Alibaba execs coming to Davao Icon

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/22 May) – Top executives of Alibaba Cloud International, a business unit of Alibaba Group owned by Jack Ma will grace the two-day Davao Investment Conference (Davao ICon) here next month.

During Wednesdays’ Habi at Kape, Dr. Maria Lourdes G. Monteverde, Davao ICon 2019 chairperson and Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. trustee, said Ma himself was invited, but she could not confirm his attendance.

The conference is themed “Davao: Your Southeast Asian Investment Destination” on June 20 to 21, 2019 at the SMX Convention Center.

Monteverde said the top officials of Alibaba confirmed on Tuesday they were coming to discuss about the “4th Industrial Revolution and how the cloud technology is going to impact the global e-commerce.”

“That’s the theme we have suggested to them but they might take on some interesting topics that they are very capable of that is a bit high level but we really have to adapt and learn also,” she said.

The Chinese tech magnate, known as the richest man in China, visited the Philippines in 2017 and gave a talk before students at the De La Salle University.

“I am not going to get into the details yet. This is the first time that Alibaba Cloud Technology will be here in Davao. You know there are a lot of changes in the corporate structure of Jack Ma. I’m not saying that it’s going to be Jack Ma or somebody else but it’s going to be the Alibaba Cloud Technology,” she said.

She said the chamber took advantage of the good relationship between the Philippines and China to bring top Chinese corporate personalities to the Davao ICon.

John Tria, DCCCII executive vice president, emphasized the importance of the discussion of the Alibaba as the “digital economy is what will propel the growth” of the Davao Region, which saw a gross regional domestic product of 8.6 percent in 2018.

“When you say the economy is growing beyond 5 percent that becomes very, very interesting. The growth you are seeing is not only this year, it’s been happening for the last five to six years. That means if your growth is at that level for more than five years then you better be serious about going into that economy before others do,” he said.

Monteverde said the two-day international conference would gather top diplomats, members of the international chambers of commerce, and foreign and local business delegates.

“We cascaded and sent out our invitations to the global investors group through the DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs) and trade attaches of each embassy and of course through the linkages that we have with our foreign chambers who have joined us,” she said.

Monteverde said they would showcase the readiness of Davao as an investment destination in terms of infrastructure, sufficiency of power and water supply, and planned developments such as airport and seaport modernization.

Udenna Development Corp. of business tycoon, Dennis Uy, plans to develop three big projects in Davao City: Davao People Mover (monorail), Sasa Port Modernization Project, and the Intermodal Transport Hub. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)