Bahrain Productivity Conference
The Labour Fund-Economic Development Board (EDB), in partnership with the Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI), held the "Bahrain Productivity Improvement Conference", at the Radisson SAS hotel, under the patronage of H.E. Dr. Essam Fakhro, BCCI Chairman, on 28th November 2006.
An announcement was made during the conference conveying the results achieved by the pilot phase of the Productivity Development Project, which is considered to be the first of its kind in Bahrain and aims to closely define the requirements for improvement and development.
The conference targeted participants including decision-makers and owners of Bahraini SMEs. The Conference intended to create economic opportunities for growth and prosperity in Bahrain and to attract local companies to register and make use of this offered programme.
During his closing ceremony speech, H.E. Dr. Fakhro urged SMEs to participate in the program that was officially launched at the Bahrain Productivity Conference, in order to increase productivity by developing products, as well as operational and marketing strategies.
H.E. Dr. Fakhro added "The BCCI anticipates achieving tangible economic performance results within the targeted economic sectors and the improvement in the level of productivity within local establishments, so as to bolster competitiveness of Bahraini firms within the local and international markets".
He also pointed that "This conference resembles a true practical support for the private sector, and to raise the level of productivity in the Kingdom".
A presentation exposed the major results achieved following the success of the Productivity Improvement Program, in which eleven local companies participated from different economic and business sectors along with local consultancy firms. This project aimed to identify obstacles and challenges facing SMEs and hindering the improvement of their productivity, then working on finding solutions to overcome such issues.
Mr. Abdulellah Al-Qassimi, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Labour Fund, highlighted the goals and objectives of the Labour Fund. While Mr. Younis Al Hermi, Private Sector Enterprise Development Manager, Labour Fund, discussed the goals of the Productivity Improvement Program and announced its launch.
Mr. Al-Qassimi revealed that, "The program signifies the inclination of the political direction towards bolstering the private sector, by adopting programs specifically designed to support SMEs. Furthermore, efforts to develop and improve productivity in these enterprises, allows SMEs to contribute to total national productivity. This program clearly falls within the framework of initiatives taken to stimulate the private sector's role and enabling it to become the driving force behind the Kingdom's economy."
The keynote speaker at the conference, Mr. Loh Kok Choy, member of the Singapore Standards and Productivity Board, spoke of the international issues of productivity improvement, and exhibited a field research within that domain. After which Mr. Ahmad Dhaif, Assistant Secretary General – GOIC, discussed the issues of regional productivity improvement.
During the opening ceremony, Mr. Adel Mattar, Board Member of BCCI, spoke of the importance of productivity from a business owner's perspective, while Mr. Abdul Ghaffar Abdulhussain, General Secretary Federation of The Workers Unions of Bahrain, tackled the same issue but from the workers' perspective.
Following the opening ceremony, an exhibition was launched in which consultancy firms displayed the services they provided within the field, then the first meeting was in session, attended by a number of Bahraini economists and comprised of a debate about the issues facing productivity improvement in Bahrain.
In conclusion of the conference, attended by various economic sectors of Bahrain, as well as representatives of international federations, decision makers, press, and media, an awarding ceremony was held to honour the participants of the Productivity Improvement Program. Finally followed by a screening of the film "Productivity… a path to success".
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