Summit is a huge global affair

San Francisco Chronicle
Tuesday, June 8, 2004

Summit is a huge global affair

Jan Sandred, Chronicle Staff Writer

It’s not only the largest biotechnology gathering ever, but also the most
international. Fifty-nine countries are represented at this week’s BIO 2004
International Convention in San Francisco.

Nearly half of those countries are visiting with official delegations with
federal-level ministers of science and technology, trade, and economics.

In addition to Americans, the largest delegations are from Australia,
Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Russia, Sweden,
Switzerland, Taiwan and Britain. Russia alone sent more than 65 senior
scientists and project managers.

There are 29 international pavilions on the exhibit floor with many times
more companies. For example, the Swedish pavilion in the North Hall of the
Moscone Convention Center features 14 biotech companies and organizations.

Countries participating for the first time include Algeria, Armenia, Ivory
Coast, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Peru, Romania, Slovenia, Uganda, Ukraine and

China, Japan and New Zealand all sent significantly more representatives
than in past years, in some cases doubling the numbers from last year, when
the convention was in Washington, D.C.

“Biotechnology is a global enterprise, thanks to solutions that now touch
the daily lives of millions in health care, the environment and
agriculture,” said Carl Feldbaum, president of the Biotechnology Industry
Organization, the meeting’s sponsor. “Our convention fully reflects the
international reach of this industry.”

E-mail Jan Sandred at [email protected].