theme “Empowering and Connecting Entrepreneurs” is organised by the Finance Ministry under the patronage of Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak.

The event is also assisted by Multimedia Development Corporation (MDec) and Small and Medium Entreprises Corporation ( SME Corp) with input from the White House and various entrepreneurial organisations.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak will make the opening address followed by a speech by a representative of the US government.

The GES is a follow through on Obama’s emphasis on entrepreneurship as one of the most powerful ways for individuals to improve their own economic circumstances.

Irwan pointed out that the highlights of the event include more than 100 top-draw speakers from across the globe who would talk on cutting-edge topics on entrepreneurship.

“The four distinct tracks are building an entrepreneurial eco-system, creating tomorrow’s game-changers, emerging trends and connecting for growth.

“Some of the prominent speakers are Blue Ocean Strategy author Professor Chan Kim, US secretary of state John Kerry, founder Mark Chang, and Tune Group of companies founder Tan Sri Tony Fernandes.

“There are some interesting side events as well such as the Global Startup Youth and Global Innovation through Science & Technology (GIST) initiative,” he said.

The US ambassador to Malaysia Joseph Y. Yun said from a US perspective, Malaysia was an amazing host of the 4th GES due to its dynamic economy.

“Our US secretary of state John Kerry is coming tomorrow (today) to view the preparation for the summit. He will also talk to about 1,000 young entrepreneurs during the summit,” he said.

Meanwhile, MDeC chief executive officer Datuk Badlisham Ghazali said there would be a good mix of 29 Malaysian speakers at the summit. “For me, I just want to highlight the roundtable discussion on global entrepreneurship policy that will touch on the issues of education, funding, youth, regulatory framework and policies,” he said.

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