AmCham MENA Regional Council’s annual forum is scheduled to take place from 15 to 16 March. It will be hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce Bahrain (AmCham Bahrain). The forum, supported by the US Chamber of Commerce, will be organised in close collaboration with AmCham Egypt. The regional secretariat of the AmCham MENA Council aims to promote the expansion of trade and investment between the markets of the MENA region and the United States and will focus this year on the role of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in unlocking the economic potential of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
According to the press release, the forum will address various topics, like “SMEs as key drivers of economic development in the MENA region;” “The regional SMEs ecosystem: a fresh look at thriving techniques;” “SMEs financing opportunities and export support programs;” and strategies for “the integration of regional SMEs into the supply chain of US and multinational companies in the region.”
Moreover, the forum’s top priority will be the delivery of tangible results for attending companies by connecting them directly with potential partners, investors, and clients. Additionally, it is important to swiftly scale up international investment, trade, and business engagement through a series of focused strategy discussions, business to business (B2B) matchmaking and workshops.
Mr. Qays H. Zu’bi, president of AmCham Bahrain and chairman of the AmCham MENA Council, said, “for more than 12 years, the forum has excelled at bringing together business leaders, associations, and government representatives to create opportunities for new partnerships, expansion of markets, and growth of overall business. We are proud to have developed a strong program for the upcoming forum in March—one that we are confident can help attending companies meet their business objectives and growth potential.” The importance of SMEs cannot be emphasised enough in terms of GDP contribution and job creation, especially in emerging economies, such as the ones of the MENA region. Amcham MENA is advocating for a more friendly business environment to support SMEs growth, said Anis Aclimandos, president of AmCham Egypt and the regional secretariat of the AmCham MENA Council.
The forum is expected to be attended by high-level delegations of business leaders and decision and policy makers from the US and MENA governments, multilateral financing institutions supporting SMEs development in the region, as well as key players from the regional SMEs and entrepreneurship scene.
Furthermore, regarding the private sector contribution, the event will feature representation from AmCham MENA Council’s members from the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, and Tunisia, in addition to representatives from other regional US business councils and a broad range of international and regional business associations.