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Adventurous ideas at the Expo

13 Jul 2010

Business experts from Australia and China made their way through the crowds at the Shanghai Expo on Monday to share their ideas on reform and innovation at the second University of Sydney symposium.

Professor Alex Frino (left) and Deputy Chancellor Alan Cameron at the Australian Pavilion.

The event, organised by the Faculty of Economics and Business, was part of the University's ongoing involvement with the Expo as a gold sponsor of the Australian Pavilion.

It brought together faculty staff, research partners from Chinese universities, and representatives from some of the leading corporate heavyweights in China.

Professor Peter Wolnizer, Dean of Economics and Business, described the program - based around the theme of reform for innovation and enterprise - as "an exciting adventure of ideas".

Alex Frino, Professor of Finance and chief executive officer of the Capital Markets Cooperative Research Centre, outlined one reform which is set to have a huge impact on already-booming China.

The China CSI 300 Futures Contract allows traders to buy or sell the leading 300 stocks in the Chinese marketplace in one transaction. Launched in April, it is already generating 350,000 contracts a day, each worth approximately US$120,000.

Professor Frino predicted that by the end of the year the CSI 300 would be the second biggest futures contract in the world and that it would be the spur for tremendous innovation and product development.

"A contract like this is the backbone for financial product development," he said. "It reduces the risk for investors and reduces volatility in the market."

Opening the symposium, the Commissioner General of the Australian Pavilion, Lyndall Sachs, said 3.2 million visitors had passed through the pavilion since it opened on 1 May.

"Our presence here shows to the massive China market and to the world that Australia is not just a mine, a farm or a beach but a dynamic country with a robust competitive economy, a stable and culturally diverse democratic society and a skilled workforce," she said.

"This is an $83 million dollar project - our largest ever investment in an Expo - and it is commensurate with the scope and scale of our relationship with Australia's largest trading partner."

The symposium was also attended by Alan Cameron, the University's Deputy Chancellor; Kevin McCann, Fellow of Senate; and John Egan, chair of the corporate advisory board to the Faculty of Economics and Business.

For further information about the University's program in Shanghai, visit our Expo website.