The World Circular Economy Forum 2018 Boosts Asia’s Circular Economy

Finland and Japan are advancing the circular economy together in Asia. The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, which was named as the number one public-sector circular economy accelerator in the world in the Circulars Awards 2018 -event held in Davos, Switzerland, and the Ministry of the Environment of Japan are co-hosting the World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF) between 22 and 24 October in Yokohama, Japan. 


WCEF will present the world’s best circular economy solutions and will bring together key circular economy thinkers and doers from around the world.

The landmark event of the year will examine how businesses can seize new opportunities, gain a competitive advantage through circular economy solutions and how the circular economy contributes to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The WCEF’s co-organisers include the European Commission, the United Nations Environment Programme, and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The first WCEF was organised in Helsinki, Finland in 2017 and this year’s event is the second of its kind and the first WCEF to take place outside Europe. In 2018, the WCEF aims to further circular economy co-operation globally.

- The breakthrough of the circular economy in Asia is extremely important as a significant amount of global production and consumption takes place in Asia, says Mari Pantsar, Director of Carbon-Neutral Circular Economy at Sitra.

- That said, the actualisation of the sustainable economy model is critical for the future of our planet. The circular economy also offers a huge opportunity to create growth and jobs within the planet’s boundaries globally.

The EU has a crucial role to play in advancing the circular economy globally, and the World Circular Economy Forum works as global accelerator for the circular economy, supporting collaboration between organisations and the public and private sectors.

- Japan has been establishing its own circular economy strategy for over 20 years, and will publish the fourth version of the strategy soon. The World Circular Economy Forum offers a great platform to deliver the essence of this polished strategy to the world, says Masayoshi Kurisu from the Ministry of the Environment of Japan.

The WCEF looks ahead to the year 2050

The World Circular Economy Forum 2018 will examine the circular economy’s global status in the year 2050, and the impact of international co-operation. Topics that will be discussed at the forum include economic benefits and social equity of the circular economy, energy and climate solutions, circular trade, future transportation and circular solutions for reducing marine plastic waste. The WCEF will also highlight the story of how Japan has become one of the leading circular economy nations in the world.

The WCEF’s themes include laying a foundation for 2019, when Finland is due to hold the presidency of the EU Council (July to December 2019) and when Japan will host the G20 summit.

The WCEF is proud to have some of the world’s top business leaders, policymakers and researchers speaking at the 2018 event. The speakers include the Japanese Minister of the Environment, Masaharu Nakagawa, Finland’s Minister for Housing, Energy and the Environment, Kimmo Tiilikainen, the former Brazilian Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira, Co-Chair of the International Resource Panel of the United Nations Environment Programme, Janez Potočnik, and the President of Ishizaka Sangyo, Noriko Ishizaka.

The first World Circular Economy Forum in Helsinki, Finland, brought together 1,600 participants from nearly 100 countries. More than half of the participants represented businesses.

The circular economy and the World Circular Economy Forum

  • The circular economy is the new paradigm for business, which aims for economic growth through new sustainable business models. The circular economy could generate USD 4.5 trillion of additional economic output by 2030, according to new Accenture (NYSE: ACN) research that identifies circular business models that will help decouple economic growth and natural resource consumption while driving greater competitiveness.
  • The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra and the Ministry of the Environment of Japan are co-hosting the World Circular Economy Forum 2018 (WCEF) between 22 and 24 October in Yokohama, Japan. In June 2019, the World Circular Economy Forum will again be held in Helsinki.
  • The WCEF examines how businesses can seize new opportunities, gain a competitive advantage through circular economy solutions and how the circular economy contributes to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
  • The WCEF 2018’s sessions will be live streamed at . More information about digital participation can be found on the website closer to the event.
  • The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra was named the number one public-sector circular economy accelerator in the world when Sitra won the public-sector category of the Circulars Awards 2018 for its pioneering work to accelerate the world’s transition to a circular economy:


Events | 16.5.2018

Latest articles

It’s About “Time”

At Bentley Systems, we have been talking to our users, especially owners, and it has become clear that despite our collective best efforts, there is a gap in the market.  Owners need easy access to real-time, accurate, engineering information and they need tools that make it simple to keep engineering data up-to-date, especially those engaged in brownfield and revamp projects.  It takes too much time and effort to gather and verify the information they need to make decisions effectively. And for older plants that do not have 3D models, there is simply no visual way to verify and check information easily.

Partner Articles | 10.12.2018

Energy savings 4.0

We have all read about it: leak detection should be a top priority since, if no leak detection program has been implemented, leaks can account for 30 to 40% of consumed volume. So, why is this issue still on the table? Why is it difficult to change things in the field?

Asset Management | 10.12.2018

How to Choose an Air Compressor, According to Science – 8 Factors to Consider

Buying an air compressor, for the first time, can be challenging in many ways. There is a lot going on behind this power tool that offers faster and more efficient performance. Before we get to know about the details of an air compressor then, let’s understand how it works. How do air compressors work?

Applications | 10.12.2018

Maintenance 4.0 hype or game changer?

Last September Antwerp (Belgium) hosted the Euromaintenance 4.0 conference. With 1187 participants from 64 different countries, the European maintenance federation EFNMS and the organisers BEMAS (Belgian Maintenance Association) and can look back on a very successful initiative. The massive interest and very positive vibe that prevailed confirm that maintenance 4.0 is currently at the centre of attention. But is this really justified? Isn't the whole buzz surrounding the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) just a hype that will have faded in a year's time?

Cmms | 10.12.2018

8 Ways to Identify and Eliminate Noise Hazards in the Workplace

Occupational noise hazards are one of the most common workplace safety concerns. Our hearing is sensitive and it does not take much to temporarily impair or permanently damage it. 

HSE | 10.12.2018

Bacterial Bandages, Natural Dyes and Recycled Fibres: Aalto Brings Materials Revolution to Slush

New materials play an important role in sustainable development and combatting climate change. New uses for old materials can also be a major industrial opportunity: for example, the value of biomass from forests in Finland can be doubled if used for manufacturing products of higher added value.

R&D | 4.12.2018

Maintenance: A Necessary and Important Function in the Future

Euromaintenance 2016 will take place in Athens at the end of May. It is the ideal moment to reflect on maintenance in a European context. Euromaintenance is known as the summit for all involved in maintenance across Europe, it’s the place to be. The conference, with the support of the EFNMS, is the only commercially independent conference covering the topics we deal with in the maintenance world.

EFNMS | 20.5.2016