Discussion Panel

Discussion Panel

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Banking & Finance

1. The Big Picture: Investing Into Asia

Asia’s economic growth potential is superior compared to many developed economies following the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis of 2008. The ongoing mega-projects across Asia are evidence of renewed investor confidence in emerging markets. This is further augmented by other Asian countries in their ongoing drive for development and market-based reforms. Well positioned and vigilant; Investors and corporations alike, will be able to capitalise on Asia’s growth.
• Introducing GCC capital to Asian Markets to improve returns and minimise risk
• Recognising the strength of government linked corporations and ways to invest through them in Malaysia.
• Investing in Singaporean clean technology, digital media and biomedical innovation.
• Building effective public private partnerships with Indonesian corporations.
• Investigating Thailand’s liberalised investment policy and the nations associated infrastructure projects.

2. Fundamentals of Islamic Finance

The Islamic Finance Market is estimated to be approximately USD 1.3 trillion dollars. With such a vast amount of available capital in the Islamic Financial environment, investors from all across the world are carefully observing the growth of this industry that has sound nancial regulations governing investments. The Global Financial Crisis of 2008 has increased the attractiveness of Islamic Finance.

Developing the 1.3 Trillion Dollar Sukuk market in the GCC
• Developing a dedicated stock exchange and trading platform to increase Islamic financial transactions.
• Building on the full spectrum of Islamic fundamentals to support financial product trading and platform development.
• Improving Islamic financial liquidity in the bond market by strategic currency swap management.
• Employing Islamic finance as a catalyst for cross-border investments between South East Asia, Australia, China and the GCC.

Trading platforms in Islamic Finance
• Building innovative financial products to increase trading on Is lamic platforms.
• Identifying suitable commodities to trade via Islamic platforms.

Asset Management in Islamic Finance
• Enabling GCC Investors to issue Bonds in local market denominations with minimal risk.
• Building an Islamic Mega Bank to endorse international Shariah Compliant financial products that will increase liquidity in Islamic nancial markets.

3. Building the Asset Management Industry within the GCC

Following the aftermath of the global nancial crisis of 2008, the nancial services industry has shown signs of maturity and consolidation across the GCC. This industry has tremendous potential to transcend to the next level of sophistication across the region with ample liquidity. Private Equity will be instrumental in the development of the Asset management industry.
• Recognising the current levels of diversification within the Ass et Management Industry in the GCC.
• Tracking unique growth drivers that will affect the industry.
• Developing the role of private equity and mutual funds and its related investment platforms to enable investments.

Food Security and Halal industry

4. Expanding the Halal Industry Beyond its Traditional Borders

The comprehensive development and concentrated attention towards the Halal food industry and the extensive application of innovative technologies and R&D throughout the halal supply chain are creating extensive growth opportunities and diversity within the industry. Coupled with commercialisation activity on a macro-economic scale, the halal industry is set to have a major impact on the whole food related supply-chain; specically more so for Muslim nations.
• Integrating the supply-chain within the halal industry.
• Boosting Customer Confidence through halal certification.
• Investigating Foreign Markets that have a halal demand.
• Collaborating to shorten new product development cycles.
• Building your brand through halal product strategy.

5. Securing the Agricultural Supply Chain to Contain Inflation

As the world’s population continues to expand at an unprecedented rate, the race to secure arable land is on as urbanization has taken a central role in enabling economic prosperity. Urban development competes with agricultural activity for access to large parcels of land suitable for development. As developed nations continue to enforce protectionism in an attempt to shield their agriculturalists from foreign competition; farming communities of developing countries continue to feel the direct effects of food price volatility.

• Redistributing surplus food from developed nations to eradicate hunger and poverty in emerging countries.
• Recognizing the impact of diverted agricultural crop producti on for energy purposes and its correlation to food price ination.
• Stabilizing food prices to support effective investment planning in agriculture.
• Reversing the decline in domestic and international funding towards agriculture to stimulate new investments.
• Developing farming capabilities and security through cross border investments.
• Building food security partnerships to counter inflation.

Transport & Infrastructure

6. The Qatar World Cup 2022: Public Private Partnerships Pivotal to GCC Infrastructure Development

The Qatar World Cup 2022: Public Private Partnerships Pivotal to GCC Infrastructure Development. The World Cup has been scheduled to take place in 2020 in Qatar. Being the most celebrated sporting event in the world, all infrastructure and transportation requirements will take quintessential precedence as Qatar continues with its urban development projects. The World Cup will offer investors an opportunity to have a hand in the development of Qatar.
• Is infrastructure a state-dominated business and it a viable option for GCC and foreign investors.
• Assessing the ability of Middle East capital markets to offer a range of access methods for investors.
• Considerations for investors before committing directly to projects in the Middle East.
• Evaluating the debt market as a tool for infrastructure investment.
• Risks and rewards of infrastructure private equity funds.

Green Investments & Technology

7. Boosting Portfolio Returns with Prudent Investments in Renewable Ventures

The potential and prospects for renewable technologies across the Middle East are exceptional taking into consideration the overall climate and sunlight accessibility which in itself ranks among the highest in the world. With oil prices hovering in the  USD 100 range and total chaos ensuing from the Japanese nuclear disaster; renewable energy will become an integral part of pan-Arab energy security. A young and growing Middle Eastern population will further burden energy demand as it is forecasted to almost double by 2020. The role of renewable technologies in the Arabian energy nexus is destined for a greater role in society, the economy as well as national security.

• Introducing renewable investments into your portfolio to gradually decouple from pure commodity extraction while gaining Alpha returns.
• Incorporating private equity into an investor portfolio and the value gained from these strategic alliances and co-investment partnerships.
• Vetting the most stable high yielding investment vehicles to ac cess commodities within the Middle East.
• Evaluating current smart-grid integration strategies to facilitate renewable energy development.
• Scrutinizing existing PPP frameworks on power generation and id entifying investment opportunity.

Real Estate

8.Maximising Returns through Investments in Asian Real Estate Markets

Property investment has emerged as a stable alternative asset class, but it remains difcult to access and is often beset by complex regulatory structures. The migration of capital from developed markets to emerging economies is a new and permanent trend that will gain further traction over the next decade. Regardless of the real estates market variations, there is one clear underlying trend, the proliferation of the REIT and the increase in the number of property stock listings. As a consequence Asian property funds are becoming a mainstay for vigilant investors.

• Identifying strong partners to provide accessibility and ‘eye s’ on the ground for international investors.
• Distinguishing between the characteristics of the North American property market and the Asian property market.
• Accelerating financing availability to support real estate development while maintaining a stable regulatory framework to govern credit control.


9. Empowering Higher Education: The Role of the Qatar Foundation and Qatar University

The role of the Qatar foundation and its education centre has improved exponentially. With such signicant improvements and an appetite for excellent education; to what extent can Asian academic institutions collaborate in the Qatari context? Malaysia has become one of the preferred international destinations for higher learning in recent times and this is evidenced by the increase in the amount of students who enrolled in the domestically located public and private academic institutions.

• Identifying the characteristics of Malaysian universities that have improved their international profile.
• Building industry-community collaboration frameworks to create research in niche area’s between Asia and the GCC.
• Expanding Education Initiatives to Maximise Human Capital Potential.


10. Modernising Healthcare: Qatar, Malaysia and Thailand as case studies

Qatar is on a mission to modernise its healthcare industry in a very big way. The country’s leading healthcare provider has embarked on a project to digitize the healthcare sector. Currently, Qatar trails the UAE in terms of medical tourism activity outside the region.

• Identifying Medical Requirements specific to Qatar’s populace.
• Recognising Asian excellence in healthcare and employing its st rategy across Qatar.
• Leveraging on the strength of the medical tourism industry to m aximise investor returns.
• Analysing the expectations of GCC medical tourists to provide a ppropriate services.