The World Economic Forum’s Middle East and North Africa meeting will get underway at the Dead Sea, Jordan between 21 and 23 May, 2015.
The 16th meeting will be opened by H.M. King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein of Jordan and will see more than 900 business and political leaders and representatives of civil society, international organizations and youth, as well as the media from over 50 countries in attendance.
The focus of this year’s regional meeting will be the creation of a regional framework for prosperity and peace through public-private cooperation, with a special emphasis on the advancement of youth, maintaining policy reform momentum in countries such as Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco, as well as infrastructure, energy and investment partnerships with the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. The forum will also provide a platform to policymakers to hold high-level dialogues on the region’s security, humanitarian, governance and competitive goals.
Among the interesting sessions during the two-day meeting will be Dealing With Energy Disruptions, which will address dimensions such as the changing global energy mix, the deflation in oil prices and the impact of these disruptions on the economies of the region. Rethinking Syria will focus on how a consensus can be arrived at on Syria’s humanitarian imperative, given the intensifying refugee crisis that has led to 4 million people fleeing the country.
Apart from the country-focused sessions on Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Iraq, etc., the meeting will also host plenary sessions to debate sector-specific challenges in tourism, healthcare and renewable energy. Technology and its rapidly evolving role in spheres such as jobs, entrepreneurship and extremism will be debated in sessions such as The Future of Jobs and Addressing Digital Extremism. Food and water security are among the other key topics that will be on the agenda.
The meeting will be co-chaired by Gordon Brown, Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom; Omar K. Alghanim, CEO, Alghanim Industries Kuwait; Bodour Al Qasimi, Chairperson, Sharjah Investment and Development Authority – Shurooq; Suma Chakrabarti, President, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD); and John Rice, Vice-Chairman, GE.