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September 27, 2010 Grand Opening of the Global Economic Symposium 2010


The event is launched: On Monday evening, the President of Turkey, Abdullah Gül, in­augurated the third Global Economic Symposium. For the first time this international conference takes place in the vibrating city of Istanbul — the only city in the world lying on two continents. More than 500 high-ranked representatives of business, academic and political background will discuss within the next two days the world’s most pressing issues and develop new solutions together. Among the participants are Nobel laureates and numerous managers of significant multinational companies.

Dennis Snower, president of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, took the opportunity not only to express some of his expectations and motives for the GES, but also to comment on the recent debates in Germany aroused by Thilo Sarrazin’s book Germany Abolishes Itself: “Sarrazin’s ability to capture public attention, along with high approval ratings, has been deeply disturbing. But what I found to be truly horrifying was the nature of the public debate that followed,” stated Snower, referring to discussions about empirical evidence of Sarrazin’s theses about genetically and cultural inferiority of immigrants and calls for compulsory language classes and history lessons.

“The main problem,” Snower continued, “is that the immigrants and indigenous Germans don’t feel that they belong to a common cause. Thus I believe that the GES needs a different conception of global citizenship, one that rests on a simple, but important, insight: Individuals become a community when they build something together that is of vital importance to them all — best of all, when they all create a home for them to live together.”

For this conception of global citizenship Snower values Turkey as the perfect host for the 2010 GES: “This country has valuable experience in bringing people together in a common cause. Turkey plays a unique role in the dialogue between East and West, as well as in the prolonged, ongoing discussions on the future of Europe. It is central to international strategies to advance defense security, energy security, and cross-cultural understanding. Turkey has large contributions to make in global problem solving.”

For the global problems discussed on the GES Snower highlighted earlier in his speech the focus on solutions instead of merely discussions: “We recognize that these problems call for concrete, feasible solution proposals. While we have enough discussion forums, we need a solution forum that seeks to be a catalyst for change. It is a solution forum that brings people from many professions, nations, beliefs and cultures together to work together.”

On tomorrow’s schedule are for example sessions to the following topics:

  • Cybercrime, Cybersecurity and the Future of the Internet,
  • Preparing for Environmental Migration,
  • Climate Change and Economic Development, and
  • The Psychology of Terrorism.

On Wednesday, September 29, experts from all over the world try to develop solutions for — among many others — these global problems:

  • Towards a Global Electricity Market,
  • Financing Old Age,
  • Meeting the Global Demand for Food, and
  • Responses for Potential National Insolvency.

A press conference with a first general appraisal will be held on September 29, 13:00 h local time. The Turkish Minister of Finance, Mehmet Şimşek, will share the podium with Durmuş Yılmaz, the Governor of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey, Dennis J. Snower, President of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy and Alessio J.G. Brown, Executive Director of the GES.

The Global Economic Symposium takes place once a year and is always also a huge event for the media — almost 200 journalists have registered this year to report from the conference. It is organized jointly by the Kiel Institute for the World Economy and the German National Library of Economics (ZBW) — Leibnitz Information Centre for Economics. This year the GES is hosted by the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.

The Kiel Institute’s media agency will be happy to receive your media-accreditation:

Effect Public Relations
Kısıklı Cad. No. 35/2 Altunizade
İstanbul, Turkey

Email: [Email protection active, please enable JavaScript.]
Phone +90 (533) 664 25 47 (Ms. Tugce Gozen)
Fax +90 (216) 474 00 01

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