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CEO Summit - day one wrap!

Day one of the APEC CEO Summit has drawn to a close with words of warning and encouragement from world leaders, international academics and global CEOs.

The virtual two-day Summit, being broadcast from the Aotea Centre in Auckland, has covered a range of topics including the economic state of the world, the digital disruption opportunity, Covid recovery and the sustainability imperative.

New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, opened the Summit by saying the economic recovery from COVID must be inclusive, equitable and involve the business community.

China President Xi Jinping said working together and keeping a steady ‘hand on the tiller’ would be crucial to meet the challenges of this ‘once in a century test’. He acknowledged the importance of non-discriminatory trade architecture to bring people out of poverty and enhance their well-being.

Human rights lawyer, Amal Clooney remarked in her keynote speech that businesses can no longer bury their heads on the sand on human rights, and that some companies are waking up to the idea that doing good, is good for business.

Digital innovator Amber Mac reinforced Ms Clooney’s comments, saying that what the world needs now is humane technology (technology which is designed to be socially responsible, providing benefits for users and society) and leadership that puts people first.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called for stronger rules for the tech sector, stating it would be better for the sector to work in partnership with governments on regulation, or government will just do it anyway.

Former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said the world will not be the same again. “This is not our last pandemic threat, but it could be our last pandemic, if we get this recovery right”.

American TV host, comedian and “Friend of New Zealand” Stephen Colbert popped up in a cameo role taking the mickey out of the ‘Nu Ziland’ accent and referred to Jacinda Ardern as ‘the head shelia’ who invited him to drop in and say “Gidday’ to the over 1000 delegates attending online.


Quotes of the day …

“Businesses are not only incidental but absolutely essential to advance human rights in our interconnected world.” Amal Clooney


“If inequality gaps were glaring before Covid, they have become even more evident as a result of it.” President of Peru José Pedro Castillo Terrones,


“Public trust and confidence in science and information is crucial for a lasting recovery from COVID-19” Rt. Hon Helen Clark.


“Over history we’ve gone through seismic shifts…this is one of those times. Let’s reflect and apply what we’ve learned through COVID to create that new world. Let’s make sure the growth is focused in the right way in a more inclusive, ESG way.” PwC Global Chairman Robert Moritz