Biotechnology and Life Sciences Forum BioAsia 2021, which was the 18th edition in the annual series and held virtually for the first time, saw record attendance.
“It saw the participation of around 31,450 delegates from 72 countries. We never had this kind of attendance. The virtual platform really helped us to reach different countries and stakeholder groups. By and large, the feedback has been very positive,” Industries and IT Secretary Jayesh Ranjan said during the closing session of the two-day event organised by Telangana government.
Barring the inaugural session on Monday, all the sessions were conducted virtually. Hoping for the event to be held in-person next year, the senior official said the record attendance came about even as the camaraderie that is evident when such events are conducted in-person and the opportunity for the participants to network were missing.
The organisers had decided against restricting the conference to Life Sciences professionals, and allowed free access to others too, given the theme of the event ‘Moving The Needle’ was contextual in the scenario prevailing amid the pandemic. The sessions deliberated on the current situation of vaccines, the impact of COVID-19, healthcare services and the way forward.
On Tuesday, the Special Award of the Federation of Asian Biotech Associations (FABA) was presented to Balram Bhargava, Director-General of the Indian Council of Medical Research and Secretary to Centre’s Department of Health Research for his contributions to medicine and healthcare.
CEO of BioAsia and Director Life Sciences of Telangana government Shakthi Nagappan said, “Despite the pandemic, we strived to ensure that the 17 years long legacy of BioAsia continues. The first virtual BioAsia was well received by the global community due to our strong focus on the pandemic and the stellar speaker line-up.”
It has been decided to make the deliberations of BioAsia available for public viewing on BioAsia YouTube channel, the release said.