NEW YORK – April 4, 2017 – His Excellency Majid Al-Suwaidi, United Arab Emirates Consul General in New York delivered a keynote presentation at the 6th Annual Wharton Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Conference on March 31, hosted by The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
The conference, titled "Region Under Transformation: The Future of MENA," gathered MENA leaders, investors and entrepreneurs driving change in the region. Consul General's Al-Suwaidi's presentation focused on the UAE’s 45-year journey to economic success.
“According to the World Bank, the UAE’s GDP increased from $100 billion in 2000 to $370 billion in 2015,” Consul General Al-Suwaidi said during the conference. “This rapid growth reflects the UAE’s economic diversification strategy to reduce our reliance on oil and transform the UAE to a knowledge-based economy. Today, over 60 percent of our GDP is from non-oil sectors.”
Consul General Al-Suwaidi also discussed other driving factors of the UAE’s success, including the country’s visionary leadership, rule of law and public trust in government, open markets and fair competition, tourism, world-class educational programs, and promotion of inclusion and tolerance.
“In the UAE, the economy is thriving and over 200 nationalities live and work peacefully together,” Consul General Al-Suwaidi said. “Additionally, women hold key cabinet posts and continue to be at the forefront of economic and social change.”
The conference covered a range of MENA-related topics such as entrepreneurship, venture capital and healthcare, and took place on The Wharton School’s campus in Philadelphia.