Egypt captures 2008 Middle East World Economic Forum

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GENEVA: The World Economic Forum s annual Middle East meeting of business and political leaders will take place in Egypt next year and will alternate subsequently with Jordan, the organization said Thursday. This year s regional meeting is due to assemble Middle Eastern and world leaders by the shores of the Dead Sea in Jordan from May 18 to 20. The event was held in Egypt last year and will return to the Red Sea resort of Sharm el Sheikh again in 2008, the Forum told AFP. The Middle East meeting has been to Qatar, Egypt and Jordan from 2003 to 2005. The World Economic Forum s decision to come back to Egypt amounts to a vote of confidence by the global community to stay the course of reform and market liberalization, said Egypt s Minister of Trade and Industry Rachid Mohamed Rachid. Debates on Iraq, Iran s role in the region, the future of the Israeli-Palestinian relations, economics and finance are scheduled for the Forum meeting in Jordan from next Thursday. A summit of the G11 group of countries campaigning for poverty reduction – Croatia, Ecuador, Georgia, Honduras, Indonesia, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan, Paraguay, Sri Lanka and Tunisia – is planned for May 19 on the sidelines of the event.

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