Dubai Joins Other Global Financial Centres in Hosting SunGard City Days Event



Emerging market financial centres such as DIFC will contribute to an increasingly multilateral global financial system, DIFC Authority CEO Abdulla Mohammed Al Awar says during keynote address

Dubai yesterday joined 12 other global financial centres in hosting the SunGard Dubai City Day conference, which explored the question, “What Happens Next?” and featured a keynote address by Abdulla Mohammed Al Awar, Chief Executive Officer of the Dubai International Financial Centre Authority.

During his address at the event, organised by SunGard Financial Systems Middle East, Al Awar said that the increasingly multilateral international financial system and the shifting east of the global economic centre of gravity will lift up new financial centres to the level of London and New York.

Following Al Awar’s keynote address, the conference split into five parallel tracks covering “What Happens Next?” in the areas of trading & risk, banking, corporate liquidity management, asset management in the Middle East, and risk management. Each track included a number of panel discussions, Q&A sessions and presentations on the breakout topic, giving attendees an opportunity to focus deeply on their area of interest.

Other participants included a number of SunGard executives, and senior bankers, lawyers and consultants from Al Rajhi Bank, Bank Saudi Fransi, CCL Compliance Ltd, Cedar Management Consultancy, Commercial Bank of Dubai, DIFC Authority, Emirates NBD Bank, Ernst & Young, Gulfmena Alternative Investments, Investit, King & Spaulding, NASDAQ Dubai, ODL Securities LLC, Saffar Group and Shuaa Securities.

More than 200 financial industry professionals attended the SunGard Dubai City Day conference, the final in a series of 13 events held during 2009 in leading financial centres such as Beijing, London, Mumbai, New York, Singapore and Zurich.

Al Awar said in his keynote address, “Emerging financial centres like DIFC will continue to grow in importance as the regions and markets that they serve become increasingly wealthy, sophisticated and significant to the global financial system.”

Wissam Khoury, Managing Director of SunGard Middle East, said, “We recognise that today we need to strike the right balance of pursuing growth opportunities in a very dynamic region while being cautious in how we manage a business in a market still addressing the effects of a stronger regulatory regime.”

Added Khoury, who leads SunGard’s regional operations from offices in DIFC, “Given the increasingly significant role that the Middle East region plays in the global financial system, we are pleased that the Dubai concludes this year’s City Days.”

The conference was an example of comments made just days earlier by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, when he said that the UAE will continue to work to be a place that encourages and foster meetings and summits of regional and international organisations.

SunGard Middle East has its regional headquarters in the DIFC, from where it serves 70 financial institution clients.

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