Marrakech Hosts Conference on Growth, Jobs & Inclusiveness in Arab World

The International Monetary Fund (IMF), Arab Monetary Fund (AMF), Arab Fund for Social and Economic Development (AFESD) and Government of Morocco will organize a high-level conference in Marrakesh, Jan. 29–30 to look into ways of promoting higher economic growth, job creation, and inclusiveness in the Arab World.

The conference, “Opportunity for All: Promoting Growth, Jobs, and Inclusiveness in the Arab World”, will bring together high-level policy makers, corporate executives, academics, youth, media and civil society representatives from countries in the Arab World and beyond to exchange their experiences, lessons and ideas on how to create millions of jobs by exploiting new sources and sectors of growth.

Building on the 2014 Amman conference “Building the Future” which highlighted the need for growth to generate jobs and for its benefits to be shared more widely, the 2018 conference aims to move discussions on inclusive growth in the Arab World from endorsement to implementation.

Key topics to be discussed at the conference will include: how to scale-up opportunities for women and youth by promoting entrepreneurship and innovation; embracing transparency and technology to unlock the region’s potential; and designing government policies that act as enablers of higher and more inclusive growth.

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, AFESD Director General Chairman of the Board Abdlatif Y. Al-Hamad, and AMF Director General Chairman of the Board Abdulrahman Al Hamidy will be among the conference speakers.

Agenda of the Marrakech conference includes debates on how to overcome impediments to growth and inclusiveness, promote entrepreneurship & innovation in the Arab World and create job opportunities by tapping into new sources and sectors of growth.

According to IMF chief Christine Lagarde, Morocco has remained a model of stability despite a challenging environment—the economic crisis in Europe, political transition in Arab countries, and more.

“Throughout all this, the economy has proved resilient, and serious reforms are underway”, she said.

In the Middle East and North Africa, more than 15 million people are currently unemployed. It is a phenomenon that touches all countries and, disproportionately so, people under 25.

At the Marrakech conference, senior policymakers, civil society representatives, private sector partners, and academics will debate the next phase of economic transformation for the Arab countries in transition.

“The private sector can play a significant role.
But it will only do so in an improved business environment through smarter regulations and more competition, through streamlining conditions for business entry, and through ensuring that small and medium-sized firms have adequate financing”, stressed the IMF managing Director.

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