Estonia commits the highest aid to Ukraine by GDP share, dwarfing Germany by over 10x
KGCCI Holds First Ausbildung Graduation Ceremony
WTTC lauds PH successful hosting of Int’l tourism Summit
Brgy. Bojo in Aloguinsan, Cebu bags UNWTO best tourism village award
1st APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting Takes Place
Korean Government Announces 20 Million U.S. Dollars in Humanitarian Assistance for Yemen
MOFA of South Korea Chung Eui-yong Engages in an Exchange of Celebratory Letters with the MOFA of the Republic of Azerbaijan
MOFA of South Korea Expresses its Will to Increase Contribution to CEPI at Global Pandemic Preparedness Summit
South Korea MOFA Spokesperson’s Statement on Situation Regarding Ukraine
Inflation: Majority of Citizens Concerned About Their Money, Rural Population Especially Hardly Hit by Price Rises
Elsevier data shows UK a world leader in sustainable development research
Less than one month from the UK hosting the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), new data from Elsevier, a global leader in research publishing and information analytics, has revealed that the UK is a world leader in sustainable development research. Elsevier analyzed more than 25.6m research papers published between 2012 and 2020, exploring the quantity and quality of research dedicated to the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).1 While the UK outperformed many countries across the full suite of SDGs, it fell behind on some of the climate related SDGs—work that will be critical to the world finding lasting solutions to the climate crisis. Lesley Thompson, PhD, Director of Academic & Government Strategic Alliance, Elsevier, said: “Ahead of the UK’s moment on the center stage at COP26, it’s encouraging to see the UK’s research community leading the way in sustainable development. Research has a crucial role to play in finding solutions for many societal problems, from climate change to eliminating poverty. “That said, there is a disconnect between the UK government’s climate priorities and the research volume dedicated to these areas: to be globally competitive the UK needs to consider how it will increase support for research and innovation in affordable and clean energy, and responsible consumption and production, whether that be additional funding, higher prioritisation or a drive to attract new talent in these fields.” The analysis found that the UK exceeds the average output share of research among world-leading countries related to 11 out of 16 SDGs: No Poverty (1), Good Health and Well-Being (3), Quality Education (4), Gender Equality (5), Decent Work and Economic Growth (8), Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (9), Reduced Inequalities (10), Climate Action (13), Life Below Water (14), Life On Land (15) and Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions (17). However, the UK is lagging behind the average of world-leading countries in the volume of research related to several of the SDGs which also align with the UK Government’s agendas focused on the growth of sustainable industries in the UK, including: Affordable and Clean Energy (7), Responsible Consumption and Production (12), Sustainable Cities and Communities (11), Clean Water and Sanitation (6), and Zero Hunger (2). The quality of the research produced in the UK relating to the UN’s SDGs is world-leading across all 16 areas mapped. This feat was also achieved to a lesser degree by the USA, Italy and Germany as illustrated in the Appendix. China and India led the way in the volume of research in the fields of clean energy and water. To determine the UK’s performance against the average of eight world-leading countries (China, India, Japan, USA, France, Germany and Italy), each paper was analyzed and categorized in terms of subject focus and author location, before being mapped by Relative Activity Index (RAI) and Field Weighted Citation Index (FWIC)2. Last week also saw the launch of the Welsh Government Office for Science report “United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: Wales’ Research Performance” Kumsal Bayazit, Elsevier’s CEO, speaking at the launch said: “We all know that the creation, sharing and application of new knowledge is vital to addressing the societal grand challenges. Targeted investment in research, development and innovation have repeatedly delivered solutions to grand challenges and positive impact on society. It is encouraging that the UK has an ambitious plan to continue to increase R&D investment as percent of the overall GDP.” [Notes for editors] 1 The 17th UN Sustainable Development Goal, Partnerships for the Goals, targets collaboration and could not be assessed through publication analysis. 2 Relative Activity Index (RAI) is defined as the share of a country’s article output in a subject relative to the global share of articles in the same subject. A value of 1.0 indicates that a country’s/an institute’s research activity in a field corresponds exactly with the global activity in that field; a value higher than 1.0 implies a greater emphasis; and a value lower than 1.0 suggests a lesser focus. Field Weighted Citation Index (FWCI) is an indicator of the citation impact of a publication. It is calculated by comparing the number of citations actually received by a publication with the number of citations expected for a publication of the same document type, publication year, and subject. An FWCI of more than 1.00 indicates that the entity’s publications have been cited more than would be expected based on the global average for similar publications; for example, a score of 2.11 means the entity's publications have been cited 111% more than the world average. An FWCI of less than 1.00 indicates that the entity’s publications have been cited less than would be expected based on the global average for similar publications; for example, an FWCI score of 0.87 means the publications have been cited 13% less than the world average. [Main methodology] Since 2018, Elsevier has generated SDG search queries to help researchers and institutions track and demonstrate progress towards the targets of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In 2020, Elsevier, through its Science-Metrix group, taking the research community feedback into account, improved the search queries significantly. Those queries were then complemented by a machine learning model, which helped increase the number of papers identified for each SDG. As a result, this year’s “Elsevier 2021 SDG mapping” captures on average twice as many articles as the 2020 version.
Majid Al Futtaim Launches AI Powered Carrefour City+; The Region’s First Check-Out Free Store
Majid Al Futtaim – the leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia – is setting new precedents for retail with the launch of the region’s first check-out free store, Carrefour City+. Opened today in Mall of the Emirates, the new convenience store provides a fast, seamless and contactless experience using cutting-edge, artificial intelligence technology. Customers use their phones to access the store, pick their desired items and simply walk out without having to queue and pay at the cash register. Carrefour City+ was inaugurated by H.E Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications along with Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer of Majid Al Futtaim Holding and Hani Weiss, Chief Executive Officer at Majid Al Futtaim Retail. Store access and shopping payment is enabled via the current MAF Carrefour App. Once inside Carrefour City+, every item picked up by customers will then be automatically added to a digital shopping basket and the purchase will be completed by simply walking out. Not only is the shopping journey faster, but also completely contactless, with no store staff interaction necessary. “Carrefour City+ has been designed to make life easier by using technology to remove friction and enhance the retail experience,” revealed Hani Weiss, Chief Executive Officer at Majid Al Futtaim Retail. “The store represents a huge leap forwards for retail in the UAE and region as Carrefour continues to innovate to meet the needs of the present whilst anticipating future shopping trends.” A first for Carrefour worldwide, City+ deploys artificial intelligence and state of the art technology to identify thousands of products with pinpoint accuracy, improving inventory management and simplifying shopping for customers. Carrefour City+ stocks over 1,300 items including snacks, beverages, packaged food and food-to-go meals as well as basic essentials. It can easily be found near the entrance of the Mall of the Emirates Metro Station link for anyone wishing to try the world’s most advanced, ‘simply walk out’ shopping technology. Carrefour City+ is a prime example of the role of the private sector in supporting the UAE’s Fourth Industrial Revolution Strategy to become a leading global hub and an open lab for the Fourth Industrial revolution’s application. It is also in line with the UAE Artificial Intelligence Strategy that aims to make the UAE the first in the field of AI investments and applications in various sectors. Having established a reputation for innovation, modernity and technology, this retail revelation from Majid Al Futtaim contributes to the UAE’s transformation into an international technology hub as the government takes concrete steps towards establishing a strong, digitally enabled economy.
FIFA eWorld Cup line-up complete as world’s top 32 players prepare to take centre stage
After months of excitement, upsets, drama and countless surprises on the EA SPORTS FIFA 19 Global Series, the final line-up and participants for the FIFA eWorld Cup 2019 have been confirmed after the conclusion of the final round of the FIFA 19 Global Series Playoffs in Berlin. Nicolas “nicolas99fc” Villalba established his number one ranking spot in spectacular fashion after a stunning performance at the playoffs by being crowned FIFA 19 Global Series PlayStation Playoffs champion. Following the conclusion of FIFA 19 Global Series, Villalba will be one of the 32 top EA SPORTS FIFA 19 players in the world who have qualified and will go head-to-head at the FIFA eWorld Cup, which returns to The O2 in London on 2-4 August. Featuring competitors from England, Spain, Germany, France, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Brazil and other countries across the globe, the top players in the world will battle it out to become the FIFA eWorld Cup champion and win a life-changing USD 250,000 in prize money, along with a trip to The Best FIFA Football Awards™. The FIFA eWorld Cup 2019 will be broadcasted in six languages including English, German, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and Portuguese. The livestream will also be available on FIFA’s and EA’s digital platforms such as YouTube and FIFA.com and linear rights has been placed in over 50 territories. FIFA eWorld Cup – Group Draw Group A - Xbox • Donovan 'Tekkz' Hunt (ENG) - Seed #1 • Michael 'MegaBit' Bittner (GER) - #4 • Tom 'Stokes' Stokes (ENG) - #5 • Pedro 'Resende' Resende (BRA) - #8 • Dani 'Dani' Hagebeuk(NED)- #9 • Javier 'Janoz' Munoz (COL) - #12 • Tassal 'Tass' Rushan (ENG) - #13 • Ebio 'Ébinho' Da Costa Filho (BRA) - #16 Group B - Xbox • Mosaad 'Msdossary' Aldossary (KSA) - Seed #2 • Lucas 'DaXe’ Cuillerier (FRA) - #3 • Niklas 'NRaseck’ Raseck (GER) - #6 • Nawid 'GoalMachine' Norzai (CAN) - #7 • Dylan 'DullenMIKE' Neuhausen (GER) - #10 • Marcus 'MarcusGomes’ Gomes (AUS) - #11 • Fouad 'Rafsou’ Fares (FRA) - #14 • Kilian 'Zidane10’ Pita Ossario (ESP) - #15 Group C - PlayStation • Nicolas “nicolas99fc” Villalba (ARG) – Seed #1 • Lev “LevVinken” Vinken (NED) -#4 • Mohammed “MoAuba” Harkous (GER) - #5 • Diogo “tuga810” Pombo (POR) - #8 • Fatih “Üstün” Üstün (DEN) - #9 • Victor “Tore” Dos Santos Coelho (BRA) - #12 • Erhan “DrErhano” Kayman (GER) - #13 • Marko “Marko” Brijeski (AUS) - #16 Group D – Playstation • Corentin “MaestroSquad” Thuillier (FRA) - #2 • Stefano “Pinna97” Pinna (BEL) - #3 • Joksan “Joksan” Redona (USA) - #6 • Chris “Didychrislito” Holly (USA) - #7 • Flavio “Fifilza” Brito (BRA) - #10 • Gonçalo “RastaArtur” Pinto (POR) - #11 • Henrique “Zezinho” Lempke (BRA) - #14 • Tim “TheStrxngeR” Katnawatos (GER) - #15 Exciting on-site activities on the final day Visitors of the broadcasted event will have the chance to experience several on-site activities on 4 August. Fans will get the opportunity to play an early version of EA SPORTS FIFA 20 on site and discover up and coming music talents, who will be determined via a public contest beforehand, at The O2 Arena. Regular tickets will provide access for 4 August, including the two semi-finals as well as the final, while premium tickets will additionally offer exclusive access to the after-show party on 4 August and preferred seating.
Change at the helm of the Mercator Institute for China Studies
From this summer, the successful work of the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS) will continue under joint leadership. Research Director and CEO Frank Pieke and Deputy Director Mikko Huotari will take over together with the Chief Financial Officer Bettina Bubnys at the helm of the think tank from 1 August, as announced by Stiftung Mercator and MERICS today. The leadership duo will aim to reinforce the institute’s international reputation over the next few years, expand the network of partner organizations and embark on new cooperative ventures. Following an intensive selection and consultation process, a selection committee headed by Caio Koch-Weser recommended leadership candidates to Stiftung Mercator. “With Frank Pieke and Mikko Huotari, we picked two directors who will enable both advancement and continuity. Frank Pieke is an internationally renowned academic who combines expertise with international experience. In appointing Mikko Huotari as deputy director, we are opting for invaluable experience and continuity, as he has so far done some outstanding work at MERICS”, says Stiftung Mercator Executive Director Michael Schwarz. ”Under the new leadership, MERICS shall continue its outstanding and independent academic research and build upon its position as one of the world’s most renowned think tanks in the field of research on today’s China”, adds Schwarz. Frank Pieke is currently professor of contemporary Chinese studies at Leiden University and executive director of the Leiden Asia Centre. Trained at the University of Amsterdam, Beijing University and the University of California Berkeley, Pieke taught for many years first at Leiden University and subsequently at the University of Oxford. He returned to Leiden in 2010. His fields of research include cultural anthropology, the role of the Communist Party in the rapid rise of China, and migration and cultural diversity in China. As research director at MERICS, he is keen to raise the institute’s European profile. Mikko Huotari runs the Foreign Relations programme at MERICS. His research focuses on Chinese foreign policy, Chinese-European relations and the regional order in Asia. He has published extensively on China’s global investment strategy and economic relations with Europe. Before joining MERICS, Huotari taught at the Department of International Politics at the University of Freiburg. The current President of MERICS, Professor Sebastian Heilmann, will be stepping down for personal reasons with effect from 1 September 2018 and returning to his chair at Trier University, though he will also maintain close ties with MERICS. “Within just a few years, Professor Heilmann turned MERICS into one of the world’s leading think tanks on contemporary China. Stiftung Mercator is extremely grateful and obliged to him for his outstanding achievements as the founding director of MERICS”, says Michael Schwarz. Bettina Bubnys will continue to serve as the Chief Financial Officer of MERICS.
Fair Player Club Seminar for Compliance and Business Ethics with Delegation of the EU to the Republic of Korea and ECCK Was Held
The Fair Player Club Seminar for Compliance and Business Ethics with Delegation of the EU to the Republic of Korea and ECCK was held on Tuesday, December 5, 2017 at Conference Room on the 3rd Floor, Seoul Square Building, Seoul, Republic of Korea. Fair Player Club is a public-private sector platform to promote collective action for anti-corruption hosted by GCNK, organized by Global Competitiveness Empowerment Forum (GCEF), and supported by the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE), Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), Anti-Corruption & Civil Rights Commission (ACRC), and Siemens Integrity Initiative. The seminar was co-hosted by the Delegation of the EU to the Republic of Korea, the ECCK, and GCNK and organized by GCEF for capability empowerment for anti-corruption and risk management of the companies of EU member states and interested in the EU market. Dr. Joëlle Hivonnet, Minister Counsellor & Head of the Political, Press and Information Section, Delegation of the EU to the Republic of Korea emphasized significance of the seminar by highlighting, “Corruption is a drag on economic growth. By diverting resources away from economically productive outcomes, it undermines the efficiency of public spending. In the business environment, corruption creates uncertainty, slowing processes and potentially additional costs. Corruption deepens social inequalities, eroding trust in the State and confidence in institutions and governments and can ultimately prove a threat to democracy." Mr. Park Suk-bum, Secretary-General of GCNK said that “As the EU Directive on Disclosure of Non-Financial and Diversity Information is enacted, the companies with more than 500 employees in all EU member states should disclose their environmental, social, human rights and anti-corruption performance and monitoring procedures. As anti-bribery and anti-corruption are the subjects for mandatory information disclosure, South Korean companies working with European companies should improve their efforts on anti-corruption policies and programs and increase transparency.” Participants from the companies of EU member states and interested in the EU market were able to obtain implications of anti-corruption policy environment trends and prospects from the presentations on ‘Anti-Corruption Regulatory Policies of EU’ and ‘Anti-Corruption Policies of the South Korean Government’ by Dr. Joëlle Hivonnet, Minister Counsellor & Head of the Political, Press and Information Section, Delegation of the EU to the Republic of Korea and Mr. Yang, Jong-sam, Director of Anti-Solicitation Institution Division, ACRC respectively. Also, they learnt about compliance and business ethics policies and best practices of anti-corruption management system of European companies from Ms. Kim, Hyo-sin, Asia Pacific Compliance Officer, Continental Automotive Korea Ltd., Ms. Park, Jina (Ji-young), Compliance Officer, Boehringer-Ingelheim Korea Ltd., and Mr. Park, Jong-kun, Regional Compliance Officer, Siemens Ltd. Seoul. Mr. Sven-Erik Batenburg, Head of Legal & International Affairs of ECCK emphasized that “a transparent and open business environment is essential in building a fair and equitable economic society. This includes proper business conduct in all senses of the word, but in particular when it comes to compliance and avoidance of corruption. To facilitate such, ECCK operates a Compliance Forum and has also organized a roundtable meeting with Ms. Pak Un Jong, Chairperson of the ACRC, shortly after she took office.” At the seminar, Ms. Angela Joo-Hyun Kang, Founder and Executive President, GCEF presented ‘Introduction of Fair Player Club and Fair Play Pledge’ and Ms. Lee, Eun-kyung, Team Leader, GCNK presented ‘Introduction of Fair Play Compliance Packages’. Ms. Angela Joo-Hyun Kang, Founder and Executive President, GCEF emphasized the goals and impacts of Fair Player Club that “As 'Fair Play' spirit is important in sport games, ‘Fair play’ is also important in the market competition. Fair Player Club has been trying to create fair and clean market conditions in South Korea by pursuing Fair Play Pledge for all public enterprises, private companies and foreign investment companies competing in the South Korean market.” So far, 176 public enterprises, private companies, and public institutions have pledged for 'Fair Play' by reinforcing fair and transparent business and organizational management. Companies and organizations hoping to participate in collective action can join Fair Player Club and sign the Fair Play Pledge at any time without any cost. Fair Player Club is one of 24 global anti-corruption projects of the second round of Siemens Integrity Initiative, the joint project of the World Bank and Siemens AG, aiming to promote collective action in private and public sectors for creating fair and transparent market conditions. Fair Player Club has been organizing the anti-corruption seminar by collaborating with industry associations in the Cycle 1 (Industry) of 2015 and by cooperating with Seoul metropolitan government, six metropolitan cities, and local chambers of commerce & industry in the Cycle 2 (Region) of 2016. In 2017 (Cycle 3), the last year of the project, Fair Player Club has been collaborating with foreign embassies and foreign chambers of commerce & industry of Sweden, UK, US, Germany, and EU. Upcoming seminars will be held with China (December 20, 2017) and ASEAN.
Latvia proudly celebrates the 99th Anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic of Latvia with growing number of Friends in Korea and warm-up for C
Latvia proudly celebrates the 99th Anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic of Latvia with growing number of Friends in Korea and warm-up for Centenary Celebration in 2018 - Written address by the Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia Mr. Peteris Vaivars on the occasion of the National Day of Latvia (18 November) It is my great honor to address the people of Korea on the occasion of the 99th Anniversary of the Proclamation of the Republic of Latvia. On behalf of the President of Latvia, H.E. Raimonds Vejonis, I would like to express our deepest respect and true friendship to the people of Korea. It is with the great pleasure to note that our bilateral ties increase with every year and our two nations become closer to each other. Common values of democracy, protection of human rights, shared understanding of rule-based international system and peace lay a strong foundation for mutual understanding and development of bilateral relations between our countries. As a highlight, I am glad to note that this year Honorable Mr. SHIM, Jae-kwon, Chairman of Foreign Affairs and Unification Committee of the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea paid an official visit to Latvia and had many valuable meetings with Latvian top officials. Exchanges on the top level facilitate mutual dialogue, people-to-people contacts, business connections and cooperation in other fields. Furthermore, I would like to underline good increase of Korean business presence in Latvia and growing number of Latvian exports to Korea which increased by 15% and reached 50 million EUR in 2016 and shows rapid growth this year as well. Latvia is happy to welcome more Korean tourists which number is growing by 10-15% annually. In order to help discover our country, Latvian government has arranged First Official major Korean media representatives’ visit to Latvia and shooting of KBS popular travel documentary in Latvia this year in October. The program is about to be aired on KBS1 soon. The exact schedule will be announced on the Embassy’s official communication channels on FB and Twitter pages. This year was significant for the Embassy to acquire its new, permanent premises in Hannam-dong area to make a strong presence in Korea and to be able to increase its level of activities. We thank all our friends and partners for helping the Embassy to find and move to its new home. Since the establishment of the Latvian Embassy in Seoul, we have been blessed with the friendship of our Korean partners and are happy to increase our networks. Latvian dance and choir groups actively participate in International Festivals hosted by different cities and regions in Korea. World famous Latvia-born musicians like Mischa Maisky, Gidon Kremer and others are already very well known in Korea. This year in particular we are observing an increase of the number of Latvian athletes coming to Korea in relation to 2018 PyeongChang Olympic Games. We are glad that also many Koreans are interested in Latvian sports and that we can share our knowledge and expertise. I am sure that next year’s Olympic Games in Korea will turn to be one of the greatest sports events in the world. In 2018, when Korea will be hosting Winter Olympic Games in PyeongChang, Latvia will celebrate its 100th Anniversary. We will kick-off the celebration by the first ever visit of the President of the Republic of Latvia to beautiful country Korea in February 2018. Many other events like concerts, movie screenings, book publishing and others will follow. Please stay tuned to Latvian channels not to miss any of the important events. Let’s make year 2018 The Year of Latvia in Korea! In conclusion, I would like to wish everyone to have a quiet Christmas together with families, friends and loved ones along with my best wishes for a prosperity and happiness to the people of Korea and to all Latvians living in Korea. And just to remind, since everyone know that Santa Claus is coming from our neighbouring country Finland, the tradition of decorating the Christmas tree comes from another very friendly and welcoming country of Northern Europe – Latvia! Peteris Vaivars Ambassador of the Republic of Latvia
2017 WTCF Los Angeles Fragrant Hills Tourism Summit Kicks Off
WTCF Los Angeles Fragrant Hills Tourism Summit 2017 was held on September 19. The Summit, themed "Impact of Globalization on World Tourism City Development," attracted about 400 delegates from 51 countries and 87 cities. A total of 37 ministers and mayors, senior managers from international tourism organizations and representatives from international organizations including UNWTO and PATA were invited to attend the summit. The opening ceremony was hosted by Mr. Ernest Wooden Jr., Vice-Chairman of WTCF Council and President and CEO of Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board. Chen Jining, Chairman of WTCF Council and acting Mayor of Beijing; Li Jinzao, Chairman of China National Tourism Administration; Zhu Shanzhong, Executive Director of UNWTO; and Mr. Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles delivered remarks at the ceremony. Song Yu, Secretary-General of WTCF; Ms. Pia Riika Birgitta Pakarinen, Vice Mayor of Helsinki; Karl Wöber, Director of the Expert Committee of WTCF; and Jeanie Buss, Controlling Owner and President of the Los Angeles Lakers made keynote speeches under the theme of "Globalization and its Impact on World Tourism City Development." In his remarks, Chen Jining, Chairman of WTCF Council and Acting Mayor of Beijing, expressed his hope that a deeper understanding of globalization would be obtained through the insightful discussions during the summit. He also noted that a more open collaborative platform should be built as a result of the summit to promote a more inclusive and balanced globalization in favor of robust tourism growth worldwide. 19 new members were sworn into WTCF at the opening ceremony where promotional films featuring the world tourism city data platform and tourism investment guide were released. Mrs. Raisa Banfiled, Vice-Mayor of Panama City, delivered a speech on behalf of all new members. During the ceremony, the Los Angeles Declaration of World Tourism Cities Federation was unveiled. Under the theme of globalization and collaborative development of world tourism cities, the declaration makes the following six-point proposal to all its members: 1) further boost the tourism industry worldwide; 2) improve tourism service quality across the world; 3) facilitate a collaborative and balanced development of world tourism; 4) make tourism service more accessible and efficient; 5) build up security to assure tourists; 6) effectively protect tourism resources. Three bid cities made presentations to the Council Meeting, and the city of Helsinki was finally chosen to host the WTCF Fragrant Hills Tourism Summit 2019. During this Summit, events such as the tourism exhibition, tourism trade and investment fair and tourism promotion meeting were held by WTCF to facilitate better communication and collaboration among its members who were able to showcase innovative tourism products and explore new market potential. The Tourism Investment Fair, co-hosted by the Committee of Investment, the Sub-Committee of WTCF, and the World Trade Center Los Angeles allowed participants to engage in efficient dialogue and cooperation opportunities between famous Chinese tourism and their counterparts from Spain and the US. During the tourism trade fair, 17 of the top 20 Chinese enterprises including CITS, CYTS, CTS, BTG, Ctrip and Tuniu.com had exchanges with nearly 100 enterprises from L. A. and others. During the press briefings, tripartite agreements were signed by WTCF and with Helsinki, Tencent, Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board, Qingdao Tourism Development Committee, and Xiamen Airlines. WTCF will continue to promote win-win development between and among cities and institutions and build a wider platform for all members. Four themed forums of the summit will be held the on following day. The topics of the four themed forums are "Solutions to Challenges Faced by Tourism Cities, Competitive Strengths and Brand Building of Tourism Cities, Policy Environment Promotes Tourism Investment, and China's Outbound Tourism: New Trend and Market Dynamics." Mayors from tourism cities, executives from tourism institutions, and scholars are invited to discuss the most concerned topics such as travel security, brand marketing, advantages of infrastructure and resources, investment, etc. The Research Report on World Tourism City Development 2017 and UNWTO-WTCF City Tourism Performance Research is scheduled to be released during the 2017 Summit. The former aims to steer world tourism development along the modern, standardized, and collaborative path by analyzing individual cases of tourism cities and benchmarking evaluation criteria. UNWTO and WTCF jointly launched the City Tourism Performance Research in 2016. The research is an instrument with a set of criteria that could be used globally to benchmark tourism performance. So far, case studies conducted in 16 sample cities have been completed, which lead to the discovery of 25 profound issues that may determine the development of world tourism cities. 2017 WTCF Fragrant Hills Tourism Summit has won WTCF worldwide acclaim by exhibiting its quality service, superb leadership, and increasing influence on its members and the global tourism industry. It is predicted that WTCF will usher in a new era of global development for the world tourism cities.