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Nasser Saidi on the looming MENA water shortage crisis

Dr Nasser Saidi, Executive Director at the Hawkamah Institute for Corporate Governance and former Chief Economist at the Dubai International Finance Centre, penned a compelling op-ed in The National earlier this week on the water shortage crisis in the MENA region. You can read the full article here. In brief:

  • Water shortage is a global problem, but it is particularly acute in the MENA region, which contains 6.3% of the world’s population but only 1.4% of the world’s renewable fresh water.
  • What’s worse is that the region is already using 75% of its available renewable water supplies due to rapidly increasing population, urbanisation and economic growth.
  • Another issue is that the desalination that does take place is costly, energy intensive and leads to environmental degradation because its mostly powered by fossil fuels.
  • The key is to wed renewable energy and desalination – in the MENA region, solar power looks like a promising solution.

For more information on how to book Nasser Saidi as a speaker for your conference or event, please contact Leo von Bülow-Quirk at or call 0044 (0) 20 7792 8000.

Nasser Saidi and Andrew Neil at the 8th Arabian Business Forum

The 8th Arabian Business Forum was held on May 21st in Dubai, where a number of speakers were chosen to discuss some of the major issues currently facing the Gulf economies. The event was hosted by the renowned British broadcaster, political commentator and ITP Chairman, Andrew Neil.

Former Chief Economist for the Dubai International Financial Centre, Nasser Saidi is an expert on Middle Eastern finance and economics; Arabian Business magazine said “there aren’t many more prominent experts than Dr Nasser Saidi.”

In his keynote speech Nasser suggested that for 2013 the non-oil sector will aid growth in the economy as oil prices plateau and even drop. He also discussed unemployment and its effects as well as the loans that the government are encouraging banks to give to new companies.

Click here to read more about the Forum

Hernando de Soto testifies to the US House Foreign Affair’s Committee

Peruvian pioneering development economist, Hernando de Soto spoke to the US House Foreign Affair’s Committee on “the economic roots of the Arab Spring”, May 21 2013.  At a hearing of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US House of Representatives entitled “The Call for Economic Liberty in the Arab World”, Hernando spent two hours presenting a prepared statement followed by a Q&A session.

He is the president of the Institute of Liberty and Democracy (ILD) which has worked in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region for more than 12 years. Hernando told the committee that while most policy makers in the US and Europe see the Arab world revolutions as a problem, he considers it as a solution to economic growth and a contribution to peace in a region. He also described the ILD’s  research  which had  found  that   MENA  economies  were  “in  the  midst  of  a  transition  from  a  pre-market  to  a  market   order  –  and  the  crucial  element  to  the  success  of  that  transition  was  giving  ordinary   people  easy  access  to  legal  property  rights.”

Click here to watch Hernando.

To find out more about Hernando de Soto, or to book him as a speaker for your conference or event, please contact Leo von Bülow-Quirk at or call 0044 (0) 20 7792 8000.



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