Jordan to host WEF Mena summit
Geneva, September 25, 2012
Jordan said it will be hosting the high-profile World Economic Forum (WEF) on Middle East and North Africa in May next year. The meeting will convene over 1,000 participants from government, business, civil society and academia.
The announcement was made by King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein of Jordan and WEF founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab who met today in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.
The duo later signed a MoU to mark the official start of preparations for the 2013 World Economic Forum on Mena to be held at the Dead Sea from May 24 to 26.
King Abdullah II said the on-going developments in the region warrant renewed efforts to shape the new regional context to positively support socio-economic development and address youth issues, especially youth unemployment; and to “answer our young people’s cry for a normal future, in dignity and opportunity, in view of all the developments and challenges taking place in our Mena region.”
According to Schwab, the upcoming forum will take a practical look at the policies and business strategies that are necessary to support the aspirations of the region’s economies.
In the new Mena context, decision-makers across the region are responding to the challenge of translating the current societal momentum into concrete positive outcomes for all citizens.
This situation represents a key opportunity for industry, government and civil society to jointly make historic gains in crucial areas, including youth unemployment, transparency, income disparity reduction, private sector development and infrastructure, he added.
At the same time, the deep economic slowdown in Europe and continuous geopolitical uncertainty in the Levant underscore the need for enhanced regional cooperation as well as the importance of relations with emerging markets.
Miroslav Dusek, the WEF Mena director and head said, "Building on Jordan’s role in the region and internationally, the aim of 2013 meeting is to drive the dialogue needed to overcome long-standing fault lines and foster the spirit of multistakeholder partnerships that are so essential for ensuring peace and security at this time of fundamental change.”
Through a variety of formats, the meeting will address the following questions:
What national policies and regional mechanisms need to be in place to safeguard the prosperity of economies facing resource scarcity and rapid population growth? What are the proven best practices for creating the conditions for youth-driven entrepreneurial growth?
How can the new governments in North Africa respond to public expectations while also managing sustainable economic transitions?
What are the implications of the situation in Syria for interfaith and intercommunal relations in the Mena?
“We are proud to host the WEF for the seventh time in Jordan, and look forward to playing a very active role in helping achieve its goals of enhancing regional co-operation and partnerships,” remarked Nasser Al Lozi, the chairman of the King Abdullah II Fund for Development (KAFD), Jordan.-TradeArabia News Service