Brunei firm gets key role for Hawaii

Posted on  13/11/2010  |  Media Centre

Saturday, November 13, 2010 – Page A08

Ubaidillah Masli

BRUNEI-based Asia Inc Forum has again been appointed as the strategic partner for another Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) CEO summit, its director told The Brunei Times yesterday.

This time, the conference coordinator will provide the marketing services to highlight next year’s meeting of regional and global business leaders when they meet in Hawaii for Apec USA 2011. Asia Inc Forum has been the strategic partner for the annual Apec CEO summits for almost every year since Brunei hosted the Apec meet in 2000.

“Our role is to market the CEO Summit next year to companies and delegates interested in taking part. We have been the strategic partner to the Apec CEO summits in Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, Chile, Thailand (and Korea),” said Allen Lai at the sidelines of the Apec CEO Summit 2010 being held here.

“For the past Apec CEO summits, we’ve been involved as the strategic partner to assist the organising committee in putting the CEO summits together,” he said, adding it involved varied scope of work.

For 2011, the current role that Asia Inc Forum has is to assist the host committee (the US) in garnering the interest of international partners and delegates in respectively sponsoring and attending the event, Lai explained.

“So the role is to talk to companies like DHL, and other non-US-based companies, to see whether they want to come on board and sponsor the summit next year,” he said.

“We also work on sharing our advice in the way the CEO summit is run because we’ve been the strategic partner to (the CEO summit) in Singapore last year. Our role there was to get the partners on board, to help develop the plan for the Apec CEO Summit and work with them in executing the entire event as well,” he added.

The Asia Inc Forum director pointed out that they would have a similar role with the US organising committee next year.

“The Apec CEO summit is something very important for Asia inc Forum (Asia-Pacific), something that we’ve been involved in since Brunei hosted (Apec) in 2000,” Lai said.

“We feel that it is great testimony that a small Brunei company can be appointed for such an important event. It shows that Brunei can do business (both within and) outside Brunei also,” he said adding that such participation emphasised that Brunei is “a key part of Apec”.

He also believed that the appointment would further improve Asia Inc Forum’s presence in the region and open up more opportunities for the Bruneian company.

“We work with very big companies at the Apec level and from that, they often would like to continue working with us within Southeast Asia and within Brunei,” Lai said, adding that Asia Inc Forum developed “multi-level” relationships with such entities as HSBC.

Asia Inc Forum’s involvement in the yearly summit conferences also contributed to increasing its know-how on holding forums back in Brunei.

“Being involved in the Apec discussions certainly gives us a lot of insight into the discussions being held at Apec that we can take home to Brunei. We do find a lot of the challenges that other economies have, Brunei also has,” he said.

“For Asia Inc Forum, we often learn things at Apec and then we take the discussions to the forums that we have in Brunei. That’s one of the learning curves that we are having and that’s another way which delegates will benefit.”

Lai said that he will be attending the Apec CEO summit as it carries on today, under the theme, “Asia-Pacific as the Driving Force for Global Growth – Seeking Prosperity After Crisis”, at the Yokohama Royal Park Hotel.

The Brunei Times

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