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EBRD Business Forum 2017 for the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean Region

  • 14 Nov 2017
  • Cairo, Egypt
  • EBRD
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SEMED Business Forum | 14 November 2017 | Cairo, Egypt

The EBRD is organising its second Business Forum for the southern and eastern Mediterranean (SEMED) region: Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, and the West Bank and Gaza.The theme of the event will be “Investing for Sustainable Growth”.

The Forum will take place at the Conrad Hotel in Cairo on 14 November 2017, and has been organised in close cooperation with the Ministry of Investment and International Cooperation of Egypt.

This one-day event will bring together key policy-makers, government officials, investors and prominent business people to discuss the business outlook in the region, and to consider the obstacles impeding an increase in foreign investment.

EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti will open the forum together with Sahar Nasr, Minister of International Cooperation and EBRD Governor of Egypt. This will be followed by a discussion with the EBRD governors and alternate governors from the SEMED countries, Imad Najib Fakhoury, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation of Jordan; Zied Ladhari, Minister of Development, Investment and International Cooperation of Tunisia; Alain Bifani, Director General, Ministry of Finance of Lebanon and EBRD Alternate Governor; Faouzia Zaaboul,  Director of Treasury, Ministry of Finance of Morocco and EBRD Alternate Governor, as well as Azzam Shawwa, Governor of the Palestinian Monetary Authority and representative of the West Bank and Gaza.

The opening session will be dedicated to investment opportunities and economic prospects for the region and will prepare the ground for a series of expert discussions on the challenges and potential of four specific economic sectors: sustainable energy, agribusiness, infrastructure and industry. The forum will provide ample opportunity for participants to network and learn more about EBRD activities across the region, including trade finance and small business support.

Register for the event

For more information email:

We look forward to seeing you in Cairo in November.

12:00 Registration 
Conrad Foyer

13:30 - 14:45

Opening Address followed by the High Level Discussion Panel on the Economic Prospects of the Region 
Event Room Conrad A & B

14:45 - 15:15

Networking coffee break 
Conrad Foyer

15:15 - 16:00



Panel 1

Food and Agribusiness Value Chains
Event Room Conrad C

Panel 2

Sustainable Energy
Nile Ballroom

16:15 - 17:00

Panel 3

Infrastructure Sustainability through Commercialisation and Inclusion
Event Room Conrad C

Panel 4

Manufacturing and Services
Nile Ballroom

17:00 - 18:30

Networking Reception and Remarks by the SEMED Managing Director, Janet Heckman

17:45 - 18:30

Presentation of investment opportunities in Suez Canal Economic Zone by SCZ

Event Room Conrad A & B


Event  Room Conrad A & B


Jonathan Charles, Managing Director, Communications, EBRD

Economic Presentation:

Sergei Guriev, Chief Economist, EBRD


Suma Chakrabarti, EBRD President

Sahar Nasr, Minister of International Cooperation – Egypt

Imad Najib Fakhoury, Minister of Planning & International Cooperation – Jordan

Alain Bifani,  Director General, Ministry of Finance – Lebanon

Faouzia Zaaboul, Director of Treasury, Ministry of Finance – Morocco

Zied Ladhari, Minister for Investment, Development & International Cooperation – Tunisia

Azzam Shawwa, Governor of the Palestinian Monetary Authority

The panel discussion will revolve around questions relating to sustainability within the food sector in the SEMED region. It will look at the competitiveness of local production versus imports, especially in areas where there is little or no government protection.  Do issues relating to sustainability and environmentally sound practices make good business sense?  To what degree does strengthening corporate governance matter in this context?  These and other questions will be considered. 


Jonathan Charles, Managing Director, Communications, EBRD


Tamer El-Raghy, Head of Private Equity, Africa Agriculture and Food, responsAbility Investments AG

Mohamed Hamdy, Head of Mergers & Acquisition for Savola Foods Company

Seif Thabet, CEO, Juhayna

Ahmed El Alfi, CEO, Sawari Ventures

The SEMED region is at the forefront of the revolution that has made renewable energy the fastest growing segment of the power sector in recent years. Rapidly falling prices, growing electricity demand and outstanding wind and solar resources mean that the SEMED countries have the opportunity, which they are increasingly seizing, to meet their energy needs with a clean, reliable and affordable source of power. A panel of leading policy-makers and investors will discuss these developments and look ahead to the scale of the opportunity, as well as the potential for disruptive technologies such as storage and smart grids.


Nandita Parshad, Managing Director, Energy & Natural Resources, EBRD


Bader Al Lamki, Executive Director, Masdar Clean Energy

Alain Ebobissé, CEO, Africa50

Marie-Astrid De Montmarin, Area Manager Middle East Africa, EDF Energies Nouvelles

Mikkel Tørud, CFO, Scatec Solar

Ahmed El Sewedy, President and Chief Executive Officer, ELSEWEDY ELECTRIC S.A.E.

The SEMED countries face an acute challenge: To improve their existing infrastructure while simultaneously expanding it as populations grow. The policy-makers and practitioners on this panel will consider how transport and urban infrastructure can be made sustainable from an environmental and financial perspective. Panellists will also comment on the economic benefits that can be derived from more inclusive infrastructure, which addresses the needs of all potential users while reaching out to less developed regions.


Jean-Patrick Marquet, Managing Director, Infrastructure, EBRD


Diego Escalona-Paturel, Head of Cooperation, EU Delegation to Egypt.

Khaled Farouk, Vice Chairman for Infrastructure, Egyptian National Railways

Private firms of all sizes in the manufacturing and services sector are the source of economic growth and employment. Attracting equity and debt capital from local or foreign sources is a challenge in a global, competitive environment. In addition to financing, these sectors would also benefit from the Bank’s expertise in privatisations, project finance and energy efficiency. A panel of leading entrepreneurs from the region will focus on opportunities for domestic and export markets, as well their experience with the Bank.


Frederic Lucenet, Director, Head of Manufacturing & Services, EBRD


Basil El-Baz, Chairman and CEO, Carbon Holdings

 Ahmed El Sewedy, President and Chief Executive Officer, ELSEWEDY ELECTRIC S.A.E. 

Mohsen Mahgoub, Chairman, IBN Sina Pharma

Carlos Emilio Gonzalez, CEO, CEMEX Egypt

The Conrad Cairo is pleased to offer a preferential hotel room rate to the SEMED Business Forum participants via the link below:

Conrad Cairo Reservation Link

Please note the link expires on Monday 06 November, and rooms at this special rate will be subject to availability.

Should you encounter any difficulty with your booking at the hotel, an email should be sent to:


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