Credit Suisse hosts second annual MENA Equities Conference in Beirut
Credit Suisse’s second annual MENA Conference commenced in Beirut bringing together speakers from over 40 corporates across the region. Against the backdrop of global economic challenges and the recent political events that have affected MENA nations, the two-day event is focused on discussing measures that can help realise the economic potential of the region.
The conference started with opening remarks from Fawzi Kyriakos-Saad, Chief Executive Officer of Credit Suisse in the EMEA region. Commenting on the Bank’s commitment to the MENA region he said, “Credit Suisse continues to strive to deliver differentiated and content-rich conferences as part of its commitment to the region and its client base here. As part of our business model adaptation, we have taken steps to further evolve our integrated strategy and reconfirmed our commitment to serving the faster-growing markets, including the Middle East.”
Bassam Yammine, Co-CEO and Head of Investment Banking and Asset Management of Credit Suisse in the MENA region added, "Credit Suisse’s strong presence in MENA demonstrates its confidence in the region’s long-term and sustainable growth. The regional equity markets give substantial opportunities for investors. Attractive valuations combined with expansionary fiscal policies of many countries as well as a favourable demographic profile create a compelling growth story."
In his keynote speech, Michael O'Sullivan, Head of Portfolio Strategy and Thematic Research at Credit Suisse and a member of the Credit Suisse Research Institute, elaborated on the economic challenges and long term opportunities for MENA nations affected by the events of Spring 2011.
Drawing from an analysis of 87 episodes of political transition over the past 50 years, O'Sullivan pointed out that political transition can have a big impact on the real economy. Economic variables like GDP per capita and foreign direct investment tend to rise in the decade after a political change has taken place while unemployment and inflation typically decline. O’Sullivan outlined seven new ideas to help spur an economic revival in the region. These include channelling capital to small and new businesses to unlock wealth; harnessing social media technology to build virtual labour networks; giving the private sector a larger role in infrastructure development; helping dynamic sectors like tourism move further up the value chain; and establishing a pan-regional economic crisis council body.
The conference featured presentations and one-on-one corporate meetings, which covered a number of interesting viewpoints on the outlook for MENA equities against the backdrop of market volatility and the current sovereign debt crisis.
Credit Suisse AG is one of the world's leading financial services providers and is part of the Credit Suisse group of companies (referred to here as 'Credit Suisse'). As an integrated bank, Credit Suisse offers clients its combined expertise in the areas of private banking, investment banking and asset management.
Credit Suisse provides advisory services, comprehensive solutions and innovative products to companies, institutional clients and high-net-worth private clients globally, as well as to retail clients in Switzerland. Credit Suisse is headquartered in Zurich and operates in over 50 countries worldwide.
The group employs approximately 50,500 people. The registered shares (CSGN) of Credit Suisse's parent company, Credit Suisse Group AG, are listed in Switzerland and, in the form of American Depositary Shares (CS), in New York.