His Excellency Nasser Ahmed Alsowaidi, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development has attended today the inauguration of the 2012 Arab-German Family Businesses Forum in its fifth round. The Forum, which is to last for two days, aims at discussing means of promoting the role of family businesses in the economies of the region and the obstacles which hinder those businesses from contributing to the sustainable economic development process in those countries. The Forum also provides an opportunity for exchanging best practices and knowledge and exploring new grounds for joint ventures.
In his speech during the opening ceremony, H.E. Nasser Ahmed Alsowaidi said that Abu Dhabi is honored to host the fifth annual forum which was first launched in 2008 and became an ideal platform for exchanging best practices among owners of family businesses in the Middle East and their counterparts in the German-speaking European states. A large number of experts, academics, and owners of family businesses are taking part in this major event.
His Excellency noted that in the Middle East region, as well as in Germany, family businesses play a vital role in boosting the economies of the countries as they represent the main pillars on which the private sector rest, in the industrial, commercial, financing, investment, and tourist domains. This, in turn, speeds up the economic growth and contributes actively to its diversity.
H.E. Nasser Alsowaidi said that the UAE-based family businesses, like the other traditional companies, aim at making profit, but they are further distinguished by adopting various values, most important of which is the sense of social responsibility. “This promotes their leading role in achieving equilibrium within the single-family framework which reflects our culture and deep-rooted heritage” His Excellency said.
His Excellency also indicated that the world has become more complicated due to globalization, something which requires from the family businesses to continue their efforts to implant the culture of innovation and develop new ideas and products according to the best standards and state-of-the-art technologies. “This will lead to new markets that keep up with the latest developments in our world and will help overcome the obstacles and challenges which the regional and international variables have imposed on us.” His Excellency added.
At the end of his speech, the Chairman of the Department of Economic Development pointed out that the Forum provides a good opportunity to all the participants from the Middle East and Europe to hold discussions on the possibilities of establishing new organizations, developing innovative ideas, exchanging expertise, and stimulating creativity. He ended his speech wishing all participants to achieve success in realizing the objective of the Forum which aims at highlighting the available opportunities in business projects in the UAE, the Middle East region and EU countries particularly the German-speaking ones.
The Family Businesses Forum 2012 hosted by Abu Dhabi is organized by the Owners Forum and is supported by the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (DED) and the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) in cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ADCCI) and a number of family businesses in the UAE.
The Forum has attracted owners, chairmen and leaders of family businesses, as well as a number of investors and experts specialized in family business with the aim of exchanging knowledge and getting acquainted with the best practices in the Middle East and Europe.
The Forum, hosted by Abu Dhabi, is the fifth in a series of events held over the past years in a number of Arab countries. Experts from Harvard and Yale universities of the USA are participating in the Forum, in addition to 100 family businesses owners from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, along with 50 owners and chairmen of family businesses in the Middle East in addition to 50 businessmen and chairmen of family businesses in the UAE and GCC countries.