Dubai International Financial Centre Announces DIFC Week 2008

Dubai, 23 June 2008:The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) today announced that DIFC Week, its prestigious annual programme of conferences featuring the world's foremost financial and economic leaders, will be held from 23-26 November, 2008.

Under the theme Sustaining our Oasis of Prosperity in a Turbulent World, DIFC Week 2008 will be devoted to discussing regional growth prospects in the light of current global developments.

H.E. Dr. Omar Bin Sulaiman, Governor of DIFC said: '" Spurred by globalisation and reform, the Middle East region is enjoying very strong economic growth. However, as growth transforms the region's economy, we need to devise clear strategies to ensure our growth can be sustained andenhanced. DIFC Week provides a platform for thought leaders from the region and across the world to engage in a discussion on the critical issues that determine our region's future."

Nasser Al Shaali, CEO of DIFC Authority said: "DIFC Week brings together the financial industry's leading minds to discuss issues that will influence our region's prosperity at a time when the global economy is going through many challenges. As the world's fastest growing financial centre, the DIFC is proud to welcome regional business heads, together with their international counterparts, to experience and enjoy this unique series of events."

The week will start with DIFC's fourth anniversary celebrations followed by a golf tournament and art and cultural shows that ensure a relaxed start to the finance and business sessions.

The main focus of DIFC Week is a one-day Summit on 23 November and a two-day Forum from 24 to 25 November. Thought leaders and decision makers will share perspectives on wide-ranging topics at these events. Themes of discussion include: the regional macroeconomic outlook, foreign investment, business performance, family entrepreneurship, energy and women in business.

Closing the events for the week will be a Conference on 26 November titled: 'The Inside Track on Dubai', which will discuss the practicalities of establishing operations in Dubai. Many participants are expected to stay on for the international Dubai Rugby Sevens tournament, which will be held from 28 - 29 November.

To ensure its substantive relevance, the agenda for the Summit is being developed in consultation with DIFC stakeholders and organisations such as Tharawat, the Arab family business network.

Dr. Hischam El Agamy, Executive Director of the Tharawat Family Business Forum said: “Globalisation and growth have created unique opportunities and challenges for family businesses, which control over 90% of regional business activity. The future of the region will depend on how family businesses can navigate the changes brought on by globalisation and growth. The DIFC Summit brings together leading players to examine a whole range of issues facing family businesses in a changing, evolving economy.”

The event has received the support of leading financial companies. Deutsche Bank and Abraaj Capital were the first companies to announce their sponsorship of DIFC Week.

Ricardo Honegger, Chief Country Officer for the UAE at Deutsche Bank said: "Deutsche Bank is extremely proud of its endorsement of the DIFC Summit -a landmark event and the first of its kind in the region to bring together the foresight and experience of leading financial industry leaders in a unique and exclusive event. Deutsche Bank is looking forward to contributing to this event by capitalising on its global and regional expertise."

Arif Naqvi Vice Chairman and Group CEO of Abraaj Capital said, "Abraaj Capital's support is a natural evolution of our solid partnership with the DIFC - being the first pure private equity firm to be regulated by the DFSA. In addition, The Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA) region is poised to play a tremendous role in the global economy. This comes with responsibilities and opportunities, which the global financial leadership should assess together with the key players in the region."

Participation in the Summit will be by invitation only to ensure a high-quality environment for business networking. Professional moderators and interactive sessions will facilitate productive discussions.

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