The major discussion themes for the symposium included global sustainability, green development, large-scale disaster, and integrated risk governance, which were pursued in a context of an increasingly interrelated hazard-risk environment. For much of the discussion, the Belt and Road Initiative was chosen as a departure point, in which risks as well as opportunities were explored from both the global and the Chinese perspectives.

The symposium brought together over 100 participants from 25 nation states, United Nations agencies, civil society organizations, academia, and research groups. Also featured were over 50 speakers who ranged from senior government officials to technical experts, highlighted by the Head of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction and the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Civil Affairs of China.

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