The Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI) said Thursday that it would hold "Bio Korea 2020" as the first online virtual convention next week in consideration of the Covid-19 pandemic.
KHIDI Director Kwon Deok-cheol said that the institute is planning to hold the annual event on and off-line from next year based on this year's experiences.
|Korea Health Industry Development Institute Director Kwon Deok-cheol speaks at a news conference to open “Bio Korea 2020” at the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry.|
"Off-line event has the advantage of receiving an immediate response from the participants, but we decided that it was practically impossible to hold in a conventional way due to the Covid-19,” Kwon said. “Considering the nation's strength in information and communications technology, we came up with an innovative online exhibition.”
While many international conferences canceled amid the pandemic, the KHIDI decided to prepare an online version of its annual Bio Korea 2020 in mid-March. Five hundred companies from 30 countries, including the United States, Australia, and Italy, which were sharply hit by Covid-19, will join the online event.
The convention, which runs from May 18 to 23, consists of 5 sessions -- conference, investment fair, business forum, company exhibition, and job fair. Bio Korea 2020 also prepared a special session for the Covid-19.
|An image of the online “Bio Korea 2020” convention|
KHIDI used 360-degree virtual reality technology for the convention and made the product digitized through three-dimensional (3D) scanning so that the attendees can view products from all directions. It also used a 3D modeling animation technique to display technologies.
Beginning with the keynote speech by International Vaccine Institute Director-General Jerome Kim on Monday, the event will deal with the current status of Covid-19 test kit development and export on the next day. It will introduce the trend of developing treatments for the new coronavirus on Wednesday and address the cases of vaccine development and cooperation on Thursday.
The conference will cover various topics, such as antibodies, artificial intelligence, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, vaccines, Alzheimer's, bio-intellectual property, regenerative medicine, and patient-generated health data.
Twenty-four companies in eight healthcare fields will exhibit their products online, and 30 companies plan to employ about 150 people.
KHIDI said it has reduced the participation fee to a quarter of previous off-line events and prepared the online server to hold about 4,000 concurrent accesses.
"Preparing for the first online exhibition has cost about 20 percent more than in previous years. However, we believe the event was worth paying additional expense as it would help reduce financial burdens on companies caused by the Covid-19 and create jobs and develop the industry," Kwon said.
Unlike the previous off-line conference, the KHIDI will provide the platform used at the convention to companies after the event ends. The institute said it hopes that the companies would use the platform to promote and license their products in the future.
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