October 7-8, WARSAW - POLAND
2017 WAIPA World Investment Conference Video
2016 WAIPA World Investment Conference Video
About 24th WAIPA World Investment Conference

WIC Topic: The future of FDI: Prospects, challenges and role of IPAs


Rationale for Panel 1

Recover the slide of FDI: Key factors, policy concerns and opportunities.

Estimated global FDI flows were $1.3 trillion in 2018, which is 13% decline compared to the last year. This is the third consecutive drop in FDI flows and lowest since the global financial crisis. FDI slide is mainly concentrated in developed economies that experienced staggering 40% decline in FDI inflows. Key drivers behind these trends are policy and economic factors in addition with the structural changes in the way international business is conducted, i.e. rise of the digital economy and shift towards intangibles.

Implications of negative FDI trends are important concern for policymakers as FDI is an essential element in countries’ efforts to stimulate and enhance economic development. Especially it is significant for the developing world and transition economies due to their need of capital to stimulate industrialization. This panel will discuss main factors behind the slow-down in overseas investments, role of IPAs and attempt to find solutions.


  • UNCTAD. (2019). Global Investment Trend Monitor, No:31. Geneva.
  • UNCTAD. (2019). World Investment Report. Geneva.


Rationale for Panel 2: FDI in the digitalized world

The digital revolution has left profound impact on the overall global economy. The recent statistics show that half of the world’s population is online, while internet industry has significant contribution to the GDPs of countries. These trends have significant implications on FDI. They shaped the way international business is conducted producing the new investment patterns with different impacts on host countries. Furthermore, digital technologies enabled higher efficiency and provided new development opportunities.

Reaping the benefits of digitalization remain a big challenge for countries all over the world as it requires adjustment of their development policies. This session will gather experts to discuss solutions for overcoming barriers that impede the development of digital economy. It will also address the main impacts of digitalization and technology on the current investment outlook, labor market, and how IPAs can utilize digitalization for determining potential projects and predict which companies are more likely to commit to an investment project.


  • Casella, B., & Formenti, L. (2018). FDI in the digital economy: A shift to asset-light international footprints. Transnational corporations, Vol:25, No:1. UNCTAD, Geneva.
  • Knight, C. (2018, April). Presentation: Emerging technologies and how IPAs can use them. WAIPA workshop at Annual Investment Meeting (AIM), Dubai.
  • UNCTAD. (2017). World Investment Report: Investment and the digital economy. Geneva.


Rationale for Panel 3: New types of investments

New type of investments, such as Venture Capital (VC), Corporate Venture Capital (CVC), Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWF), family offices, and impact investments, are offering new opportunities for countries to boost their development. For example, concepts of financing emerging companies with high growth potential, i.e. startups, known as VC or CVC investments are at record levels despite negative global FDI trends. Global analysis of venture funding by KPMG revels continues six-year straight growth of VC reaching $254 billion in 2018. Additionally, corporate participation in VC deals, i.e. CVC, reached an all-time high, where corporations participated in 20% of all VC deals in 2018.

Furthermore, although SWF are growing less rapidly than before they are still playing important role in global capital markets. Another emerging source of investments are family offices. According to the EY’ sources, there are more than 10,000 single family offices worldwide. Also, more and more investors are focusing on impact investments. These types of investments are following ethical principles and creating positive social impact.

This panel will gather experts to discuss what are the main pros and cons of these new types of investments? How governments can create fertile environment for creation of startups and utilize opportunities that VC investing is offering? How startups can go about capturing the attention of CV and CVC investors? Which key factors are driving SWF and family offices to invest? What is the future of impact investments?


  • KPMG. (2019). KPMG Venture Pulse Q4 2018: Global analysis of venture funding.
  • Dressler, A. (2019, February). Presentation: FDI drivers. WAIPA “Innovation in Investment Attraction” training, Istanbul.
  • East, D. (2018, January). Presentation: Global FDI trends. WAIPA “FDI Essentials” training, Istanbul.
  • Elliot, H., & Alexander, P. How do Sovereign Wealth Funds invest?. SSGA, Boston.
  • EY. (2016). EY Family Office Guide.






7 October 2019, Monday




  • 09:00 – 09:30 Registration


  • 09:30 – 12:30 Workshop* (details tbd)

(Location: tbd)


  • 09:30 – 12:30 Steering Committee Meeting**                           

(Location: tbd)


  • 12:30 – 14:00 Luncheon

(Location: tbd)


  • 14:00 – 17:30 WAIPA General Assembly Meeting***

(Location: tbd)


  • Opening Call and Chairmanship
  • Audited Financial Statements 2018-2019
  • Annual Report of WAIPA Activities 2018-2019
  • Elections (Moderator Jean-Louis Collart – WAIPA Legal Advisor)


*/***) Participation in the Workshop and General Assembly is restricted to WAIPA Members


**) Participation in the Steering Committee Meeting is restricted to WAIPA Regional Directors


  • 19:30 – 21:00 Gala Dinner                          


Location: tbd

Dress Code: Business Attire




8 October 2019, Tuesday




(Location: tbd)


  • 08:00 – 09:00 Registration


  • 09:00 – 10:30 Conference Opening


  • 10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break


  • 11:00 – 12:30 First Plenary Session
    “Rebounding the slide of FDI: Key factors, policy concerns and opportunities.”


  • 12:30 – 14:00 Luncheon (location TBD)


  • 14:00 – 15:30 Second Plenary Session
    “FDI in the digitalized world”


  • 15:30 – 15:45 Coffee Break


  • 15:45 – 17:15 Third Plenary Session
    “New Types of Investments”


  • 17:15 – 17:30 Closing Remarks


  • Bostjan Skalar, Executive Director, WAIPA
Leadership and Advocacy Training
9-10 October 2019, the FDI Excellence Series: Leadership and Advocacy Training in collaboration with Andreas Dressler.

Please click here in order to see the details about the Leadership and Advocacy Training


Previous speakers included...
Learn about the speakers of the #WIC18 conference.
Ms. Githa Roelans is Head of the Multinational Enterprises and Enterprise Engagement Unit of the ILO Enterprises Department. The unit provides policy advice and technical support on the application of the principles of the ILO Tripartite Declaration concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy (MNE Declaration) and plays a central role in the ILO’s engagement with...
Simon Lacey is currently Vice-President at Huawei Technologies Shenzhen China, working in the company’s Global Government Affairs division on issues of Trade Facilitation and Market Access. He is the lead author of a company white paper entitled Trade Rules for the Digital Economy. Prior to joining Huawei Simon (a native of Sydney Australia) obtained a...
HAI Helen is the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) Goodwill Ambassador for industrialization in Africa. She is the Director General of the Made in Africa Initiative which advises African government for industrialization and investment promotion. Ambassador Hai is Co-Founder of C&H Garments, which is a pioneer Pan-Africa export-oriented garments manufacturer. She is also heading...
James Zhan has been Director of Investment and Enterprise at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) since 2009. He also leads the preparation of the annual UN World Investment Report. Dr. Zhan has rich experience and expertise in trade, investment, technology, entrepreneurship, corporate governance, business facilitation and national development strategies. He has...
Peter Fuhrman is Chairman & CEO at China First Capital, a Greater China-focused international investment bank and principal investment firm headquartered in Shenzhen. Founded a decade ago, China First Capital advises and invests alongside a distinguished group of clients, including industry leaders in China, both private sector companies and SOEs, financial sponsors, as well as global...
Leader for Investment Promotion at the World Bank Group. Global executive with 32-yrs experience in international business, investment promotion and private sector development with development organizations, private sector associations, governments, multinationals, and SMEs mostly in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Caribbean, and Africa, but also getting more involved in Eastern Europe and Asia. Within the...
Niels Maas (1971) CEO at Forglobal. Foreign investment expert. Strong advocate for global citizenship. Forglobal is a leading network for investment promotion agencies all around the world. Forglobal makes international expansion simple: we connect investment promotion agencies, service providers and foreign businesses across borders. Forglobal is rapidly building its international business community where you can...
Kenny McDonald, CEcD Kenny has served as president and chief economic officer of Columbus 2020 since the organization’s inception in 2010. He has helped lead the execution of the Columbus 2020 Regional Growth Strategy and development of the Columbus Region’s competitiveness agenda, and he has also built local and national partnerships that have accelerated the...
  Anne Chappaz is the Chief of the Institutional Strengthening Section of the International Trade Centre (ITC) in Geneva. ITC is a joint UN and WTO organisation, building the international competitiveness of small and medium sized businesses. Her team of experts deliver trade and investment impact for good, by helping trade and investment promotion organizations...
Mr. Ratnakar Adhikari has been serving the Executive Secretariat for the Enhanced Integrated Framework at the World Trade Organization as its Executive Director since October 2013. Prior to this assignment, Mr Adhikari was the Chief Executive Director of South Asia Watch on Trade, Economics and Environment (SAWTEE), a Kathmandu-based regional think tank. Previously, he served,...
Stefan Kratzsch has been working for almost 15 years for the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in areas of investment promotion and private sector development. He is employed as an Industrial Development Officer in the Investment Promotion Division of UNIDO’s Department of Trade, Investment and Innovation (TII). He was part of the UNIDO team...
Cristián is currently the Associate Director for International Trade and Investment at the World Economic Forum. He holds a Master of Laws (LL.M.) from Harvard Law School, an LL.B. from the University of Concepcion, Chile, and a Master in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where he was an Edward S. Mason...
Christina became partner of GDP Global Development in 2005 when leaving Invest in Sweden Agency (ISA – now Business Sweden). With 20 years dedicated to investment promotion, she has successfully undertaken multiple strategic consulting and training assignments in investment promotion for national and regional governments, embassies and IPAs across 70 countries on the five continents,...
Célestin Monga is Vice President for Economic Governance and Knowledge Management at the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group. He previously served as Managing Director at the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, and Senior Advisor/Director for Structural Transformation at the World Bank. He has held various board and senior positions in academia and financial services, including...
Mr. Liu Dianxun is Director General of the Investment Promotion Agency of the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (CIPA). He successively served as Deputy Director of the Department of Protocol of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, Second Secretary of the Economic and Commercial Counselor’s Office of the Embassy of...
Wang Shouwen, male and of Han ethnicity, was born in Xuancheng, Anhui Province in Mar. 1966. He started his career in Feb. 1989 and joined the Communist Party of China (CPC) in Apr. 1986. Wang obtained a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Hunan University, a master’s degree in economics from the University of International Business...
Mr. Upendra Tripathy, former Secretary to the Government of India in the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, has made exceptional and outstanding contribution in ushering in the 175 GW target and policies that transformed India’s renewable energy sector between 2014 and 2016. In ex-officio capacity, he has headed Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI),...
Adrienne Klasa is Development Finance Editor of The Banker and fDi magazines at the Financial Times Group. Previously she was Editor of This is Africa, the Financial Times’ flagship Africa publication. Her writing has also appeared in the Financial Times, the Guardian, Forbes, Slate and Foreign Policy, among others. She speaks and moderates at events worldwide...
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