The Belgian-Chinese Chamber of Commerce (BCECC) hosted its event “Sustainability in China: A Business Case” on 2 March 2023, which gathered professionals from different sectors to delve into the sustainability challenges and business opportunities that arize in China’s rapidly urbanizing cities. The event took place in the state-of-the-art sustainable headquarters of BNP Paribas Fortis in Brussels, providing an ideal setting to address such an important topic.
The distinguished speakers brought their wealth of knowledge and expertise to the table, with Mr. Guy Pollentier, Head of the Sustainable Business Competence Center of BNP Paribas Fortis, exploring the business case of sustainability, while Prof. Dr. Ben Derudder of KU Leuven gave a captivating presentation on “The Urbanization-Sustainability Nexus in China: trajectories and implications”. Prof. Dr. Xiaoling Zhang from the City University of Hong Kong provided the necessary academic framework based on her research on the Sustainability Trilemma, and how environmental externalities, welfare inequality, and resources governance are related. Last but not least, Mr. Vladimir Tsaganov of Alibaba Cloud, spoke about the role of technology in promoting sustainable practices. To top it off, attendees had the opportunity to embark on a guided tour of the new BNP Paribas Fortis headquarters, experiencing firsthand how the company is leading by example in the realm of sustainability.
Overall, the event proved to be an enriching and eye-opening experience, showcasing how sustainability is not only a moral obligation but also a smart business strategy. The BCECC and its partners successfully shed light on the challenges and opportunities that businesses face in China’s urbanizing cities, leaving attendees with a heightened awareness and appreciation for sustainability’s critical role in our future.