Tunisia to host business summit
By Houda Trabelsi for Magharebia in Tunis – 25/06/12
Tunisia is slated to host a global technology exhibition this fall that could draw business leaders from around the globe.
The "Crossroads of Business and Technology 2012" (CAT 2012) is scheduled for November 28th-30th in Tunis and could be attended by Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates, according to Ferid Tounsi, the CEO of the Agency for Promotion of Industry and Innovation (API).
"Contacts are on-going with Bill Gates, and in the case that his coming is not possible, he may make a speech to the participants at this event via direct satellite," Tounsi told reporters June 19th.
The API chief added that talks were also under way with the CEO of South Korea's Samsung "and many other investment faces in order to make the event and promote Tunisia on the widest scope and profile the distinctive benefits the country offers, in particular highlighting the reforms that have been achieved in the field of good governance, transparency of investment and purity of the business climate".
Tounsi presented the exhibition as an economic and industry event that will attract 15,000 professional visitors, a thousand foreign businessman and 500 exhibitors, including 300 Tunisian manufacturers. Programming is expected to include a thousand partnership meetings in the manufacturing field.
The aim of this event, which was developed under the theme, "The new post-revolution Tunisia, a country achieving take-off again," is to facilitate integration of Tunisian industry in the Euro-Mediterranean economic sphere, in particular by linking it to global technology and innovation networks, as well as further defining the strengths of the country.
"Many special economic institutions will work to support the numerous activities on the basis of their patriotism and contributing to defining Tunisia on the widest scope with its preferential advantages," Tounsi said.
Tunisian youth interested in technology expressed satisfaction with hosting the event and the international dignitaries as a way to keep pace with global development and promote Tunisia.
"Bill Gates coming to Tunisia is an important event that should be promoted well in order to boost investment in technology in our country," said Mouhab Abed, 22. "How I wish for [Facebook founder Mark] Zuckerberg to come to Tunisia."
Maysa Ferjeni, 29, said, "Holding such huge events in a period of economic crisis in Tunisia is a difficult task and good at the same time," adding, "We must prepare well for such an event, as its success has a positive impact on the country and encourages foreign investment in Tunisia."
"It is important for Tunisia to host major economic figures after the revolution," commented Mohamed Dalleji, 35. "Tunisia has the same need to start anew, especially as our country is rich in young energies in the technologies field just waiting for investors to open the doors of innovation to them."
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