*Global govt leaders to participate in the inaugural virtual event
*Forum agenda to focus on economy and post-pandemic world
*Spotlight on Qatar's efforts to lead economic growth, achieve development goals
Under the patronage of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, the activities of the first edition of the three-day Qatar Economic Forum will start Monday via videoconferencing.
His Highness the Amir will deliver a speech at the opening session of the forum, which is held in co-operation with Bloomberg, under the theme "Reimagining the World."
Global government leaders participating in the inaugural virtual event include Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo; UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson; Rwanda President Paul Kagame; South African President Cyril Ramaphosa; Senegalese President Macky Sall and Armenian President Armen Sarkissian, in addition to more than 100 speakers from around the world.
The event welcomes a global delegation of more than 2,000 government leaders, chief executives, influential voices and decision-makers in the fields of finance, economics, investment, technology, energy, education, sports and climate in an effort to identify opportunities, present solutions and rethink the global economic landscape through the lens of the Middle East.
The forum agenda will be centred around six main pillars over three days: "Technology Advanced" takes a closer look at permanent changes to the human-technology nexus; "A Sustainable World" will explore the intersection of capitalism and climate; "Markets and Investing" poses the question of whether investors, in their inexorable pursuit of growth opportunities, can shape a more resilient global economy; "Power and Trade Flows" gathers global power brokers to share their vision of the road ahead; "The Changing Consumer" examines the future of commerce; and "A More Inclusive World" will offer ideas for healing fissures in a post-pandemic society.
The forum aims to prepare plans that support the growth of the global economy during the post-pandemic phase and to benefit from the strategic location of Qatar, which is one of the most important points of connection between the East, the West and Africa regions to discuss ways to enhance international co-operation and communication to develop and support economic opportunities.
It also sheds light on Qatar's efforts to lead economic growth, achieve comprehensive development goals, and consolidate its leading position as one of the most important investment destinations regionally and globally.
The forum coincides with the success of the Qatari economy as it reaches the recovery stage more than a year after the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and its spread throughout the world in a way that prompted most countries of the world to take strict preventive measures that reached the point of closing economies and even closing countries completely or almost completely in some cases.
Qatar, and other countries of the world, had implemented strict preventive measures against the pandemic to protect society and the economy since the beginning of April 2020, and these steps contributed to reaching, during March 2021, a point closest to pre-pandemic levels, which imposed a new reality on the world, as the pandemic is described as one of the biggest challenges of the 21st century that caused losses of up to $10tn to the global economy.
The forum acquires its importance from its agenda, participants and timing.
It affirms Qatar's keenness to play its global role to face the Covid-19 repercussions and to come up with a unified position and practical and global steps to reach the global economic recovery.
It also confirms that Doha will remain the capital of important global meetings and a centre for making decisions and positive steps that the world and its economy await.
The distinguished and high-level global participation in the work of the forum reflects that the decisions and expected results will be at the level of the challenges and ambitions.
The great participation of African leaders in the forum shows the strength of the bet on Africa and its capabilities and potentials for the future of the international economy, placing it in its rightful place in future strategic studies.
The events of the Qatar Economic Forum and its agenda show Qatar's leading role, and that Doha is not only concerned about its own and local issues, but has a wider and more comprehensive view of international issues, interests, ambitions and contemporary challenges.
The forum constitutes good evidence of Qatar's efforts during the period of global economic recovery, as well as its keenness to exclusively be one of the initiators and first seekers of moving the international power and mobilising its energies, to confront the pandemic and pave the way to redirect the global economy to its previous tracks, successes and usual rates.
The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the fragility of the development systems prevailing all over the world, which requires mobilising human energies, competencies and capabilities, and natural, industrial, scientific and economic capabilities, to formulate a comprehensive approach based in its essence on international cooperation and solidarity, given that the next stage will not be easy economically and financially for any of the countries involved in the global economy, especially because the desired economic recovery can only be achieved by opening broader horizons for co-operation and building a better future for all nations and peoples at all levels.
The forum, which will readdress the global economic scene from the Middle East perspective, will hold seven sessions that will include a number of round tables, the participants' speeches and discussions about the latest and most prominent developments and economic axes of today's world, including leadership in the post-pandemic world, the digital future and the role that business can play to create a more just future for all, and the need for a new economic plan and restructuring the global economy.
The sessions of the forum will also address the future of vaccines in Africa, advanced technology, cyber risks and cybersecurity, the future of banking services supported by financial technology, the facts of global adoption of cryptocurrency, geopolitical alliances and trade relations, as well as the upgrading of global trade to pre-virus levels and the future of the rules-based global trading system, the development of Gulf sovereign wealth funds and their role in promoting economic recovery in the region, global challenges -from the pandemic to climate change- and economic regions and their role to revitalise globalisation, in addition to other significant topics.
The speeches and discussions of the participants will address topics that include renewable energy, virtual money and the transition to a new energy economy, electric digital mobility, industry and society's readiness for the new mobility revolution, green recovery and the future of the planet and humans, in addition to the digital future of sports, the role of the Internet with future health emergencies, millennial consumers as the largest purchasing power in the world today, real estate and the virtual world, and the economics of the environment and public health.
The discussions will also address topics, such as the future of travel and tourism after the pandemic has put millions of jobs and billions of dollars at stake, food security, hunger in a world of plenty, the future of global communications, making use of artificial intelligence in future industrialisation, as well as the continuous differences in health, access to education and human rights in different regions of the world and their impact on the efforts made to reform the global economy, women's role after the pandemic and the challenges they face in terms of work and wages, in addition to the transformative power of sport and how the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will create a lasting legacy for the world and build a better tomorrow for youth and future generations.