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The ‘third world’ meets in Dubai

The future of a regional population made up of 1.8 billion people, 31 countries and a combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP) estimated at US$1.5 trillion, will be tabled at this year’s Dubai Strategy Forum, between October 28-30, 2002. <br>

The future of a regional population made up of 1.8 billion people, 31 countries and a combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP) estimated at US$1.5 trillion, will be tabled at this year’s Dubai Strategy Forum, between October 28-30, 2002.

The Forum, now in its second year, will bring together government and business leaders, along with key representatives from academia, media and civil society, to engage in open dialogue, discussion and debate about the future of the region. This incorporates more than 30 countries across North and East Africa, Central and South Asia, the broader Middle East, including the Gulf States.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and UAE Minister of Defence, is scheduled to play a key role at the three-day forum - earmarked to attract almost 1,000 participants - standing firm in his opinion that regional growth must be achieved through regional alliances. “Our region is at a crossroads and we must realise that our fates are inexorably tied,” he said. “Through the partnership of government and business leaders, academia and the media a deliberate forward-looking approach to global issues that affect us all can be achieved.”

According to Mohammed Al Gergawi, chairman of Dubai Strategy Forum, the region embraced by the Forum represents more than one third of the world’s population. Speaking at a conference to announce the key partners at this year’s event, he said: “The region that is dubbed ‘the third world’ by many economists and media, actually houses one third of the world’s people. In so doing, it is showing its impact on a wide range of important global issues,” he said.

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