Tuesday 13, February 2018 by Jessica Combes

Arab TIPOs convene to strengthen intra-regional collaboration


Trade and investment promotion organisations (TIPOs) from nine Arab countries will meet in Dubai on 13 and 14 February, for the first official meeting of the Arab Countries Trade and Investment Organisations Network (ACTION). 

The meeting will be hosted by Dubai Exports, the export promotion agency of Dubai Economy, and organised by the International Trade Centre (ITC). 

The co-operation platform, founded in 2016 with support from the Aid for Trade Initiative for Arab States (AfTIAS), is a joint initiative of TIPOs to accelerate economic integration and regional trade among Arab countries. ACTION aims to strengthen national trade promotion efforts and generate new business opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises in Arab countries.  

“Through the ACTION platform we are strengthening the connection between policymakers and the private sector. The platform will help facilitate regional business linkages, improve information exchange, provide better trade promotion services and establish a more conducive business environment. We aim for ACTION to ensure that the voice of the private sector in the Arab countries is better heard and that it becomes a vehicle for stronger intra-regional trade cooperation,” said ITC Executive Director, Arancha González. 

During the two-day inaugural event, heads and senior representatives of the Arab national TIPOs will formalise the establishment of the network, elect its management bodies and agree on a work plan for the coming 12 months. 

“Dubai is an ideal take-off point for ACTION as the city thrives on linking regional as well as international trade and promoting global idea exchange. The two-day meeting will provide delegates an insight into the opportunities continuously offered by Dubai for regional trade and particularly for small and medium enterprises to be part of global value chains,” commented Engineer Saad Al Awadi, CEO of Dubai Exports.  

Reinforced co-operation between TIPOs is seen as an essential step towards achieving the ambitions of Arab countries to simplify, diversify and enhance trade. Working together, TIPOs can become the platform that business needs to unleash their potential by promoting the sharing of information and expertise, joint projects and an improved regional business environment. 

“TIPOs are key partners in all ITFC Trade Promotion activities and programmes; ITFC is firmly determined to continue to move forward and do its best to enhance their role. Moreover, ITFC is keen to enable the TIPOs to integrate into the global trade system, to disseminate awareness of the importance of the SMEs among Government Institutions and other relevant bodies through the introduction of initiatives and support programmes,” added Eng. Hani Salem Sonbol, CEO ITFC during his remarks.

During the meeting, the International Trade Centre, which has been supporting the creation of ACTION, will present insights from the ‘Unleashing export opportunities for greater regional integration among Arab States’, a recent study on the untapped trade opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa region as well as facilitate the development of the work plan.



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