H.E. Mr. Denis Manturov, Minister of Industry and Trade, Russian Federation
H.E. Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development
Germany’s “Marshall Plan with Africa” initiative outlines a new dimension in development cooperation – away from the practice of recipient countries being “rule takers” and instead towards a cooperative model African ownership, partnership and responsibility. The goal is a prosperous Africa whose development is advanced by the tremendous potential for Africans to harness their own resources, knowledge and capacities. The average age in Africa is eighteen years old and, at the current rate of growth, 20 million new jobs will need to be created every single year. This is quite unique to the continent of Africa and therefore, there must be an effective strategy that is Africa-centric. Germany has been recognised as adopting this collaborative initiative with Africa in an effort to improve economic growth, based on mutual interests to help bolster entrepreneurship and innovation to ensure young people are provided jobs. Moreover, the initiative was established to provide the infrastructure required that would allow deeper economic partnership between the EU and Africa. In doing so, moving the least developed countries (LDCs) to Middle Income Countries (MICs) and respectively MICs to become developed. In Africa, the fourth industrial revolution (4IR)’s potential is limitless. Its technologies, like artificial intelligence (AI), 3D printing, advanced robotics and the internet of things (IoT), offer accelerated possibilities for economic growth, innovation, development and human well-being. It can solve a host of business, environmental and societal challenges, from providing better healthcare and basic services to creating more efficient governments and helping businesses become intelligent and more competitive enterprises that drive growth and prosperity. A useful framework for these efforts is the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa 2016- 2025 (IDDA III), adopted by the UN General Assembly and implemented by UNIDO, in conjunction with various partners in industrial development. The vision for the implementation of IDDA III is to firmly anchor Africa on a path towards inclusive and sustainable industrial development. The achievement of this vision requires the transformation of African countries into locations of competitive industrial production. Various development interventions and broad-based partnerships are required to improve the enabling framework, as well as to encourage productive industrial investment ventures in Africa. The Decade for industrial Development is not an isolated undertaking, but complements other key development initiatives, most notably the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The successful implementation of these key frameworks require strong partnerships and coordination with other stakeholders including the private sector within and beyond the continent.
The session will explore:
The recent pandemic gripped the global economy and had forced clean energy efforts to
significantly slow down, as it undermined the importance to combat climate change.
Furthermore, the considerable drop in oil prices has also affected the global movement
towards adopting renewable energy. The manufacturing industry faces challenges in
reducing carbon emissions from energy-intensive sectors such as aviation, shipping, trucking
and heavy industry. Decarbonising these sectors with today’s innovative technology is both
doable and affordable, and as governments have devised unprecedented economic stimulus
packages to help assist their economies emerge, it is important to encourage efforts to drive
climate action and invest in low-carbon solutions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
Despite the impact of the pandemic, many countries have commitments to move towards a
carbon-neutral future and have significant reduction plans in place.
H.E. Mr. Alexander Valentinovich Novak, Minister of Energy, Russia
Moderator: Hadley Gamble, CNBC
H.E. Suhail Mohamed Faraj Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, UAE
Moderator: Declan Curry
H.E. Gen. (Ret.) Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment – Indonesia
The disruptive impact of COVID-19 has inevitably encroached upon the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, which was adopted by the United Nations General
Assembly as the framework for guiding international development priorities and action until 2030. Global value chains have been severely disrupted, as the uncertainty of maintaining prior business operations has prompted an upsurge in protectionism in many countries, particularly for medical paraphernalia essential for combatting the public health risk posed by the pathogen. This has resulted in a concomitant downswing in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), with a significant reduction in investment flows worldwide. Moreover, the medical necessity of enacting far-reaching restrictions on movement has highly disrupted the modus vivendi for most of the human population worldwide. The need to fulfil work, family, social interactions has prompted a migration to the virtual domain, with many Information and Communication Technology (ICT) platforms benefiting as a result. However, this transition also implies an increase in unemployment, given that it is not possible for every sector to migrate digitally. Considering the broader implications of this crisis, it is clear that the pandemic has precipitated a profound shift in the way in which many people live, work and
socialize. This presents an immediate challenge to the viability of some sectors, but also
provides us with an opportunity to enhance business competitiveness and resilience and to
future-proof manufacturing, so that we avoid the damaging effects of unforeseen shocks and consequences in future. The Fourth Industrial Revolution can thus be a springboard to overcome disruption and catalyze digital transformation on a broad scale, contributing to
the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
The session will explore:
Dr. Jochen Köckler, Chairman of the Managing Board, Deutsche Messe AG
Innovation, creativity and necessity remain the driving forces behind the advancement of humanity and the acceleration of global good. The spike in demand for e-learning, seen during the pandemic, has encouraged new waves of education systems that are increasingly innovative, inclusive and sustainable. While digitisation offers opportunities to bridge the educational gap by providing cheaper and more accessible ways to learn, the recent crisis exposed the widening digital divide between developed and developing countries.
The pandemic crisis and its subsequent economic challenges presented a defining moment for companies worldwide. Businesses had the opportunity to emerge stronger and forge deeper relationships with customers and partners in order to build companies that are better adapted to tomorrow’s world. The crisis revealed to be unlike any previous situation, whereby traditional crisis-response approaches were not fit for purpose. As business leaders were thrust into situations requiring swift and effective action to ensure the survival of their organisations, many were left questioning whether their industries would be able to adapt to the new reality.
What can CEOs anticipate in the post-crisis world? With the accelerated adoption of digital commerce as a result of the COVID19 pandemic, will consumers return to traditional retail behavioural patterns, or will the digital migration fundamentally alter the global economy?
Moderator: Mr. John Defterios, CNN
Patrice Caine, Chairman and CEO, Thales Group
The recent pandemic crisis has exposed the vulnerability of global supply chains to unprecedented shocks. Attention continues to be placed on the need for global businesses to accelerate their digital transformation and adopt smarter and risk-adjusted business models. As the past few months forced a progressive reduction in physical interaction – be it customer-facing or across operations – automation and digitalisation have become vital for businesses to ensure sustainability.
Fortunately, new technologies have emerged that improve visibility across the supply chain and thus support a company’s resilience to such shocks.
Moderator: Ms. Laura Buckwell
Caroline Freund, Global Director, Finance, Competitiveness and Innovation, World Bank Group
More than two thirds of world trade occur through Global Value Chains (GVCs) where production crosses borders before making it to final assembly lines. Digital developments are transforming these GVCs by creating a new digital thread, allowing for advanced systems of traceability and improved logistics and planning. Moreover, the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) and its technological advancements have the potential to overcome the physical barriers imposed by any crisis to give societies the digital freedom to achieve
economic and social prosperity.
Moderator: Mr. Declan Curry
H.E. Nevein Essam El Din Gamea, Minister of Trade and Industry, Egypt
H.E Bandar bin Ibrahim al-Khorayef, Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources, Saudi Arabia
The biggest fear during the crisis has been its impact on the global economy and the uncertainty as to when the world’s businesses would return to normality. Large-scale quarantines, travel restrictions, and social-distancing measures have driven a sharp fall in consumer and business spending, which has caused the global economy to barrel towards a recession. Furthermore, the crisis had underscored economic inequalities, including those around gender. Women are not only paid less than men, but they make up the majority of global healthcare workers. As our economies slowly begin to emerge with challenging business conditions and unemployment, the current recession can only prolong a global slump.
Moderator: Mr. John Defterios, CNN
Over the last few months, the pandemic led to a growing concern about technology’s impact on the future of work, as this could accelerate the perceived “rise of the robots” and the threat to employment. Given that most factory floors had significantly shutdown, we witnessed a spike in automation and introduction of new business models, meaning some of the jobs lost during the crisis may never return as companies restructure their operations to rely more on machines. The industries where the workforce has most been affected are food and beverage, transportation and manufacturing. However, even big tech companies realise that heavily automated industries still rely on humans for essential tasks, and we are still far away from revamping factories to adopt full automation. Even during the outset of the crisis, where the need for automation became more apparent, economies still faltered without human workers, as machines still lack human intelligence and adaptability. What is important for the workforce is to leverage the educational strategies and policies which are required to keep up with the fast-changing employment needs of the industrial sector.
Educational systems need to change towards new curricula and new means of delivery with the goal of improved quality of education (SDG4).
Related issues include the following:
Moderator: Ms. Laura Buckwell
Olga Golodets, Former Deputy Prime Minister, Russian Federation, Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board, Sberbank
The pandemic placed a strain on vital industries including healthcare, education and telecommunications, where companies within these sectors had to face new realities that went beyond addressing the virus itself. The healthcare industry recognised the importance of technology to accelerate scientific research on sustainable solutions for future emergence of pathogens, drug development and more, by leveraging big and real-time data to guide operational decisions. Likewise, the shift of the global workforce towards remote-work caused unprecedented demand on telecommunications infrastructure and connectivity.
Cancelled domestic and global business travel further impacted the networks with increased reliance on videoconferencing and mobile communications. However, the opportunity to accelerate the adoption of technologies and leverage them to drive production during the crisis, when labour was for the most part unavailable, proved to be successful. We have witnessed a radical shift in traditional business models, where most companies have reimagined the ‘office’ workspace through virtual conferencing tools.
The vast variety of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) technologies make it difficult for companies to choose technologies relevant for them. It is argued that standardisation of these technologies could help companies decide which ones are useful. This session will review the current trends in absorbing digital technologies worldwide, and evaluate the opportunities to create transparency and standards through international institutions.
Furthermore, the recent pandemic has shown that policymakers need to act quickly to strategically formulate a relevant set of standards, as there is a greater shift towards digital adoption.
Elisabeth Winkelmeier-Becker, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, Germany
Electricity from renewable sources will become the most important energy carrier in order to achieve the climate targets set by the Paris Agreement. However, not all fossil fuels in the industrial sectors can be replaced by direct electrification, including parts of the raw materials and chemical industries as well as heavy goods, shipping and air transport.
Hydrogen and its derivates offer genuine technological and low carbon alternatives to
substitute fossil fuels in hard-to-abate sectors. This potential has recently been recognised from a wide range of policymakers and industry players. How hydrogen can help to transform into a sustainable industry and how new industrial value chains can be created will be discussed on the virtual panel.
Holger Lösch, Deputy Director General Executive Board, The Federation of German Industries (BDI), Germany
Mohamed Jameel Al-Ramahi, CEO, Masdar
Namir Hourani, Managing Director, Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit (GMIS)
Society 5.0 addresses a number of key pillars: infrastructure, finance tech, healthcare, logistics and, of course, augmented intelligence.
Emerging from Industry 4.0, Society 5.0 can
be defined as, “A human-centred society that balances economic advancement with the resolution of social problems by a system that highly integrates cyberspace and physical
space.” The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) will significantly enhance human capabilities through the use of technologies such as the IoT, augmented intelligence, autonomous vehicles and additive manufacturing. Society 5.0 moves beyond the digitalisation of manufacturing across all levels of society and enables super-smart society with customised solutions. It will affect not only the way we work but also the way we live, potentially upending our way of life as we know it. Society 5.0 aims to tackle social problems whilst still allowing economic development, but controlled by humans, not machines. This means new public-private collaboration that enables governments to more effectively and efficiently partner with industry, academia and society to respond to challenges or unlock new potential. As with Industry 4.0, Society 5.0 is closely aligned with the attainment of the UN 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development. However, there are several hurdles to overcome before we can achieve Society 5.0 transformation. Government bodies need national strategies, legal systems must be fit for purpose, there must be significant advances in technological capabilities, improved knowledge and understanding of users, and, arguably most important of all, social acceptance. Pittsburgh is emerging as a key centre for robotics innovation, artificial intelligence, and machine learning having drawn some of the world’s leading companies in the AI and tech industries to create offices and headquarters within the region.
Dr. Bernardo Calzadilla-Sarmiento, Managing Director, Directorate of Digitalization, Technology and Agri-Business, UNIDO