September 23, 2008, Beijing – Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has joined the World Bank in supporting innovative projects initiated by civil society organizations (CSOs) in China through a Wal-Mart Sustainability Award created in the China Development Marketplace. Wal-Mart is one of the world's largest retail companies with more than 7,000 stores worldwide. In keeping with its global commitment to supporting sustainable development, Wal-Mart will focus its contribution on projects designed to improve environmental protection, natural resources management, energy conservation and emission reduction.
For the special award for post-earthquake recovery projects created through the contribution from the Ticketmaster and Music for Relief, 105 project proposals were received. The proposals are undergoing review and evaluation. Finalists are expected to be announced towards the end of September and will be invited to Beijing with other finalists for the China DM fair and final competition on October 21-22.
The final events of the 2nd China DM will be held in Beijing on October 21-22. The finalists will be invited to present their projects at a public exhibition to be held at the China World Exhibition Center and be interviewed by a jury composed of the sponsors, donors and other partners. 40-50 winners will be selected by the jury for funding, and announced at a grand award ceremony attended by government officials, donors, media and CSO representatives.
Development Marketplace (DM) is an initiative of the World Bank aiming to identify and support innovative bottom-up development ideas that deliver results, which can then be expanded or replicated in the country. The China DM is jointly sponsored by the World Bank, Ministry of Civil Affairs and State Council Leading Group Office for Poverty Alleviation to support grassroots innovations by civil society organizations (CSO) for a harmonious society. Our donors and partners so far include the Narada Foundation, Red Avenue Chemical Co., China Social Entrepreneur Foundation, KPMG, Wal-Mart, Ticketmaster and Music for Relief, Norwegian Embassy, U.K.Department for International Development, Swedish International Development Agency and Ford Foundation.
About Wal-Mart in China
Wal-Mart entered the Chinese market and opened its first store in Shenzhen in 1996. Wal-Mart's Global Procurement sourcing operation has been headquartered in Shenzhen in 2002. Currently Wal-Mart operates three store formats in China including Supercenters, Sam's Clubs and Neighborhood Markets. It also holds a 35% stake in Trust-Mart. Wal-Mart has donated funds and in-kind support worth more than RMB57 million to local charity and welfare organizations over the past twelve years, and has won awards such as "Best Employer", "Best Community Involvement", "Supplier Satisfaction Recognition" and "Most Admired Company".