Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts announced that the Surrey Regional Economic Summit on February 27, 2014, will take a decidedly international turn as it looks at what can be learned from the economies of Australia, Greece and Israel with the help of former Prime Ministers Julia Gillard, George Papandreou and Ehud Barak.
The hope of organizers was to land a high profile name to the summit, however, Hilary Clinton decided that Vancouver was a better fit for her appearance in Metro Vancouver.
The Surrey Summit will also hear from energy activist, philanthropist and Chairman of BP Capital Management, T. Boone Pickens, the legendary Texas oilman committed to reducing America’s dependence on OPEC oil.
In addition, the Summit’s signature economic panel will feature Ken Peacock, Chief Economist of the Business Council of British Columbia, Michael Goldberg, Dean Emeritus of UBC’s Sauder School of Business, and Andrew Ramlo, Executive Director, Urban Futures.
“The annual Surrey Summit has become one of Canada’s highest profile business and economic conferences, with a well-earned reputation for insightful commentary on a broad range of issues that impact our community, province and country,” said Mayor Watts.
“Since we began the Summit six years ago, Surrey has created a forum for business, government and community leaders to come together to learn more about significant issues impacting our region and the world. That broader perspective is a big part of the Summit’s continued success and an important part of Surrey’s progressive economic development strategy.”
The Surrey Summit’s organizing committee, chaired by Councillor Linda Hepner, will finalize the full conference agenda, including a panel session on the Canada-European Union Free Trade Agreement,over the next few weeks.
“This is our sixth Surrey Regional Economic Summit and our aim has always been to hear from a variety of voices,” explained Councillor Hepner. “This year’s speakers and panellists will certainly give us a wide range of perspectives, particularly as we look at the very different economies of Australia, Israel, and Greece, and what we can learn from each of them.”
“I’m also looking forward to hearing from Mr. Pickens on his high profile ‘Pickens Plan’ for America’s energy future, as well as his support of Canada’s energy sector. As an authoritative voice on a wide variety of energy issues, including oil, gas and alternative energy, his comments and insight are of particular interest as we tap into our own energy prospects and potential.”
Since 2008, the Surrey Summit has heard from a variety of prominent international speakers and presenters, including Bill Clinton, Tony Blair, George W. Bush, Sir Richard Branson, Rudy Giuliani, and Steve Forbes, as well as business and economic experts and commentators from Canada, the United States, Asia and Britain.
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