Dubai Group to organise first World Pension Forum in region

More than 80 participants from the US, as well as government officials and senior executives of leading UAE companies will address the Middle East’s first World Pension Forum (WPF), which will be held in Dubai on from November 17. Organised by diversified financial services company Dubai Group, WPF hosts various conferences around the world to help US pension fund managers make knowledgeable investment decisions and allocate funds to potential investment destinations. Titled “Pearls of the Gulf”, the forum will facilitate the development of long-term partnerships between the funds and the Middle East. The forum aims to offer insight into the new patterns of global trade and people flows, the expanded role of sovereign wealth, and the erection of first-class infrastructure. The event will also give UAE-based companies an opportunity to share their success stories. Soud Ba’alawy, Executive Chairman of Dubai Group, said: “Given the current scenario worldwide, this forum comes as a timely event and will offer key insights into our financial markets, particularly the role that this region is playing in the global economy. Organisations such as the World Pension Forum provide opportunities to foster long-term partnerships and open doors for business opportunities around the world. WPF pursues a shared vision with Dubai Group to bridge capital flows between the East and the West.” Philip Schaefer, President of the World Pension Forum, said: “We are thrilled to be bringing our delegation of institutional investors to the UAE for the first time. The region has shown what can be accomplished with dynamic, visionary leadership. We plan to return often.” Over the past few years, pension funds and other Western institutional investors have been eagerly exploring opportunities in the Middle East to capitalise on the region’s extraordinary growth story. In January 2008, The Economist reported that Morgan Stanley estimates pension funds worldwide hold more than $20 trillion (Dh70.4trn) in assets, the largest for any category of investor.