Forum Macao News

Press conference of the 3rd edition of the 929 Challenge involving university students from China and Portuguese-speaking Countries

The 3rd edition of the 929 Challenge, a competition for university students from China and Portuguese-speaking Countries (PSCs), will be held in Macao in October this year. The event is co-organized by the Permanent Secretariat of Forum Macao, City University of Macau, University of Macau, Macau University of Science and Technology, University of Saint Joseph, Macao Institute for Tourism Studies, United Nations University Institute in Macau, Shenzhen University, Guangzhou University of Foreign Studies, Guangdong Polytechnic Normal University, and the Rio de Janeiro State University.

The organizers held a press conference on May 30 at the multifunctional room of the Permanent Secretariat of Forum Macao. The Deputy Secretary-General of Forum Macao, Casimiro de Jesus Pinto, gave a speech on behalf of the Permanent Secretariat, saying that the 929 Challenge is a well-known competition for the entrepreneurial field and startups in China and PSCs, and has become an important mechanism for attracting entrepreneurs with a global perspective to focus on the Greater Bay Area and PSCs. The organizers attach great importance to Forum Macao. Since the first Challenge in 2021, the Permanent Secretariat of Forum Macao has been actively participating in this activity even during the epidemic. The Challenge is beneficial for promoting the cooperation between Macao, the Greater Bay Area and PSCs. Currently, the Permanent Secretariat of Forum Macao is committed to fostering the construction of the Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin and supporting Macao’s “1+4” adequate economic diversification strategy. It is convinced that the Challenge will bring many benefits to the participating entrepreneurs and startups, which is not only conducive to expanding its international influence and establishing wider connections but also helps to attract investors and seize opportunities for potential customers. At the same time, the participants can also obtain constructive guidance from experienced professionals.

As a renowned competition especially for entrepreneurs and start-ups of China and PSCs, the 2nd 929 Challenge last year attracted 250 teams from China and PSCs, and more than 1,200 entrepreneurs had participated and submitted 180 business proposals. 16 proposals were selected for the finals. After the competition, 6 Portuguese startups were recommended and established contact with 2 Chinese investment companies. This year, the 3rd edition of the 929 Challenge covers 9 core cities in the Greater Bay Area, 2 special administrative regions and 9 PSCs, aiming to share ideas and resources on innovation and entrepreneurship through collaboration, while providing young people with in-depth insight regarding the business environment and development opportunities in China and PSCs. The organizers tend to encourage the young participants to pursue their ideas and dreams, broaden their international horizons, promote youth entrepreneurship, as well as attract more investors, enhance Macao’s role as a bridge between China and PSCs while showcasing Macao’s  platform function to the world.

The representatives from several referred institutions attended the press conference and gave brief speech about the 929 Challenge, including the Deputy Secretaries-General of the Permanent Secretariat of Forum Macao, Paulo Jorge Rodrigues do Espírito Santo and Casimiro de Jesus Pinto; the Consul General of Mozambique in Macao, Rafael Custódio Marques; the Consul General of Portugal in Macau and Hong Kong, Alexandre Leitão; the Dean of the Faculty of Business of City University of Macau, Prof. José Alves; the Head of the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship of University of Macau, Prof. Jerome Yen; theDean of the  Business School of Macau University of Science and Technology,Prof. Jacky So; the Programme Coordinator for the Master of Business Administration of University of Saint Joseph, Prof. Alexandre Lobo; the Head of the entrepreneurship course of Macao Institute for Tourism Studies, Prof. Fernando Lourenço; the Head of Research of the United Nations University Institute in Macau, Prof. Serge Stinckwich; the President of Macau Sino-Lusophone Platform for Sustainable Development Association, Alexandra Lemos; and the 929 Challenge Coordinator, Marco Duarte Rizzolio. Moreover, more than 50 representatives from Economic and Technological Development Bureau, Portugal Global – Trade & Investment Agency, sponsors and supporting organizations also attended the press conference.