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China Development Marketplace Exhibition and Awards Rescheduled

The World Bank Office Beijing announced yesterday that the exhibition and award ceremony of the China Development Marketplace will be rescheduled to February 23-24, 2006.

The main reason for rescheduling is to allow more time for promotion and outreach of the project.  More efforts need to be made to inform the public, especially the private sector, about the China Development Marketplace and encourage them to actively participate in this important initiative aimed at identifying and supporting innovative ideas and projects of the Chinese non-governmental organizations for poverty reduction.  

The announcement of the list of finalists in October generated a lot of interest among potential private sector donors, and the World Bank and its partners will use the extra preparation time to follow up on this interest.

There is also a need for more time to organize the logistics of the final events including the exhibition of the finalist projects in Beijing, the knowledge forum and the award ceremony.

Officially launched last June, the China Development Marketplace, co-sponsored by the World Bank, State Council Leading Group Office for Poverty Alleviation and Development and Ministry of Civil Affairs received positive responses among NGOs all over China. The 100 best project proposals selected out of 975 proposals submitted seek to address poverty in different forms, areas and sectors and provide better services for the poor and vulnerable groups with innovative ideas and ways.

The applicant non-governmental organizations range from people's groups, social organizations, non-profit private service providers, public benefit programs in universities and research institutes, to community-based and grass roots organizations all over the country.  Their common goal is to help reduce the remaining poverty and inequality and meet the new needs and challenges in China's development process for the building of a harmonious society.

China has seen significant growth of NGOs in the last two decades.  While most of them are very small and constrained by shortage of resources among other things, Chinese NGOs need public recognition and support including financial assistance to help them grow and play a bigger role in China's development.

"Now we have a great list of 100 NGO finalists. Given China's size and recent growth, we need more resources to support the worthy activities on the ground," said David Dollar, World Bank Country Director for China. "Rescheduling will give us the time we need to raise more resources, much of it from the private sector."

( November 11, 2005)


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