The New Economy Forum, a major global conference of political leaders organised by Bloomberg, was moved from Beijing to Singapore after organisers were told that President Xi Jinping and other leaders in China were keener to promote the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, a showcase event for the Chinese government.
Chinese officials asked the organisers to postpone the forum, slated for early November, until next year due to ‘scheduling conflicts’, prompting billionaire media mogul Michael Bloomberg to move the event to Singapore. In a statement, Bloomberg said Singapore was chosen to host because of "its position as one of the world’s leading international and business hubs".
According to The New York Times, the move out of Beijing indicated the ‘difficulty of conducting business’ because of rising tensions between China and the US. On top of that, the import expo has taken on new significance for Chinese leaders because of the trade war.
The New Economy Forum will aim to rival the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. In an interview with Financial Times, Bloomberg said: “Davos has been around for a long time: it’s a very big conference and it’s focused on lots of world problems. This conference is focused on the world and China as an emerging power and how we all work together.”
The event will be held in Singapore on 6 and 7 November and will be supported by 11 founding partners including Ajay Banga, president and CEO for Mastercard, and Satya Nadella, CEO for Microsoft. A venue is yet to be confirmed.