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Global UBS Philanthropy Forum brought to Asia for the first time

Singapore | | Media Releases APAC

UBS today announced the opening of the Global UBS Philanthropy Forum in Singapore. It is the first time the leading global exchange platform for private philanthropy has taken place in Asia. Over the next two days the Forum will bring together philanthropists, business leaders, social entrepreneurs, and representatives from civil society around the world to consider the theme of 'Building Change Communities' through a series of workshops and discussions.

"In a world faced with challenges ranging from extreme poverty to global warming and civil conflicts, UBS recognizes the vital roles played by entrepreneurs and philanthropists in providing risk capital for social development. It was in response to increasing interest by private individuals to help overcome social challenges that we launched the Global UBS Philanthropy Forum three years ago. This year, we are delighted to bring the Forum to Asia for the first time, a reflection of the growing influence of the region and UBS's commitment to its growth," said Raoul WEIL, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Global Wealth Management and Business Banking of UBS AG.

The Global Philanthropy Forum is designed to provide a 'safe space' environment in which philanthropists can exchange insights with peers and learn from others in the field. It will also showcase a range of state-of-the-art approaches to giving and implementation models. Previously, the Forum has been held in Switzerland, Italy, Portugal and Monaco.

Said Kathryn SHIH, Head of Wealth Management, Asia Pacific: "Over the past two decades, philanthropy has gained prominence in Asia due to the substantial increase in economic power and wealth in the region. While philanthropy in Asia has a long history, many philanthropists here are now looking beyond the Asian model and seeking to integrate aspects of philanthropy in the West. The Global UBS Philanthropy Forum aims to be a conduit for the best practices in philanthropy globally. We are honored and privileged that Singapore is hosting the Forum this year. It is also an acknowledgement of Singapore's growing innovation in this area. With the support of the government and various community institutions, Singapore is emerging to be a leading centre for philanthropy."

The Forum will feature in excess of 200 participants from various backgrounds and countries. They include: Singapore's Minister Mentor, Lee Kuan Yew; Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, board member of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation; Scott Weber, the Director-General of Interpeace, one of the largest peacebuilding organizations in the world; Lester M. Salamon, Professor at the Johns Hopkins University and director of the Center for Civil Society Studies at the Johns Hopkins Institute for Policy Studies; Chinese actor, Jet Li, and Australian professional golfer, Adam Scott, both of whom launched their foundations in Singapore in the past week.

UBS is also proud to partner with the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre and the Lien Centre for Social Innovation to organize side events in the context of the 2008 Forum - events which will allow the Singapore public access to the insights of some of the Forum's key speakers.

The UBS Philanthropy Services platform was established in 2004 in Switzerland.
Following a growing regional interest in social investment, philanthropists are increasingly seeking professional advice. In response, in 2005 UBS regional advisory teams of UBS Philanthropy Services were established in Hong Kong and Singapore, and recently a dedicated team in Australia was added. UBS Philanthropy Services has organized six philanthropy roundtables in Asia Pacific since 2005 as well as a number of other philanthropy-related events. In 2007, UBS was ranked as #1 by Euromoney in the provision of philanthropy services.

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