Al-Ghunaim Receives Two Official Recognitions, Affirms Need for East-West Dialogue, Understanding

Published November 11th, 2006 - 04:08 GMT

Global Investment House "Global" announced today that Vice Chairman and Managing Director Maha K. Al-Ghunaim received two awards official Italian recognitions during an international conference held in Rimini, Italy during which she stressed the need for East-West dialogue and understanding to clear misconceptions.

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbaciov, the Gorbachev Foundation Chair, invited Global’s MD to the "32nd Pio Manzu International Conference” held in Italy in the period 27-29 October, attended by globally influential personalities and United Nations officials.

The UN Secretary General Kofi Annan addressed the gathering through a personal emissary.

At the event, Al-Ghunaim received two recognitions; “the Medal of the Italian State” from the Italian government and an award from Rimini’s Chamber of Commerce, in appreciation to her professional dedication and success.

In a letter addressed to AlGhunaim, Gorbachev described the Global MD as a “real star in Arab banking” pointing to her success as “not only a significant example of emancipation for Arab women, but also a cultural lesson for the West.”

Previous winners include; H.M. Rania al Abdullah, Queen of Jordan, HRH Diana the late Princess of Wales, American actress Sharon Stone , Oscar Arias former President of Costa Rica and a Nobel Peace Laureate, Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Myanmar, Abdullah Yacoub Bishara, Secretary General, Gulf Cooperation Council, H.R.H. Prince Al Waleed bin Talal Al-Saud, Mary Robinson former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva.

The Pio Manzu International Research Centre organizes the high profile conference since 1973. The U.N. co-sponsored this year’s meeting.

The conference took place under the title: “Life in the Balance" and saw renowned social and economic scientists and Noble-prize winners participating with their views and opinions on how to resolve Global issues.

On day one, Al-Ghunaim took part in a workshop on Globalization and its distortions that tackled many current issues and ways to resolve them.

“In a world more interconnected than ever before, Globalization has opened the door to many benefits.” However, “there is an urgent need to redesign the strategy for development by introducing certain correctives,” Al-Ghunaim said in a speech delivered during the workshop.
She expressed her honor to have attended the international gathering which gave her the opportunity to voice some of the concerns people face in this region due to Globalization.

The event organizers asked Al-Ghunaim to share her point of view as an Arab figure, about her experience as an Arab Muslim woman with a host of prestigious guests including businessmen, politicians and other social figures from Italy, Europe and the United States.

In an impromptu speech delivered on day two of the event, she expressed her appreciation for the coveted award and stressed on the importance of recognizing the good potential of Kuwait and the region amasses and the importance of knowledge in the face of fear and prejudice.

The Global official said, “I can understand why so many are surprised by my achievements as a founder and CEO of a leading investment bank in the GCC and the MENA region based out of Kuwait.”

Al-Ghunaim stated that she is a living proof that with determination, hard work and a bit of luck “we can make our dreams come true,” pointing that being a woman in her position, have helped make a difference in perception as small as it remains vital.

She also touched on the misperception in the West of the Arab World and the Middle East as the bed of religious fundamentalism, political terrorism and sectarian violence.

“If there is a one word I want to leave with you today is that we Arabs are just like you, we too want to live in a better world.” However, “It is only through direct communications we can elevate the misconceptions surrounding our cultures and ideologies,” she affirmed.

“The award proves that our country and regional business culture welcome determination and harnesses creativity, regardless of gender and origin.”

The conference was attended by many Italian and international figures such as the Syrian poet Ali Esber “Adonis”, George Wallace, Liberian Foreign Minister, Hans Martens, Chief Executive, European Policy Centre-Brussels, two Italian senators, the Italian Vice Minister of Economy and Finance, Rimini Chamber of Commerce Chairman, Rimini’s Mayor, and Prefect.

In the course of its history, the Centre has hosted numerous Kuwaiti personalities, including the Minister of Oil H.E. Ali Khalifa Al-Azabi Al-Sabah, and Mahmoud Al Adasani, Undersecretary, Ministry of Oil, Kuwait.

About Global Investment House “Global”

Global Investment House “Global” is a full-fledged investment company incorporated in 1998, and falls under the regulation of the Central Bank of Kuwait. Its underlying foundation is to meet the high expectations of local and international clients, and to enhance the investment service industry in Kuwait and the region. Today, Global stock lists on the Kuwait, Bahrain, and Dubai Stock Exchanges, with branches and affiliates in Bahrain, Dubai and Abu Dhabi (UAE), Jordan, Qatar, and Sudan. Global plays an important role in promoting investment opportunities in the Arabian Gulf Peninsula to investors through expert financial engineering, in-depth research and reports to advance the capital market in the region. Thus, Global’s achievements have been recognized on local, regional, and international levels. The company’s current assets under management reached KD 2.021 billion (USD 7 billion) as at 30 September 2006.
For more information about Global, please contact Khaled A. AlAttar, Assistant Manager Media Relations. E-mail: kattar@global.com.kw, Tel: (965) 240-0551 Ext. 402; Fax: (965) 242-0498; P.O. Box: 28807 Safat, 13149 Kuwait; Web; www.globalinv.net.


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